Quashing of 498A FIR or Complaint Case by Allahabad High Court

The law under section 498A Indian Penal Code has been legislated to curb the issues of cruelty to a woman by the husband or any other relative of the husband either in physical form or mentally. At one point in time wife burning, dowry death, harassment and cruelty to wives/ daughter-in-law was rampant in the country and to curb the same the law was enacted. This section /law follows the inquisitorial system of the criminal justice system which makes it strict and stands out and for this reason immediate arrests are made by Police.  Here, a mere allegation is sufficient for the criminal justice machinery to believe that the crime has been done by the accused person named in the FOR. The burden of proof of proving that no such crime was done by the accused person rests upon them. In normal penal provisions, the burden of proof is upon the complainant and prosecution that the offense was committed by the accused. It is for this reason that police does not hesitate in arresting the accused person named in FIR u/s 498A and the lower court /trial judges do not hesitate in rejecting their bail application.

The remedy against 498A and other domestic and matrimonial violence cases lies before the Hon’ble Allahabad High Court.

A prayer for quashing can be made before the Allahabad High Court by learned Advocates but same is not easy to crack and it takes experienced and seasoned lawyers to make out a case of quashing. The prayer for quashing can be entertained only if the material relied upon by the petitioner would rule out the assertion contained in the complaint. The various averments made in the complaint have to be refuted or challenged by the petitioner through their advocate. How natural the challenge seems is the trick  and this is where the role of a seasoned advocates comes in handy and helpful for the petitioner/ accussed.

The Allahabad High Court has inherent powers to quash a criminal proceeding where it is manifestly attended with mala fide and/or where the proceeding is maliciously instituted with an ulterior motive for wreaking vengeance on the accused and with a view to spite him due to private and personal grudge.

Quashing of 498A and mediation at Allahabad High Court.
fighting couple

While dealing with false cases of domestic violence under section 498A of India Penal Code in a landmark decision the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Geeta Mehrotra & Anr. V. State of UP categorically observed that “mere casual reference of the names of the family members in a matrimonial dispute without allegation of active involvement in the matter would not justify taking cognizance against them overlooking the fact borne out of experience that there is a tendency to involve the entire family members of the household in the domestic quarrel taking place in a matrimonial dispute specially if it happens soon after the wedding.”

The boy and the family members of the boy should not panic in case a First Information Report is registered against them by the girl in any part of the state of Uttar Pradesh. The parents of the boy should immediately take the recourse before Allahabad High Court and file miscellaneous criminal writ petition under article 226 of the Constitution of India. Initially the court may direct for the settlement of the case through Mediation centre at Allahabad Court. In case the mediation is successful than the FIR will be quashed automatically by Court. In case the mediation fails than the Court shall hear the arguments of both the sides and decide the case on the basis of the facts and circumstances of the case.

We at Nikhil Kumar and Associates are regularly filing such petitions and are settling the disputes between the families in distress due to wrong choice of marriage.

When to file a petition before Allahabad High COurt in FIR case?

In false and frivolous cases file a criminal misc writ petition before Allahabad High Court immediately, as soon as possible. after registration FIR. 

In how much time a 498A mediation is concluded in Allahabad High Court?

It takes around 4 to 6 months for a successful mediation to get concluded. The parties usually settle the matter amicably where a major portion of money incurred by bride side in the marriage is refunded by the husband’s side, the criminal complaints/ FIR is withdrawn and parties agree to file mutual divorce Agreement. 

How much time does it take to get 498A quashed from Allahabad High Court?

It can take anywhere between 02 months to 02 years depending upon the nature and behavior of parties. While stay against arrest of all the accused persons is granted by the hon’ble High Court within 03 to 09 days of the institution of the  writ petition/ 482 CrPC application but getting the case permanently closed after quashing may take some time.

Certain Examples where 498A FIR/ Complaints were quashed by Allahabad High Court and were handled by Mr. Nikhil Kumar Advocate, Allahabad High Court:

  1. In a case the husband and wife from district of Uttar Pradesh got married but soon after they left parental house and settled in Bombay wherefrom ,the husband was a offered a job in Dubai. To join in Dubai, the wife was left at the parents place of the boy. The boy used to come every quarter to meet his wife and parents. After one year of shifting by the husband, an FIR was lodged by the girl against the boy and his family alleging cruelty at her native city. The FIR was stayed and matter was settled by conciliation efforts made by the firm. The parties took mutual divorce thereafter and FIR was quashed.
  2. In another case, the complainant had all along lived in U.S.A and left India immediately after marriage. There were no allegations of cruelty or breach of trust during this period. The allegations were that her father spent money in marriage beyond his capacity. It was observed that this does not amount to a dowry demand. If her jewellery or other articles were left behind in India with her mother-in-law or brother-in-law, the Court of competent jurisdiction had passed order in respect of these dowry articles and directed the parties for exchange of those articles. Decree of divorce passed by Court of U.S.A was not challenged by the complainant. Under those circumstances, the FIR was quashed.

So overall the conclusion is that the preparation of the case by the party / accused petitioner along with an advocate can get the FIR under section 498A quashed.

Cruelty to women is bad in law and in general for society as well. It must be deprecated in all forms. Cinema has also depicted stories of cruelty to women and one such movie was Provoked. For a better society, the women deserve a better status and respect.