By – Diksha Barrot


In a country like India marriage is considered to be a very sacred thing. Especially Hindu marriage which is considered to be a sacrament. It is believed that marriage in a Hindu culture is a spiritual union between a man and a woman for spiritual realization. Although marriage is considered pure, pious  and sacramental, there are many bad truths associated with marriage that are very hard to accept. One of the longest standing wickedness associated with marriage from a woman’s point of view in India is the dowry system.

 Women are victimized in demand for dowry by the groom’s  family. They are tortured  to such an extent that they are even killed by their own husband and in- laws. A demand of dowry persists even after marriage. Certain provisions have been made under Indian Penal Code,1860 and Dowry Prohibiton Act 1961 to curtail the practice of demand of dowry . This paper is an endeavor to supply a glimpse of practice of dowry death in India and the penal consequences attached to it.

KEYWORDSMarriage, sacrament,  Dowry, dowry death, custom,  Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961, Indian Penal Code 1860


At the beginning , dowry given by the bride’s family to the groom’s family on the occasion of marriage was a voluntarily custom, but later on took the shape of a tool to exert pressure on the bride and her parents, in the name of social practice and honor. The dowry at present is a source of both pleasure and annoyance in the society. It is also a enjoyment to the husband and his relatives who get cash, costly dress and utensils, furniture, bedding materials, etc. But, it is a bother to the bride’s parents who have to bear enormous cost to satisfy the unreasonable demands of the bridegroom’s party.

On an average a bride is burnt every hour in the country as consequence of the demand of dowry . This practice of demand of dowry is an ongoing practice for  many years. The day when a girl child is born in a family , the pressure on the parents for her future starts from there . As soon as the girl is born, her parents start thinking that how to get her dowry for her marriage and then they keep preparing for her dowry till the age of marriage of the girl. This pressure on parents often becomes the reason of female foeticide. Living in 21st century, where everything is changing and improving in the interest of welfare of society there is still a part of society which is struggling for their rights.


Dowry can be characterized as the cash, good or property that a lady brings to her better half at the hour of her marriage. It is the installment in real money or some sort of endowments given to a husband’s family alongside the lady of the hour. By and large, it incorporates cash, gems, electrical machines, furniture, bedding, utensils and other family things that assist the wedded couple set up their home. This well established custom has progressed significantly from being a badge of affection for the little girl to a social threat.

Prior settlement was given by the lady of the hour’s family to the lucky man’s family as a deliberately custom, yet now it has changes its sense and is simple tension on the lady’s family. Which was a willfully practice by lady’s family is currently being requested egotistically by the husband and his family at the event of marriage as well as even following quite a while of marriage. Each parent needs to praise their girl’s marriage in the most ideal manner they can and for that they go through their entire life causing plans for the dowry they to need to provide for their girl’s family after marriage.

Dowry Death can be characterized as an unnatural passing of the spouse because of interest for endowment by the husband or potentially his family. Settlement can incorporate anything from cash to resources like gems, portable and enduring property and so on Ladies are either executed by the husband or his family, if their interest, ravenousness and desire for endowment are not satisfied or the lady ends it all since she was unable to confront the provocations any longer over the satisfaction of the settlement.

It is likewise another approach to begin or push the spouse’s vocation or to satisfy the family’s requests to the creating social materialistic prerequisites. It is a plain covetousness of the spouse and his family to request share in any case this appalling practice would have halted long back.

The creator of Indian constitution needed to give ladies of India a better freedom through the law. The organizer of the Indian constitution remember that the Indian ladies are really not in great condition in each space of society. To improve the situation with the ladies in our prelude is guarantee that equity, uniformity and freedom are accomplished. Part III of the constitution contains a considerable rundown of major rights. The state has ordered numerous ladies related enactment to secure ladies against social imbalance and social shades of malice like assault, share, kid marriage, grabbing and kidnapping, attack, torment, both physical and Mental, lewd behavior and so on.

In Spite of every one of these defensive enactments, Violence against ladies, in India keeps on rising each year, which involves concern Inside endless maltreatments against ladies the settlement misuse is ascending in disturbing pace in India. The compromising settlement precluded under the Act it is as yet rehearsed by the Indian. The share and endowment demise is most likely contacting practically the entirety of the Indian culture ,class, religion and broadly to the general public.The endowment passing of a ladies in her marital home is actually a terrible wrongdoing. Notwithstanding all shields given by the ladies in our nation keep on anguish .


The Indian Penal Code (I.P.C.), Criminal Procedure Code (Cr.P.C.) and Indian Evidence Act (I.E.A.) under the criminal law (Second Amendment) Act, 1983 and by President of India to manage share passing cases and of savagery caused to wedded ladies .


At the moment that the death of a married woman is brought about by any burns-through or significant harm or occurs under unpredictable or dubious conditions inside seven years of her marriage length and it is clearly created the impression that soon before her downfall she was exposed to harassing or torture by her significant other or any relative of her mate or parents in law for, or in relationship with, any interest for settlement, such passing ought to be called as “settlement passing”, and such companion or relative or in law s regarded to have caused her end. Whoever presents gift passing may be rebuked with confinement for a term least of seven years which may contact confinement for time without end.

SATBIR SINGH V.S STATE OF HARYANA: Recent  judgement on sec. 304B IPC

The Supreme Court observed that the phrase “soon before” as appearing in Section 304-B of the Indian Penal Code cannot be construed to mean ‘immediate before.

The prosecution must establish existence of “proximate and live link” between the dowry death and cruelty or harassment for dowry demand by the husband or his relatives, the bench comprising CJI NV Ramana and Aniruddha Bose observed.

The court also observed that Section 304­B, IPC does not take a pigeonhole approach in categorizing death as homicidal or suicidal or accidental.


This part talks about remorselessness caused to ladies by spouse or relative of the husband. Whoever being the companion or the relative of the mate or in law of a woman, subjects such woman to mercilessness or incitement or torture may be rebuked with confinement for a term  which may connect as long as three years and to pay fine. The mercilessness can be either mental or on the other hand actual torture which drives the women to present self destruction or to cause veritable harm, or then again danger to life or wellbeing.


  1. This segment manages assumption of abetment of self destruction of a wedded women.
  2. Exactly when the request is whether the commission of self destruction by woman had been abetted by her significant other or any general her significant other and it is exhibited that she had presented self destruction inside a period of seven quite a while from the date of her direct and her mate or such relative of her significant other had exposed to callousness, the court may expect, having appreciation to the different states of the case, that such self destruction had been abetted by her significant other or by such relative of her significant other.


This part manages assumption of settlement demise. Right when the request is whether a man has presented the offer passing of a woman and it is exhibited that soon before her destruction, such woman had been oppressed by such individual to callousness or incitement for, or in relationship with, any interest for enrichment, the court may accept that such individual had caused the offer passing.


Settlement framework in India is one of the perplexing issues .notwithstanding the worldwide mission for disposal of brutality against women, there has been disturbing expansion in the pace of settlement passing cases.  The marvel of settlement has spread not exclusively to all aspects of the country yet in addition to all groups, standing and networks. The current society has gotten materialistic and purchaser driven. Marriage has become  business which puts the lady of the hour on charge side and the spouse on the credit side. Share has become the method of improvement for those during the time spent climbing up. Individuals need more cash to foster their monetary norm for changes in close to home way of life, expectation for everyday comforts and economic wellbeing. They need to develop rich short-term which frequently causes the savage demeanor inclinations towards ladies bringing about an increment in crime percentage against ladies over the course of the year. Consistently in India the ladies are killed by their new spouses or by parents in law for neglecting to carry adequate settlement to the parents in law. For the sake of share a great many ladies are killed, or consumed alive.


Image source:-    https://indianexpress.com/article/lifestyle/life-style/ayesha-suicide-despite-one-death-every-hour-the-menace-of-dowry-persists-7215490/

[1] www.legalblog.in

 [2] www.wikepedia.in

[3] www.indiankanoon.in

[4] www.lawyersclubindia.in

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