The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence (Part-1)

The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, which came into existence from 26-10-2006, is a remarkable piece of legislation in the history of Independent India. The same is considered as an achievement by various human rights activists and women groups. Domestic Violence is a gender specific violence, which is directed against women, and it occurs within interpersonal relationship. The Act provides more effective protection of the rights of women guaranteed under the constitution, to victims of violence of any kind, occurring within the family. It treats Domestic Violence as a human rights issue. It aims to protect women from domestic violence and to prevent the occurrence of Domestic Violence in the society.

The phenomenon of Domestic Violence is widely prevalent in the society but has remained largely invisible. The Act provides the appointment of ‘protection officers’ and ‘service providers’ in addition to the usual machinery of police and courts to enforce the various provisions of the Act.

Section 3 of the Act defines Domestic Violence. Accordingly, any act, omission, commission or conduct of the person which harms or injures or endangers the health, safety, life, limb or well-being, weather manual or physical, of the aggrieved person, includes causing physical abuse, sexual abuse, verbal and emotional abuse and economic abuse shall constitute Domestic Violence. Further an act or omission which harasses, harms, injures, or endangers the aggrieved person with a view to coerce her or any other person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any dowry or other property constitutes domestic violence. ——-(To be continued)