Woman has right of residence in ‘shared household’ of in-laws

• SC ruled that woman will have the right to residence in the shared house even if it was rented or owned by the in-laws and the husband had no ownership right over it.

• Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act (DVA), 2005 defines shared household as the place where the woman lives or at any stage has lived in a domestic
relationship either singly or along with the husband and it includes the house “owned or tenanted”.

About DVA, 2005:

• It is a civil law which focuses on the reliefs given to the aggrieved woman such as compensation, protection, right to residence in the “shared household” etc.

• It gives the legal definition of “Domestic Violence” which includes four categories of
abuse namely: physical, sexual, verbal/emotional and economic.

• It protects married women, women in live-in relationships, as well as family members including mothers, grandmothers etc.

Earlier Important judgments on DVA:

• DVA intends to safeguard women against marital abuse, will apply even after divorce.

• Woman can also file a complaint against another woman, accusing her of domestic violence.

• Granting maintenance does not depend on wife’s earning.

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Mains Paper 2: Polity

Prelims level: Domestic Violence Act

Mains level: Social Justice

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