New Delhi: The relatives of a husband should not be roped in cases of matrimonial disputes and dowry deaths unless specific instances of their involvement in the crime is made out, the Supreme Court has held.
A bench of Justices SA Bobde and L Nageswara Rao also cautioned the courts to be careful in proceeding against “distant relatives” of the husband in such cases.
The apex court judgement came as it allowed a plea filed by the maternal uncles of a man challenging a Hyderabad High Court’s January 2016 verdict dismissing their petition for quashing criminal proceedings against them in a matrimonial dispute case.
“The courts should be careful in proceeding against the distant relatives in crimes pertaining to matrimonial disputes and dowry deaths. The relatives of the husband should not be roped in on the basis of omnibus allegations unless specific instances of their involvement in the crime are made out,” the bench said.
The bench said that after considering the charge sheets filed in the matter, the court was of the view that a prima facie case was not made out against maternal uncles of the man for alleged charges of subjecting a married woman to cruelty, criminal conspiracy, cheating and kidnapping. The complainant alleged harassment by her husband and his family members, including his maternal uncles, and also claimed that her son was kidnapped by her husband.