What are the legal remedies for domestic violence in India?

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence in India, many legal remedies are provided by the government of India and each state.

:tipping_hand_woman:t5: Note: In case of an emergency, call the women’s helpline number 1091 / 10920 or 112 to get help from the women’s cell of the police.

Firstly, the most important law to know about is the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (PWDVA). This act covers a wide range of abuses – physical, emotional, sexual, economic, and even verbal abuse – within a domestic relationship.

Under the PWDVA, you can seek several types of relief:

  • Protection Orders: These orders can prohibit the abuser from further violence, contact, or even entering the shared household.
  • Residence Orders: These ensure your right to live in the shared house, regardless of who owns it.
  • Monetary Relief: This includes getting maintenance for yourself and any children, compensation for injuries, and even having medical expenses covered.
  • Custody Orders: If children are involved, the court can grant you temporary custody and decide on visitation rights for the abuser.

In addition to these, the PWDVA also allows for compensation orders for the harm caused. It’s worth noting that while the PWDVA is primarily focused on women, certain provisions can extend to protect other vulnerable individuals in the household as well.

But that’s not all. The Indian Penal Code (IPC) also has provisions that can be used in domestic violence cases:

  • Section 498A: This deals specifically with cruelty by a husband or his relatives.
  • Sections 323 & 325: These address assault and causing hurt.
  • Section 304B: This is applicable in cases where dowry harassment is involved.

If you decide to pursue legal action, the usual process involves approaching a Protection Officer at the local police station appointed under the PWDVA. They’ll help you file a complaint by preparing a Domestic Incident Report (DIR) based on your domestic violence complaint and guide you through the court process.

You should know that the court may grant interim relief to the victim, such as a protection order or residence order, during the pendency of the case.

Besides these legal routes, remember that there are support services available as well. Shelter homes, free medical aid, and counselling can be incredibly helpful during this difficult time.

:tipping_hand_man:t5: Please note: This is just a general overview. The specific legal remedies available to you will depend on the unique circumstances of your case. It’s always best to consult with a qualified lawyer for personalized advice and guidance.

Still, have questions? :thinking: Ask by replying to us. :point_down:t5: We will help you.