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Bhartesh Singh Thakur, Hindustan Times
Panchkula, November 19, 2012
A local court has sentenced a serving colonel of armoured engineer regiment to three-year rigorous imprisonment for demanding dowry. His parents were however acquitted of all charges.   Colonel Sanjay Kumar, a resident of Ambala, has been handed out maximum imprisonment under Section 498-A of IPC (subjecting women to cruelty for dowry).

As per prosecution case, Kumar was married to a Panchkula girl, daughter of a retired squadron leader, on April 20, 1998. The bride’s family had given 400-500 gm gold, refrigerator, washing machine, a scooter etc in dowry and reportedly spent Rs. 5 lakh on the marriage.

Colonel Kumar later allegedly beat up his wife for dowry. “He even stabbed her in the stomach, about which medical evidence was submitted in the court,” said Shailendar Kaur, counsel for the girl.

“Kumar, who did his MTech from IIT Kharagpur, used to demand that as he had passed out from an IIT, he should have got a dowry of Rs. 40-50 lakh but his father-in-law had cheated him by just spending Rs. 4-5 lakh,” added Kaur.

“Initially, an FIR was registered against the colonel, but he reached out to his wife and it was withdrawn. He fooled his wife with false assurances as he had to go for international posting in Congo at that time,” claimed the lawyer.

The second FIR was registered on March 4, 2006, whereby his parents Gurdit Lal and Naresh Rani were also made accused. The couple have a 14-year-old son from the wedlock.