Family laws in India protect only daughter-in-law. But the reality is men and their families are harassed by the daughters-in-law. We have seen such incidents in past too where men and their families are beaten, murdered by their daughters-in-law.
There is one such case of Uttar Pradesh where a daughter-in-law was clearly seen on camera beating her bed ridden mother-in-law. She was arrested but released soon however, she should not have been released.
Here is this latest case of Sangeeta Jain of Bijnor (Uttar Pradesh) who was seen beating her mother-in-law on camera. Her husband knew that she misbehaves with his mother but could not prove it. So, he installed CCTV camera to catch her red-handed.
In this particular case in spite of knowing that there is a dispute among husband and wife, wife was granted, "Right to residence" under Domestic Violence Act. This made the old woman vulnerable in hands of her abusive daughter-in-law.
Such incidents are not rare
These incidents are not rare, our organization has many complaints of such incidents. As there is no law to punish such women no action is taken against them. Without Domestic Violence law for men and their families only extreme cases and deaths are dealt by courts .The signal given to women is, it is alright to abuse and nothing will happen to them.
Almost every day local language newspaper carry news of abusive daughters-in-law. There was one report of Help age India which says most elderly couples are tortured by daughters-in-law.
It is very important to save men and their families from such kind of violence. A fair justice system means justice for all irrespective of class, caste, religion and gender. To achieve a fair justice system it is very important that a message is spread in the society that crime and criminals does not have gender. Criminals will be punished irrespective of gender.
"It is clear violation of human rights if we do not have a law to protect one section of society i.e. the old and vulnerable mothers-in-law from another section of society viz. the hands of abusive daughter-in-laws and a wrong message goes to the world that India doesn't care for its senior citizens," says Sujit Deshpande the national coordinator of Save Indian Family Foundation (SIFF).
"What kind of women empowerment is this if the old women are not safe in the hands of their young daughters-in-law? Is lndian penal code only for young women? "Asks SIFF spokesperson Jyoti Tiwari.
"If rape law can be amended on one gruesome incident why can't we amend Domestic violence law on so many gruesome incidents, what are we waiting for? Are men and their families not part of society?" Asks President of SIFF Rajesh Vakharia.
Attempts to reunite couples after separation or legal battles must be declared illegal and unconstitutional as it increases risk of Domestic Violence as we saw in this particular case.
A Domestic violence act for men and their families to protect them from abuse by daughters-in-law and her family.
Strict punishment for women like Sangeeta Jain.
No right to residence to daughters-in-law in case of dispute with husband's family.
No media trial in such cases only court should have power for trial.