Madhya Pradesh High Court: Shailendra Shukla, J., while addressing a anticipatory bail application, held that,
“…applicability of the provisions of The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019 is only against the husband and not in-laws.”
The present anticipatory bail application was filed under Section 428 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 as the applicant’s were apprehending their arrest for the offence punishable under Section 498-A Penal Code, 1860, Section 3/4 of Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 and Section 3/4 of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019.
Due to some dispute, complainant after her Nikah returned back to her parental house, further the complainant submitted that her husband on 29th March, 2020 pronounced ‘Talaq’ thrice on telephone, thereafter an FIR was lodged against him.
Counsel for objector and State both submitted that after the Nikah when the complainant got pregnant her mother-in-law started alleging that complainant got pregnant much earlier and the child doesn’t belong to her son along with this, she also started asking for money saying that complainant did not give enough dowry to the applicants.
Bench stated that the applicability of the provisions of The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019 is only against the husband and not in-laws.
Further the Court noted that there was no physical cruelty , it appeared that early pregnancy became the cause of dispute and as per the complainant there was a telephonic call in which husband of the complainant sought termination of the marriage.
Bench found substance in the submission tat demand of dowry after pronouncing divorce was not possible.
Application was allowed and it was directed that in the event of arrest, applicants shall be released on bail. [Rafique Ahmed v. State of M.P., 2020 SCC OnLine MP 1521 , decided on 08-07-2020]