Pay compensation to widow for domestic violence: HC to in-laws
In a landmark judgment, the Bombay High Court has directed a widow's in-laws to pay her compensation under the Domestic Violence Act.mumbai Updated: Aug 20, 2010 01:54 IST
In a landmark judgment, the Bombay High Court has directed a widow's in-laws to pay her compensation under the Domestic Violence Act.
Justice J.H. Bhatia directed Banu Warunkar's (35) father-in-law Abdul (65), mother-in-law Mumtaz (60) and brother-in-law Alimoon (30) to pay compensation of Rs 1.9 lakh for dispossessing her from her husband's shop.
The compensation awarded is of Rs 5,000 per month since May 2007. The Warunkars have also been directed to pay Banu Rs 5,000 every month.
Under the Act, domestic relationship is "a relationship between two persons who live or have at any point of time, lived together in a shared household, when they are related by consanguinity, marriage, or through a relationship in the nature of marriage, adoption or are family members living together as a joint family."
Mahableshwar residents Banu and Hashim, who ran a shop, got married in 1989.
After his death in 1992, Banu managed the shop. In 2006, Banu's father bought another shop nearby in her son's name.
Banu alleged that on March 26, 2007, her brother-in-law assaulted her and took possession of both shops. She filed a police complaint.
Later she filed a complaint before a metropolitan magistrate under the Domestic Violence Act, seeking re-possession of her shops and compensation.
The magistrate directed the Warunkars to hand over the shops to Banu, but did not award her compensation.
The Warunkars challenged the order before the sessions court, which observed that Banu had failed to prove that she was in possession of the shops.
Banu then moved the high court. Reversing the order of the sessions court, the high court observed that it was proved that Banu was living with her in-laws since 1989.
Observing that taking away the shops meant loss of livelihood for her, the high court directed her in-laws to compensate her.
However, the high court asked her to approach the civil court for possession of the shops because it was not covered under the Act.