Delhi HC To Examine Issue Of ‘Whether Woman Can Be Ousted From House Under Domestic Violence Act’

Delhi HC

The Division Bench agreed to examine the issue and issued notices to the Central Government, and National Commission for Women on December 21, 2022.

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court has agreed to examine the constitutionality of its provision in regards to ‘whether a woman can be ousted from the matrimonial house in proceedings instituted under the Domestic Violence Act, 2005.’

The Bench comprising of Chief Justice Satish Chander Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad has issued a notice, in Writ Petition filed by Advocate Preeti Singh on behalf of a mother-in-law challenging the constitutionality of the Proviso to Section 19(1)(b) of Domestic Violence Act, 2005 which restrains the ousting of any female from the matrimonial home.

The Division Bench agreed to examine the issue and issued notices to the Central Government, and National Commission for Women on December 21, 2022.

The bench also appointed Senior Advocate Rebecca John to assist the court on the constitutionality of the provisions of the DV Act, which debars the passing of orders against females.

The mother-in-law earlier approached the Tis Hazari District Court for evicting her daughter-in-law from the shared matrimonial home, which was earlier dismissed observing that no such orders can be passed against the female proviso to Section 19(b) of the PWDV Act, 2005.

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Advocate Preeti Singh argued before High Court that the Domestic Violence Act, 2005 is a woman-beneficial legislation and gives the right to residence to the aggrieved woman under Section 19 of the Act.

Section 19(1)(b) gives the power to Magistrate to direct the other family members to remove themselves from the shared household. But its proviso absolutely bars passing such orders against a female.

Preeti Singh also submitted that the act cannot distinguish between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law and the proviso to Section 19(b) is, unfortunately, depriving Senior Citizens (Mothers-in-law) to exercise their rights under the act and is violative of Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

Adv Singh, also submitted that on the one hand any woman, in a live-in-relationship is also entitled to avail remedy of right to residence under the PWDV Act, 2005 against her live-in partner. But at the same time, a woman cannot exercise the same right against her female live-in partner because of this proviso.

It was also submitted that the aggrieved Mother-in-Law or Female Live-in partners are forced to seek relief under Civil Suits or under the Senior Citizens Act, which also leads to ambiguity owing to the conflicting orders of different courts and thus, resulting in an impasse in the execution of the orders.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by HW News staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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