Move to amend anti-dowry harassment law draws flak from Men's rights activists

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New Delhi, April 3: Men's rights activists slammed the move on Friday to amend the anti-dowry harassment law, saying it was biased against husbands and their families.

"We have already sent our objections to the prime minister," Save Family Foundation (Delhi chapter) president Swarup Sarkar told IANS.

Move to amend anti-dowry harassment law draws flak from Men's rights activists.
Under the proposal, Section 498-A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) will be made a compoundable offence across India with the permission of courts as suggested by the law commission and Justice Malimath committee on reforms of criminal justice.

Sarkar said Section 498-A (of dowry act) is compoundable only in Andhra Pradesh.

"Statistics showed there is no reduction in its misuse there too. Such provision will lead to more abuse and extortion," he said.

Bangalore-based NGO CRISP president Kumar V. Jahgirdar said if the government really wanted to reduce misuse of Section 498-A, it should be first made a bailable and then a compoundable offence.

CRISP works for the cause of child rights and shared parenting.

There should also be a provision of jail punishment of minimum three years for those abusing the law, he said.

Also read: Govt plans to amend anti-dowry harassment law

Jahgirdar told IANS that a draft note of the union cabinet seeking to amend Section 498-A, making it a compoundable offence, has been sent to the law ministry for drafting a bill.

The Supreme Court in a judgment in 2010 said as it stood now the law (498-A) had become a "weapon in the hands of disgruntled women", Jahgirdar said.

It had also observed that re-look of the entire provision is required by the legislature.

The Child Rights Initiative for Shared Parenting (CRISP) has been demanding amendment to the 498-A in true spirit of Justice Malimath report, making it both bailable and compoundable.

IANS

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