On August 3 this year, a 24-year-old woman died of suicide at her Antop Hill home in Mumbai. The reason cited by her mother was “financial ill-treatment” by her husband and in-laws. The man, who works as a banker in the city, was subsequently booked on charges of abetment of suicide.
The court, however, granted bail to the accused husband and his family by observing that he had not only taken care of the victim, but everybody surrounding her, right from her mother, to siblings, and even his brother-in-law’s pet cat.
The husband said that they had a love marriage. Elaborating about the household expenses, he told court that as they were both working individuals, they used to share the expenses jointly. The man also said that he was supportive of his wife when she lost her job.
Not just this, the couple had also moved closer to the woman’s maternal home for a while because the wife had insisted.
Speaking about financial expenses, the husband was able to demonstrate how he not just supported his wife monetarily, but also took care of her family’s expenses. He presented all documents as evidences in the court.
The man would spend money on food for his wife’s family and also used to pay rent and gas bills for them. He used to spend Rs 2000 extra for the pet cat that his brother-in-law had adopted.
The victim’s mother alleged that her daughter had taken a loan of Rs 3.5 lakh for her sister-in-law’s wedding, and later was forced to pay the EMI for the same. Calling out her son-in-law, the complainant also alleged that the man had beaten the victim in May. Thereafter, the cops had arrested the husband and in-laws on charges of abetment to suicide and cruelty.
Verifying the statements and evidence on record, the court observed:
Considering the nature of the FIR, the other circumstances which are brought on record, wherein it is shown the husband, time and again, was depositing money in her account, sending money to her brother and sister, helping the sister-in-law financially, cannot be said to be the ground ill-treatment.
Adding further, the court said,
This cannot be said to be the source to abet the suicide of the deceased.
The deceased woman was allegedly disturbed as she had lost her job during the pandemic. After her death, her mother had accused the banker son-in-law and his parents of abetting her suicide.
Seeking anticipatory bail for himself and family, the man told court that even a single day in jail would cost him his job. He also argued that his wife was emotional by nature and had attempted suicide before her marriage as well. The mother of the victim and her lawyer did not refute this claim.
A conversation between the mother and the victim, just a day before the incident also did not mention any chat about torture or demand of dowry by the husband or his family. The court observed,
Nowhere (in the mobile conversation) has she spoken about any demand for money, dowry, harassment or cruelty by the applicants.
Hence, giving relief to the man and his family, the court granted them interim bail.
Suicide Prevention Contact Details:
Men in distress due to family problems and threats of false cases can contact either of the NGOs listed here: Men Welfare Trust, MyNation Hope Foundation, Save Indian Family Foundation, Vaastav Foundation