IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 141
(Arising out of SLP(Crl.) No.4979 of 2019)
SHYAMLAL DEVDA AND OTHERS
J U D G M E N T
R. BANUMATHI, J.
Signature Not Verified
Digitally signed by
MAHABIR SINGH Date: 2020.01.22 16:49:10 IST Reason:
2.This appeal arises out of the impugned judgment dated 18.02.2019 passed by the High Court of Karnataka at Bengaluru in Criminal Petition No.5959 of 2015 in and by which the High Court has dismissed the petition filed by the appellants stating that the Metropolitan Magistrate, Bengaluru has the jurisdiction to entertain the complaint filed by the respondent under Sections 18, 19 and 20 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (For short “Domestic Violence Act”).
3.Brief facts which led to filing of this appeal are as follows:-
The marriage of
who are in Chennai, Rajasthan and also in Gujarat. The learned Magistrate, Bengaluru vide order dated 16.04.2015 issued notice to the appellants by holding that the Court has the jurisdiction to entertain the petition filed by the respondent under Section 27 of the Domestic Violence Act.
4.Aggrieved by the issuance of summons in Crl. Misc. No.53 of 2015, the appellants have filed a petition under Section 482 Cr.P.C. before the High Court seeking quashing of the entire proceedings in Crl. Misc. No.53 of 2015 on the file of the
5.Mr. Balaji Srinivasan, learned counsel appearing for the appellants contended that neither the marriage of the parties was solemnized at Bengaluru nor the matrimonial house was at Bengaluru and therefore, the Magistrate Court at Bengaluru has no jurisdiction to entertain the petition filed under the Domestic
Violence Act. Learned counsel submitted that vague allegations have been levelled against the family members of the husband- appellant No.14 which are not at all substantiated. Learned counsel further submitted that with a view to harass the family members of her husband, the respondent has arraigned all the family members of her husband including those who are residents in the State of Rajasthan, Gujarat and other relatives in Chennai and the complaint is an abuse of the process of the Court.
6.Ms. Nidhi, learned counsel appearing for the respondent has contended that by virtue of Section 27 of the Domestic Violence Act, the place where the complainant permanently or temporarily resides or carries on business, Court has the jurisdiction to entertain the complaint and grant protection order and other orders under the Domestic Violence Act. It was submitted that the respondent is currently residing within the territorial limit of the Metropolitan Magistrate of Bengaluru City and that the High Court rightly held that the Metropolitan Magistrate at Bengaluru has the jurisdiction to entertain the complaint. Taking us through the averments in the complaint, learned counsel for the respondent has submitted that there are several instances of domestic violence against the
7.We have carefully considered the contentions and perused the impugned judgment and other materials on record.
8.Section 18 of the Domestic Violence Act relates to protection order. In terms of Section 18 of the Act, intention of the legislature is to provide more protection to woman. Section 20 of the Act empowers the court to order for monetary relief to the “aggrieved party”. When acts of domestic violence is alleged, before issuing notice, the court has to be prima facie satisfied that there have been instances of domestic violence.
9.In the present case, the respondent has made allegations of domestic violence against fourteen appellants. Appellant No.14 is the husband and appellants No.1 and 2 are the
10are the wives of appellants No.3, 5 and 9 respectively.
Appellants No.7 and 8 are the parents of appellant No.1. Appellants No.1 to 6 and 14 are residents of Chennai. Appellants No.7 to 10 are the residents of State of Rajasthan and appellants No.11 to 13 are the residents of State of Gujarat. Admittedly, the matrimonial house of the respondent and appellant No.1 has been at Chennai. Insofar as appellant
10.Insofar as the jurisdiction of the Bengaluru Court, as pointed out by the High Court, Section 27 of the Protection of Women from
Domestic Violence Act, 2005 covers the situation. Section 27 of the Act reads as under:-
27. Jurisdiction –
(1)The court of Judicial Magistrate of the first class or the Metropolitan Magistrate, as the case may be, within the local limits of which –
(a)the person aggrieved permanently or temporarily resides or carries on business or is employed; or
(b)the respondent resides or carries on business or is employed;
(c)the cause of action has arisen, shall be the competent court to grant a protection order and other orders under this Act and to try
offences under this Act
(2)Any order made under this Act shall be enforceable throughout India.
A plain reading of the above provision makes it clear that the petition under the Domestic Violence Act can be filed in a court where the “person aggrieved” permanently or temporarily resides or carries on business or is employed. In the present case, the respondent is residing with her parents within the territorial limits of Metropolitan Magistrate Court, Bengaluru. In view of Section 27(1)
(a)of the Act, the Metropolitan Magistrate court, Bengaluru has the jurisdiction to entertain the complaint and take cognizance of the offence. There is no merit in the contention raising objection as to the jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Magistrate Court at Bengaluru.
11.In the result, Crl. Misc. No.53 of 2015 filed against the appellants No.3 to 13 is quashed and this appeal is partly allowed. The learned VI Additional Metropolitan Magistrate at Bengaluru shall proceed with Crl. Misc. No.53 of 2015 against appellants No.1, 2 and 14 and dispose the same in accordance with law. We make it clear that we have not expressed any opinion on the merits of the matter.
January 22, 2020.