Legal Blog: Add Section 302 IPC in case of Dowry Death : Supreme Court

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Add Section 302 IPC in case of Dowry Death : Supreme Court

We had earlier reported a Judgment of the Apex Court where the Bench had opined that Dowry Deaths fall under the category of 'rarest of rare' case and thus is liable to be punished with the death sentence.

In a significant order, passed today, the Supreme Court directed that all trial courts in the country shall add Section 302 IPC (murder) in a case of dowry death under Section 304 B so that death sentence can be given in heinous and barbaric crimes against women. 

A bench comprising Justices Markandey Katju and Gyan Sudha Misra also directed that the copy of this order be sent to Registrar Generals of all High Courts which will circulate it to all trial courts for compliance. 

The apex court disapproved the approach of the Punjab and Haryana High Court which reduced the life sentence given to the appellant Rajbir alias Raju, who killed his wife Sunita by striking her head repeatedly against the wall and finally throttling her, to ten years. 

The apex court issued notice to Rajbir, asking him to explain why life imprisonment awarded to him by the trial court should not be restored. 

The apex court, however, granted bail to his mother considering that she is about 80 years old. 

Sunita was killed within six months of her marriage for not meeting the dowry demands. 

The Supreme Court had in another case issued notice to Sukhdev Singh, asking him to explain why his life imprisonment should not be enhanced to death sentence. 

The apex court in order said, ‘We further direct all trial courts in India to ordinarily add Section 302 to the charge of Section 304 B, so that death sentence can be imposed in such heinous and barbaric crimes against women.’ Justice Katju had earlier described Indian society as sick in view of increasing incidence of murder of young married women to satisfy the lust and greed for dowry

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