‘Don't implicate whole family in dowry case merely on FIR’



New Delhi: Family members of a man should not be implicated in a dowry case just because their names have been mentioned in the complaint without any specific allegation levelled against them, the Supreme Court has said.

The apex court said that courts should be cautious in implicating family members as the wife sometime wants to settle scores arising out of teething problems or "skirmish of domestic bickering".

"...If the FIR as it stands does not disclose specific allegation against accused more so against the co-accused specially in a matter arising out of matrimonial bickering, it would be clear abuse of legal and judicial process to mechanically send the named accused in the FIR to undergo trial," a bench of justices T S Thakur and Gyan Sudha Misra said.

The bench said that family members should not be implicated unless FIR discloses specific allegations against the relatives who are prima facie not found to have indulged in physical and mental torture of the complainant-wife.

"The courts are expected to adopt a cautious approach in matters of quashing specially in cases of matrimonial dispute whether the FIR in fact discloses commission of an offence by the relatives or the FIR prima facie discloses a case of over-implication by involving the entire family at instance of the complainant, who is out to settle her scores arising out of teething problem or skirmish of domestic bickering while settling down in her new matrimonial surrounding," it said.

PTI