In the aforementioned case, the supreme court observed that "how cruelty
dedicated via one lady towards another girl ends in an extra critical offence".
The court docket also upheld the conviction of mom-in-law underneath phase 498A
of the Indian Penal Code. This opines how critical it is for a girl to stand for
the rights of any other girl rather than workout cruelty on her. If human will
now not stand for human beings then who will? This is where the essence of
The Supreme Court in addition stated that "Being a girl, the appellant, who
turned into the mother-in-law, need to had been more sensitive vis-ą-vis her
daughter-in-law. When an offence has been devoted by way of a lady by using
meting out cruelty to every other lady, i.e., the daughter-in-law, it turns into
a greater critical offence. If a lady, i.e., the mother-in-law herein does not
shield any other girl, the other female, i.e., daughter-in-law could emerge as
susceptible....", located a bench of Justices MR Shah and BV Nagarathna.
Name of the case: Meera v State By the Inspector of Police Thiruvotriyur Police
(crook appeal no. 31 of 2022)
Bench: M.R. Shah, B.V. Nagarathna
Facts Of The Case:
A complaint was lodged through Ramathilagam, mother of the victim who accused
her son-in-law , his mother-in-law , her daughter and father-in-law used to
bother the deceased and additionally subjected her to cruelty/torture for need
of jewels. Husband of the deceased used to live overseas. It changed into also
alleged that the sufferer changed into immolated and turned into taken to the
health facility where she succumbed to accidents. All the accused were charged
for offences under sections 498A and 306 of IPC.
After investigations and examinations of sixteen witnesses, the Trials court
acquitted the accused no. Four (the daddy-in-law) however convicted accused no.
1 to three for offences under sections 498A and 306 of IPC. Further appeal
within the High Court was also dismissed and the order of trial court was
upheld. Accused no. 2(mom-in-law), who felt aggrieved and dissatisfied with the
aid of the High Court's judgment filled an appeal in the Supreme Court.
Claims by using the appellant ( submissions via shri. S Nagamuthu)
- Senior propose shri.S Nagamuthu, on behalf of the appellant claimed that the
trial court docket and high court docket had wrongly held the appellant guilty
below section 498A. He submitted that accidents sustained by the sufferer had
been of deep nature and he or she become no longer in role of creating any
- He further stated that the deceased did not wanted her husband to head
lower back to Saudi Arabia and quarreled with own family individuals for the
same and committed suicide, home quarrel ought to not amount to harassment
beneath phase 498A.
- Shri S Nagamuthu also claimed that for the reason that appellant is 80 yr
antique girl a lenient view may be considered even as imposing the sentence.
No one appeared on behalf of the respondent.
In this case the appeal against the excessive court order was dismissed and the
supreme court located that through the trial court and high court has proved and
established that the deceased turned into a victim of torture and cruelty
through the appellant (mother-in-regulation) with reference to jewels. The
supreme court additionally stated that the findings with the aid of the
subordinate courts must be appreciated and they rightly convicted the accused
responsible of offences beneath section 498A of IPC.
Commenting at the some other appeal that the accused is eighty year old female
and punishment given must be lenient. Supreme Court determined that during the
proceedings inside the trial courtroom the accused became nearly sixty five
years old after which the trial court sentenced her 1 year of imprisonment along
with fine. This happened back then in 2006 but now for the reason that accused
is eighty year old , Supreme Court decreased the sentence from three hundred and
sixty five days to a few months together with the fine already imposed via the
Court stated that:
Being a lady, the appellant, who
was the mother-in-law, ought to have been more sensitive vis-ą-vis her
daughter-in-law. When an offence has been committed by a woman by meting out
cruelty to another woman, i.e., the daughter-in-law, it becomes a more serious
offence. If a lady, i.e., the mother-in-law herein does not protect another
lady, the other lady, i.e., daughter-in-law would become vulnerable. In the
present case, even the husband of the victim was staying abroad. The victim was
staying all alone with her in-laws.
Therefore, it was the duty of the appellant,
being the mother-in-law and her family to take care of her daughter-in-law,
rather than harassing and/or torturing and/or meting out cruelty to her
daughter-in-law regarding jewels or on other issues.
Section 498A IPC - [498A. Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting
her to cruelty.-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.
- any wilful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to drive the
woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or
health (whether mental or physical) of the woman; or
- harassment of the woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing
her or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any
property or valuable security or is on account of failure by her or any
person related to her to meet such demand.]
Section 306 IPC- Abetment of suicide.-If any person commits suicide, whoever
abets the commission of such suicide, shall be punished with imprisonment of
either description for a term which may extend to ten years, and shall also be
liable to fine.
As we observed that how the latest supreme court judgment followed a more
liberal approach in cases related to cruelty by in-laws in an indian society.
This fresh approach does not show any traces of patriarchy which has been
prevalent in our society since ages. Its 21st century and there is no place for
dated approaches and this recent case shows that how people have become aware of
their rights and knows very well to fight for its violation.
An important issue raised in the judgment is that "women are women's worst
enemies," but we cannot put everyone under the same umbrella. Whatever the
situation is, one should not forget the principle of humanity as it is well said
that " being human is given , but keeping our humanity is a choice". "Bhagavad
Gita calls on humanity to dedicate body, mind and soul too pure duty and not to
become mental voluptuaries at the mercy of random desires and undisciplined
" Education breeds confidence. confidence breeds hope. Hope breeds peace -
Confucius" I agree to this quote and I think that education plays a very
important role in making you fearless indirectly resulting in making you stand
up for your own rights as in the above case the deceased's mother stood up for
rights of her daughter.
I really appreciate the honorable Supreme Court for passing a judgment which
will always be considered as a precedent in cases related to cruelty by in-laws.
Judgment of this nature empowers society and this is a stepping stone for a
greater change in the indian society. As we all know journey of thousand miles
begins with a single step. This is a one small step for a man, one giant leap