Posts tagged ‘Misuse’



The weaponization of domestic abuse allegations for one’s own benefit casts a shadow over the court system in India. The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (hereafter referred to as ‘Act’) is considered to be one of the most important legislations designed to protect women. It provides legal protection not only from physical abuse but also from emotional, sexual and economic abuse within their matrimonial homes. However, there have been concerns emerging regarding the misuse of the Act, leading to innocent people facing dire consequences from false accusations.


This research uses both qualitative and quantitative approach. The qualitative analysis was done through an examination of Supreme Court judgments, High Court judgment, legal documents and scholarly articles and the quantitative analysis was done by referring to government reports and NGO on the misuse of the Act.


The quantitative analysis shows that since the law’s passage, the number of DVA claims submitted has significantly increased, but there has also been a rise in the number of cases that have been dismissed for lack of proof or misuse. According to estimates, between 5% and 10% of cases are rejected because of misuse. The misuse of the Domestic Violence Act by women was reported by various NGOs and conviction rate was around 2% in 2014, this was later informed to the Rajya Sabha by the Government stating that “Sometimes ” provisions of the Domestic Violence Acts were misused. The Madras High court Bench also observed that the Act suffers from inherent flaws which tempt women to misuse its provisions,  resulting in men to dread being prosecuted under the law without any reason or wrong. Recently the Bombay High court also raised its concern regarding the rise in trend of women misusing the Act in order to build pressure on their estranged husbands.

The Qualitative analysis was done by reviewing case laws and documents related to the Act. Various courts after looking at the misuse of the Act issued few guidelines to be followed by magistrates while dealing with cases that fall under this Act. The Punjab and Haryana HC declared in the case Jaspal Kaur v State of Punjab (2011 SCC Online P&H 14859) that it is not necessary to send notice to all the respondents under section 13 of DV Act especially when it comes to distant relatives, In such cases the Magistrate is expected to carefully think about and consider all the information in regards with the case and then decide whether to send a notice to them or not. In the case of Mohd. Hussain v Shabnam Ara (CRM(M) No.714/2022) wherein the High court of J and K declared that if the magistrate feels the evidence is insufficient then the Magistrate can dismiss the proceedings of the case. In a recent case of the High court of Karnataka (Pramod R S v Lakshmi M R, Criminal Petition No.1511 of 2023), the court declared that if a DV case is filed by the wife after the filing of divorce by the husband in such a scenario the DV case won’t be of much importance but dismissing it would lead to the defeat of the Act. So in order to prevent injustice the DV case will be allowed to proceed but only based on the facts and circumstances of the case. In a similar case by the High court of Karnataka (Nagesh Gunddayal v State of Karnataka, Criminal Petition No. 1511 of 2023) it was stated that the case would lose its significance due to fact that the complaint is made, after receiving the divorce notice from her husband.


The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act (PWDVA), 2005, is a landmark legislation in India created with the sole purpose of shielding women from domestic abuse. The Act includes verbal, economic, emotional, and physical abuse in its broad definition of domestic violence. It offers a number of remedies, such as monetary compensation, residency orders and protection orders. However, since its inception, the Act has faced a number of objections and challenges, raising concerns about its validity and legitimacy. Due to personal motivations, this has resulted in instances when women use false charges, severely harming the wrongfully accused both financially and emotionally. Although the Act was created with the goal of protecting women, it is sometimes utilized to harm innocent people.

It’s time to stand up for those falsely accused under domestic violence laws. Those who make false claims, fueled by malicious intent, must face consequences. Amending the Act to include specific penalties for false accusations is crucial. We need to hold the misusers of these laws accountable for the financial and emotional damage they inflict on the wrongly accused.

It’s not uncommon for petitioners to include the husband’s entire family in their complaints, solely to inflict pain and suffering. To combat this unnecessary litigation and protect the accused, time-bound trials should be made mandatory under all domestic violence laws. This will provide much-needed relief to those wrongly accused and prevent them from enduring prolonged torment.

Let’s ensure justice for all. Let’s protect the wrongly accused by holding the false accusers accountable.


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