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Wife’s mentally disturbed condition not enough to prove husband’s cruelty

Posted by iluvshrutiverma on December 27, 2009

Mumbai: A soured marriage and the resultant disturbed mental condition of a woman who committed suicide were not sufficient reasons to infer that the husband subjected her to cruelty, the Bombay high court ruled earlier this month.

Setting aside the two-year imprisonment sentence handed out to Kamalkishore Agrawal, 48, by a sessions court, the Nagpur bench of the high court held that, “though it appears that the victim and the applicant had marital discord running over a long period of time which, even according to the applicant, led to mental degradation of the victim, that in itself cannot justify the conclusion that the victim was subjected to such mental or physical cruelty by the applicant, that it drove her to death.”
Agrawal, a businessman, and Seema were married on February 24, 1992. After their marriage, “as caste and custom so permitted,” Agrawal’s adoptive parents also resided with the couple in their home in Akola. The couple had a daughter in 1993. However, since there were differences between the couple and Agrawal’s adoptive parents, they moved out of the house and started living separately from 1997.
On March 12, 1998, Seema set herself on fire and succumbed to burn injuries. A police complaint was lodged by her brother, Kailash, who had stated in his statement that Seema had written letters to him, which said that she was being subjected to cruelty in her marital home and it was not possible for her to live there any longer.
Agrawal’s counsel, however, told the court that there was no “causal connection” between the letters and Seema’s suicide as the last letter written by her was in 1996, while the incident took place in 1998. Moreover, he added, some of the letters were not addressed to Kailash and it was questionable how he was in possession of them.
The additional public prosecutor, however, said that the letters were in Seema’s handwriting and how they came into Kailash’s possession was irrelevant. She further stated that Agrawal in his defense had said that Seema had become so weak mentally that she either sent the letters to the wrong addresses or handed them over to the wrong people. “This written statement of defense categorically shows that the accused admits that the victim was mentally sick. If that was so, as a husband, it was necessary for the applicant to find out as to why his wife slipped into that stage,” the prosecution argued.
Agrawal had contended that Seema suspected she was being subjected to black magic and refused to take any medicines from him. He told the court that he was torn between his wife and his adoptive parents.
The sessions court acquitted Agrawal and his adoptive parents from the charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder but convicted Agrawal under Section 498A (cruelty) of the IPC.
Justice RC Chavan, however, said, “suspicion, howsoever strong, cannot replace proof.” He said with the evidence on record it was not possible to conclusively say that the husband had treated his wife with cruelty, which led her to commit suicide and quashed the conviction and sentence handed out to Agrawal.

9 Responses to “Wife’s mentally disturbed condition not enough to prove husband’s cruelty”

  1. JusticeSeeker said

    My wife always plays the tune of being mentally tortured.
    She enacted the suicide drama
    Now that nobody from our side believed her, she says now she will not commit suicide
    God knows women. Man can never.

    • iluvshrutiverma said

      When she enacted the suicide drama – did you file a complaint? IPC 309 – attempting suicide is a crime.

      Your wife plays the tune of being tortured – well crying baby gets the most milk. Women all over the world will keep playing the victim so that they keep getting the support they are getting today from everyone.

      About women being complex – I am not sure whether they are inherently complex or they just pretend to be complex (bec men love challenges, and women present a challenge when they pretend to be complex)

      • Justice Seeker said

        I committed a blunder by not registering a complaint against her when she enacted suicide attempt, however she will never disagree to that fact that she did try to do that , and she says that she did that due to depression. Is there anything that I can do now, as she did that act about a month ago. If I get her confession recorded somehow of what she tried to do, be it in depression as she says, can that do any good to me?

  2. Arshit said

    My wife was got a bullet injury in her stomach. I took her to hospital. Same day, a FIR was filed against me & my family u/s 498A, 304B, 3/4 DP Act and I was arrested from hospital. As per records, Police recovered a bedsheet & pillow from my home with blood spots on the same day.

    In case diary, arresting been shown after 7 days & says that key of the house was with me and I give the fire arm form the same room. The arm location been shown under the bed from where the bed sheet was recovered.

    Next day, I was sent to jail u/s 498A, 302 IPC showing no evidence of dowry death.

    Next day, I requested to transfer the enquiry. After hearing the transfer order, then IO included the 304B again.

    The second IO, during the enquiry, did not found any evidence. He also, found one sucide note which was written about 20 days ago and says that I am commiting sucide and no one is responsible for my death. The hand writing was proved by forensic experts. On the above facts, I was released u/s 169 IPC.

    Next day of my release, the enquiry was transfered again. The third IO try to frame me u/s 498A, 304B, 3/4 DP Act.

    Meantime, I filed a complaint case in CJM court u/s 156(3). I produced eyewitness, PM doctor, IO, and others. CJM court found sufficient evidence to summon her uncle and cousin brother u/s 302 IPC.

    I also filed a case against them u/s 380 IPC as they have taken everything from my house. During the enquiry, section 411 was also added as IO recovered some items from their home.

    Now, before filing the chargesheet, the enquiry was transfered again to 4th IO on my request. He did not find any evidence and included the CJM order of 302. He closed the enquiry and submitted to SP City. He objected and said CJM order is a different case. He ordered the IO to conduct enquiry again. Finally, the IO filed a chargedsheet u/s 498A, 306 IPC against me only.

    1. I had a 2 house in same colony (60 Mtrs away). I was living in one hose alongwith my wife & child and in-laws was living in second house.

    2. At the time of incident, I was earning about 1 lac rupees per month.

    3. My parents were living about 80 KM away from my house.

    4. My wife did not have father & brother. She had a unmarried sister.

    5. I had car, 2 wheeler & other properties.

    6. My wife was the nominy in my all property, bank accounts, locker, insurance. I bought a land in my wife name about one month before the incident for opening a petrol pump.

    7. For the fire arm case, the IO had not taken the permission of DM which is necessary as per CrPC.


    1. U/s 498A, 306 IPC: The trial is pending and no witness been appeared since 2006 till today. The petitioner is a govt employee.

    2. U/s 302 IPC: My in-laws had taken stay order from high court.

    3. U/s 380, 411 IPC: My in-laws are not appearing since 2004 and court had issued non bailable warrant since 2005.

    4. U/s 25 arms act: No witness appeared except IO since 2004. IO said he did not see DM signature on permision.

    In all above condition, I am not able to join my job.

    Recently, I decided to remove my wife’s name from my passport and applied for the same. The passport form says that if any case is pending then noc to be taken from the court.

    Please advise,

    1. What will be the result of the case and how shold I proceed to get relief.
    2. How to get noc for issue of passport.
    3. Can I get permission to do the job as trial is pending by giving some undertaking.

    • iluvshrutiverma said

      1. It is difficult to comment about the result of the case with the limited details that you have provided here. But one thing is for sure, do not let your present suffer because of fear of the future.

      I read a book in my childhood and it had a dialogue like “When you’re climbing Mount Everest, nothing is easy. You just take one step at a time, never look back and always keep your eyes glued to the top.” A long drawn legal battle is nothing less than climbing Mount Everest.

      The end result of your case shall depend on evidences rather than what the IO says. I do not know what all is submitted in the chargesheet by the IO?

      2. Right to freedom is a fundamental right and right to work is a constituional right under section 41 of the constitution of India. There is no reason why the court should not give you NOC. Re-iterate the fact that you shall be present in the court whenever required.

      3. You do not need any permission to work. I do not know why you are not working.

      On a separate note – how does it help you to get your wife’s name removed from the passport?

      • Arshit said

        Many thanks,
        I was working on and off after releasing on bail as the bail condition does not restrict me but my job involes only overseas travels. I am attending almost 50% of the court dates also since the complainant was missing. Now he appeared in the court as witness and the same time I applied for removal of my wife name from the passport. There is a column in PP form to give the details of any pending case. I filled up that section and now passport authority want NOC from the court. Court said we did not ask you to deposit the passport nor we removed you from the job so why should we give you NOC. I said it is written in the passport form but still he was not agree.
        Then I hired a very well known lawyer in high court and paid a huge amount but he is unable to find the way to proceed. Now what should I do?

        In the same case, my in-laws are also accused for killing of my wife u/s 302. Also I filed another case against them u/s 380, 411 for taking all items from my house when I was in jail. The court had issued NBW several times and now ordered u/s 82.

      • iluvshrutiverma said

        Why is removing her name from the passport so important? Why can’t it just stay there for some more time – till the time this mess is sorted out?

        If in-laws are being prosecuted u/s 302, then there is no case made out u/s 306. The state has to take a stand, it can’t keep prosecuting everyone in proximity – in-laws for murder and you for abetment to suicide. You should get your case quashed under crpc 482 on the basis of the prosecution case u/s 302.

  3. ..- I am really thankful to this topic because it really gives up to date information ;.~

  4. Joyce said

    Yes My ex husband tried this. Saying he was mental to try and get out of a PMA….Did not work. He is a PTSD FAKKING VET….Yes MEN try this all the time too, VETS are really bad about it. NEVER MARRY A VET.

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