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Dowry Harassment.



THE DOWRY PROHIBITION ACT, 1961.

  • An Act to prohibit the giving or taking of Dowry.

Definition.

(Section 2, The Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961).

In this act, ‘dowry’ means any property and valuable security given and agreed to given either directly or indirectly-

(a) by one party to a marriage to the other party to the marriage; or

(b) by the parents of either party to a marriage or by any other person, to either party to the marriage or to any other person; at or before or any time after the marriage in connection with the marriage of said parties but does not include dower or Mahr in the case of persons to whom the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) applies.

Punishment.

  • Penalty for giving or taking of dowry (Section 3, The Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961).

(1) If any person, after the commencement of this Act, gives or takes or abets the giving or taking of dowry, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than five years, and with the fine which shall not be less than fifteen thousand rupees or the amount of the value of such dowry, whichever is more:

Provided that the Court may, for adequate and special reasons to be recorded in the judgement, impose a sentence of imprisonment for a term of less than five years.

(2)Nothing in sub-section (1) shall apply to or, in relation to,-

Presents which are given at the time of a marriage to the bride (without any demand having been made in that behalf):

Provided that such presents are entered in list maintained in accordance with rule made under this Act;

Presents which are given at the time of marriage to the bridegroom (without any demand having been made in that behalf):

Provided that such presents are entered in a list maintained in accordance with rules made under this Act;

Provided further that where such presents are made by or on behalf of the bride or any person related to the bride, such presents are of a customary nature and the value thereof is not excessive having regard to the financial status of the person by whom, or on whose behalf, such presents are given.

  • Penalty for demanding dowry (Section 4, The Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961).

If any person demands directly or indirectly, from the parents or other relatives or guardian of a bride or bridegroom as the case may be, any dowry, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than six months but which may extend to two years and with fine which may extend to ten thousand rupees:

Provided that the Court may, for adequate and special reasons to be mentioned in the judgement, impose a sentence of imprisonment for a term of less than six months.

  • Ban on advertisement (Section 4A, The Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961).

If any person-

(a) Offers, through any advertisement in any newspaper, periodical, journal or through any other media any share in his property or of any money or both as a share in any business or other interest as consideration for the marriage of his son or daughter or any other relative,

(b) Prints or publishes or circulates any advertisement referred to Cl.(a), he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than six months, but which may extend to five years, or with fine which may extend to fifteen thousand rupees:

Provided that the Court may, for adequate and special reasons to be recorded in the judgment, impose a sentence of imprisonment for a term of less than six months.

  • Dowry Death (Section 304B, The Indian Penal Code 1860 ).

(1) Where the death of a woman is caused by any burns or bodily injury or occurs otherwise than under normal circumstances within seven years of her marriage and it is shown that soon before her death she was subjected to cruelty or harassment by her husband or any relative of her husband for, or in connection with any demand for dowry, such death shall be called “dowry death”, and such husband or relative shall be deemed to have caused her death.

(2) Whoever commits dowry death shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than seven years but which may extend to imprisonment for life.

  • Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty (Section 498A, The Indian Penal Code 1860 ).

Whoever, being the husband or the relative of the husband of a woman, subjects such woman to cruelty shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine.

The Dowry Prohibition (Orissa Amendment) Act, 1976.

The Orissa Dowry Prohibition (Amendment) Rules- 2006

PREVENTIVE MEASURES :

In order to sensitize the police officers at the ground level to prevent offences against women, CID, Crime Branch compiled a Compendium on Crime against Women. The Compendium contains the following:

STATISTICS :