Domestic Violence Act applicable to all Women, irrespective of Religion, Societal Status: Delhi HC

The Delhi High Court recently stressed the universal applicability of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, saying that the statute is designed to provide social justice to all women, irrespective of their religion or societal status.

Justice Anoop Kumar Mendiratta made this observation while dismissing a petition filed by a man and his relatives, challenging a lower court’s decision to reinstate a domestic violence complaint filed by his wife.

The complaint, initially dismissed by a magisterial court due to the wife’s non-appearance, was later restored by an appellate court.

The appellate court ruled that there were insufficient grounds for the trial court to dismiss the complaint based on a single instance of the wife’s absence.

The petitioners argued that the wife’s non-appearance was a deliberate attempt to harass them and claimed that the appellate court had erred in restoring the case without substantial grounds.

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Justice Mendiratta, however, found no fault in the appellate court’s decision, affirming that the court had justifiably accepted the wife’s reasons for her non-appearance.

The judge remarked: “It may be impressed upon that procedure is the handmaid of justice and is to come to the aid of justice rather than defeating it.”

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