Supreme Court of India: No Automatic Arrests in 498A Cases


here is the judgment that made waves over the last few days. I’ll have more to say later, but for the moment, here is the judgment from the Supreme Court’s website:

Here are links to the judgement:

I hoped that Ranjana Kumari and the Indian commie dimwits will keep this peace, but I should have known better. They are back peddling their bullshit again, opposing this judgment. You can read about what they have to say here:

I will have a few things to say about the stand of these dimwits later.


Supreme Court of India
Arnesh Kumar vs State Of Bihar & Anr on 2 July, 2014
Bench: Chandramauli Kr. Prasad, Pinaki Chandra Ghose





(@SPECIAL LEAVE PETITION (CRL.) No.9127 of 2013)





Chandramauli Kr. Prasad

The petitioner apprehends his arrest in a case under Section 498-A of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (hereinafter called as IPC) and Section 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961. The maximum sentence provided under Section 498-A IPC is imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and fine whereas the maximum sentence provided under Section 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act is two years and with fine.

Petitioner happens to be the husband of respondent no.2 Sweta Kiran. The marriage between them was solemnized on 1st July, 2007. His attempt to secure anticipatory bail has failed and hence he has knocked the door of this Court by way of this Special Leave Petition.

Leave granted.

In sum and substance, allegation levelled by the wife against the appellant is that demand of Rupees eight lacs, a maruti car, an air-conditioner, television set etc. was made by her mother-in-law and father-in-law and when this fact was brought to the appellant’s notice, he supported his mother and threatened to marry another woman. It has been alleged that she was driven out of the matrimonial home due to non- fulfilment of the demand of dowry.

Denying these allegations, the appellant preferred an application for anticipatory bail which was earlier rejected by the learned Sessions Judge and thereafter by the High Court.

There is phenomenal increase in matrimonial disputes in recent years. The institution of marriage is greatly revered in this country. Section 498-A of the IPC was introduced with avowed object to combat the menace of harassment to a woman at the hands of her husband and his relatives. The fact that Section 498-A is a cognizable and non-bailable offence has lent it a dubious place of pride amongst the provisions that are used as weapons rather than shield by disgruntled wives. The simplest way to harass is to get the husband and his relatives arrested under this provision. In a quite number of cases, bed-ridden grand-fathers and grand-mothers of the husbands, their sisters living abroad for decades are arrested. “Crime in India 2012 Statistics. published by National Crime Records Bureau, Ministry of Home Affairs shows arrest of 1,97,762 persons all over India during the year 2012 for offence under Section 498-A of the IPC, 9.4% more than the year 2011. Nearly a quarter of those arrested under this provision in 2012 were women i.e. 47,951 which depicts that mothers and sisters of the husbands were liberally included in their arrest net. Its share is 6% out of the total persons arrested under the crimes committed under Indian Penal Code. It accounts for 4.5% of total crimes committed under different sections of penal code, more than any other crimes excepting theft and hurt. The rate of charge-sheeting in cases under Section 498A, IPC is as high as 93.6%, while the conviction rate is only 15%, which is lowest across all heads. As many as 3,72,706 cases are pending trial of which on current estimate, nearly 3,17,000 are likely to result in acquittal.

Arrest brings humiliation, curtails freedom and cast scars forever. Law makers know it so also the police. There is a battle between the law makers and the police and it seems that police has not learnt its lesson; the lesson implicit and embodied in the Cr.PC. It has not come out of its colonial image despite six decades of independence, it is largely considered as a tool of harassment, oppression and surely not considered a friend of public. The need for caution in exercising the drastic power of arrest has been emphasized time and again by Courts but has not yielded desired result. Power to arrest greatly contributes to its arrogance so also the failure of the Magistracy to check it. Not only this, the power of arrest is one of the lucrative sources of police corruption. The attitude to arrest first and then proceed with the rest is despicable. It has become a handy tool to the police officers who lack sensitivity or act with oblique motive.

Law Commissions, Police Commissions and this Court in a large number of judgments emphasized the need to maintain a balance between individual liberty and societal order while exercising the power of arrest. Police officers make arrest as they believe that they possess the power to do so. As the arrest curtails freedom, brings humiliation and casts scars forever, we feel differently. We believe that no arrest should be made only because the offence is non-bailable and cognizable and therefore, lawful for the police officers to do so. The existence of the power to arrest is one thing, the justification for the exercise of it is quite another. Apart from power to arrest, the police officers must be able to justify the reasons thereof. No arrest can be made in a routine manner on a mere allegation of commission of an offence made against a person. It would be prudent and wise for a police officer that no arrest is made without a reasonable satisfaction reached after some investigation as to the genuineness of the allegation. Despite this legal position, the Legislature did not find any improvement. Numbers of arrest have not decreased. Ultimately, the Parliament had to intervene and on the recommendation of the 177th Report of the Law Commission submitted in the year 2001, Section 41 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (for short ‘Cr.PC), in the present form came to be enacted. It is interesting to note that such a recommendation was made by the Law Commission in its 152nd and 154th Report submitted as back in the year 1994. The value of the proportionality permeates the amendment relating to arrest. As the offence with which we are concerned in the present appeal, provides for a maximum punishment of imprisonment which may extend to seven years and fine, Section 41(1)(b), Cr.PC which is relevant for the purpose reads as follows:

“41. When police may arrest without warrant.-(1) Any police officer may without an order from a Magistrate and without a warrant, arrest any person –

(a)x x x x x x

(b)against whom a reasonable complaint has been made, or credible information has been received, or a reasonable suspicion exists that he has committed a cognizable offence punishable with imprisonment for a term which may be less than seven years or which may extend to seven years whether with or without fine, if the following conditions are satisfied, namely :-

(i) x x x x x

(ii) the police officer is satisfied that such arrest is necessary “

to prevent such person from committing any further offence; or

for proper investigation of the offence; or

to prevent such person from causing the evidence of the offence to disappear or tampering with such evidence in any manner; or

to prevent such person from making any inducement, threat or promise to any person acquainted with the facts of the case so as to dissuade him from disclosing such facts to the Court or to the police officer; or

as unless such person is arrested, his presence in the Court whenever required cannot be ensured,

and the police officer shall record while making such arrest, his reasons in writing:

Provided that a police officer shall, in all cases where the arrest of a person is not required under the provisions of this sub-section, record the reasons in writing for not making the arrest.

X x x x x x

From a plain reading of the aforesaid provision, it is evident that a person accused of offence punishable with imprisonment for a term which may be less than seven years or which may extend to seven years with or without fine, cannot be arrested by the police officer only on its satisfaction that such person had committed the offence punishable as aforesaid. Police officer before arrest, in such cases has to be further satisfied that such arrest is necessary to prevent such person from committing any further offence; or for proper investigation of the case; or to prevent the accused from causing the evidence of the offence to disappear; or tampering with such evidence in any manner; or to prevent such person from making any inducement, threat or promise to a witness so as to dissuade him from disclosing such facts to the Court or the police officer; or unless such accused person is arrested, his presence in the court whenever required cannot be ensured. These are the conclusions, which one may reach based on facts. Law mandates the police officer to state the facts and record the reasons in writing which led him to come to a conclusion covered by any of the provisions aforesaid, while making such arrest. Law further requires the police officers to record the reasons in writing for not making the arrest. In pith and core, the police office before arrest must put a question to himself, why arrest? Is it really required? What purpose it will serve? What object it will achieve? It is only after these questions are addressed and one or the other conditions as enumerated above is satisfied, the power of arrest needs to be exercised. In fine, before arrest first the police officers should have reason to believe on the basis of information and material that the accused has committed the offence. Apart from this, the police officer has to be satisfied further that the arrest is necessary for one or the more purposes envisaged by sub-clauses (a) to (e) of clause (1) of Section 41 of Cr.PC.

An accused arrested without warrant by the police has the constitutional right under Article 22(2) of the Constitution of India and Section 57, Cr.PC to be produced before the Magistrate without unnecessary delay and in no circumstances beyond 24 hours excluding the time necessary for the journey. During the course of investigation of a case, an accused can be kept in detention beyond a period of 24 hours only when it is authorised by the Magistrate in exercise of power under Section 167 Cr.PC. The power to authorise detention is a very solemn function. It affects the liberty and freedom of citizens and needs to be exercised with great care and caution. Our experience tells us that it is not exercised with the seriousness it deserves. In many of the cases, detention is authorised in a routine, casual and cavalier manner. Before a Magistrate authorises detention under Section 167, Cr.PC, he has to be first satisfied that the arrest made is legal and in accordance with law and all the constitutional rights of the person arrested is satisfied. If the arrest effected by the police officer does not satisfy the requirements of Section 41 of the Code, Magistrate is duty bound not to authorise his further detention and release the accused. In other words, when an accused is produced before the Magistrate, the police officer effecting the arrest is required to furnish to the Magistrate, the facts, reasons and its conclusions for arrest and the Magistrate in turn is to be satisfied that condition precedent for arrest under Section 41 Cr.PC has been satisfied and it is only thereafter that he will authorise the detention of an accused. The Magistrate before authorising detention will record its own satisfaction, may be in brief but the said satisfaction must reflect from its order. It shall never be based upon the ipse dixit of the police officer, for example, in case the police officer considers the arrest necessary to prevent such person from committing any further offence or for proper investigation of the case or for preventing an accused from tampering with evidence or making inducement etc., the police officer shall furnish to the Magistrate the facts, the reasons and materials on the basis of which the police officer had reached its conclusion. Those shall be perused by the Magistrate while authorising the detention and only after recording its satisfaction in writing that the Magistrate will authorise the detention of the accused. In fine, when a suspect is arrested and produced before a Magistrate for authorising detention, the Magistrate has to address the question whether specific reasons have been recorded for arrest and if so, prima facie those reasons are relevant and secondly a reasonable conclusion could at all be reached by the police officer that one or the other conditions stated above are attracted. To this limited extent the Magistrate will make judicial scrutiny.

Another provision i.e. Section 41A Cr.PC aimed to avoid unnecessary arrest or threat of arrest looming large on accused requires to be vitalised. Section 41A as inserted by Section 6 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2008(Act 5 of 2009), which is relevant in the context reads as follows:

“41A. Notice of appearance before police officer.-(1) The police officer shall, in all cases where the arrest of a person is not required under the provisions of sub-section (1) of Section 41, issue a notice directing the person against whom a reasonable complaint has been made, or credible information has been received, or a reasonable suspicion exists that he has committed a cognizable offence, to appear before him or at such other place as may be specified in the notice.

(2) Where such a notice is issued to any person, it shall be the duty of that person to comply with the terms of the notice.

(3) Where such person complies and continues to comply with the notice, he shall not be arrested in respect of the offence referred to in the notice unless, for reasons to be recorded, the police officer is of the opinion that he ought to be arrested.

(4) Where such person, at any time, fails to comply with the terms of the notice or is unwilling to identify himself, the police officer may, subject to such orders as may have been passed by a competent Court in this behalf, arrest him for the offence mentioned in the notice.

Aforesaid provision makes it clear that in all cases where the arrest of a person is not required under Section 41(1), Cr.PC, the police officer is required to issue notice directing the accused to appear before him at a specified place and time. Law obliges such an accused to appear before the police officer and it further mandates that if such an accused complies with the terms of notice he shall not be arrested, unless for reasons to be recorded, the police office is of the opinion that the arrest is necessary. At this stage also, the condition precedent for arrest as envisaged under Section 41 Cr.PC has to be complied and shall be subject to the same scrutiny by the Magistrate as aforesaid.

We are of the opinion that if the provisions of Section 41, Cr.PC which authorises the police officer to arrest an accused without an order from a Magistrate and without a warrant are scrupulously enforced, the wrong committed by the police officers intentionally or unwittingly would be reversed and the number of cases which come to the Court for grant of anticipatory bail will substantially reduce. We would like to emphasise that the practice of mechanically reproducing in the case diary all or most of the reasons contained in Section 41 Cr.PC for effecting arrest be discouraged and discontinued.

Our endeavour in this judgment is to ensure that police officers do not arrest accused unnecessarily and Magistrate do not authorise detention casually and mechanically. In order to ensure what we have observed above, we give the following direction:

All the State Governments to instruct its police officers not to automatically arrest when a case under Section 498-A of the IPC is registered but to satisfy themselves about the necessity for arrest under the parameters laid down above flowing from Section 41, Cr.PC;

All police officers be provided with a check list containing specified sub- clauses under Section 41(1)(b)(ii);

The police officer shall forward the check list duly filed and furnish the reasons and materials which necessitated the arrest, while forwarding/producing the accused before the Magistrate for further detention;

The Magistrate while authorising detention of the accused shall peruse the report furnished by the police officer in terms aforesaid and only after recording its satisfaction, the Magistrate will authorise detention;

The decision not to arrest an accused, be forwarded to the Magistrate within two weeks from the date of the institution of the case with a copy to the Magistrate which may be extended by the Superintendent of police of the district for the reasons to be recorded in writing;

Notice of appearance in terms of Section 41A of Cr.PC be served on the accused within two weeks from the date of institution of the case, which may be extended by the Superintendent of Police of the District for the reasons to be recorded in writing;

Failure to comply with the directions aforesaid shall apart from rendering the police officers concerned liable for departmental action, they shall also be liable to be punished for contempt of court to be instituted before High Court having territorial jurisdiction.

Authorising detention without recording reasons as aforesaid by the judicial Magistrate concerned shall be liable for departmental action by the appropriate High Court.

We hasten to add that the directions aforesaid shall not only apply to the cases under Section 498-A of the I.P.C. or Section 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, the case in hand, but also such cases where offence is punishable with imprisonment for a term which may be less than seven years or which may extend to seven years; whether with or without fine.

We direct that a copy of this judgment be forwarded to the Chief Secretaries as also the Director Generals of Police of all the State Governments and the Union Territories and the Registrar General of all the High Courts for onward transmission and ensuring its compliance.

By order dated 31st of October, 2013, this Court had granted provisional bail to the appellant on certain conditions. We make this order absolute.

In the result, we allow this appeal, making our aforesaid order dated 31st October, 2013 absolute; with the directions aforesaid.






July 2, 2014.

15 Responses to “Supreme Court of India: No Automatic Arrests in 498A Cases”

  1. 1 AamAdmi July 7, 2014 at 4:33 am

    At least the genuine cases will get time to get discussed. The fake cases were killing time of the court and innocent people were suffering earlier. Good decision, innocent people from husband side will breathe now.


  2. 2 Ravikant July 7, 2014 at 7:03 am

    My self Ravikant Rathod working as deputy Manager. My marriage was took place on 26.06.2011 after 3 months I send my wife for further studies ie MBA to Bangalore I paid all her college fees and during her studies. but after completions of her studies she not coming to my work place no she staying with het patent at belgaum Karnataka, I filled a petition against conjugal rights. for that she has filled me case aganist maintenance of rs 20000 per month. I submitted document of her college fees paid by me to the court. what court will give decision. still I want my wife back to her to my work place


    • 3 SWAT Team - Anti Terrorism Group August 19, 2014 at 4:53 pm

      I understand your Situation 😦 …what cases are filed ?


      • 4 Ravikant August 26, 2014 at 5:47 am

        Good Morning sir,

        The cades we have filled are
        1. petition of U/S of the Hindu Marriage act
        2. objection of the application field U/S of 240F of the hindu marriage act 1995

        With Respectful Regards

        Ravikant Rathod


      • 5 Ravikant August 26, 2014 at 9:34 am

        Dear sir,
        I filled matrimonial before the principle of civil judge at bagalkot, Karnataka state for the restitutional of conjugal right under the section 9 of Hindu marriage act 1956 case no is 12/2013

        Sir please help in regarding this case


        Ravikant Rathod.

        Deputy Manager Electrical
        Birla Industries.


  3. 6 dragarwal October 18, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    Very good blog, I am also bearing the false 498a/DV case. Could you please drop me a test mail so that I can send my documents and ask specific questions. Thanks


    • 7 San December 30, 2014 at 1:27 pm

      Hi, ,How can I know if my Brother has RCN against him.Last time when he visited india while coming back he was asked by the immigration officer at airport if he has any cases pending in India but later he let him go.This incident has caused him to worry and think if he has RCN but we are not sure.Kindly let us know if there is any procedure to avail information on this.Our lawyer is not giving any clear picture


  4. 8 Jayaprakash Balan October 30, 2014 at 6:42 am

    My brother’s marriage is not working inspite of the couple staying together for 7 months. There has been frequent fights, but as such no physical abuse or harrassment. We feel his wife is having a paranoia illness due to which she has suspicious behaviour and emotional outburst at intervals and threating suicide or killing my brother. She doesn’t want to stay in a joint family and want to stay alone with my brother whereas my brother doesn’t want to leave his mother and his brothers and family. For this, my brother’s wife has been creating scenes and unrest in the house and now is accussing my mother and my wife of mental torture and harrassment. We have never asked or demanded for anything during marriage. Both of theirs is a second marriage. In fact, all the while, we have been trying to reconcile to save their marriage. But due to frequent outburst and her threatening, we have left her at her house and asked her to take a decision after discussion with her family members. She had willingly agreed to go. Since then she is at her house. She is carrying 3 months. Now we fear she would file a 498a case against my brother and our family. My brother is not confident to have a life with her alone and as such desiring to be seperated. Can my brother and my family be arrested just based on a complaint filed by my brother’s wife and family and that too after staying away from us since past 3 weeks. How can we save ourselves from this?


  5. 9 akash November 2, 2014 at 6:43 am

    How do you contact the owner of this blog? Is there an email id?


  6. 10 Ruchika M. Bhardwaj November 9, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    Hi Friends,
    My cousin cheated conspiracy of full planed marriage, for blackmailing & generating money, after two month of marriage girl move to their own home due to custom rituals, but after two month she denied to return back and starting false allegation my uncle and aunty trying to convince her but she she denied to comeback after two year my uncle lodge a case of Conjugal Rights of Marriage but party did not present on court after passing 2 years .
    My Uncle file habeas corpus then girl present on court and denied to return.
    After one month girl counter file 498A on behalf of domestic cruelty.
    My uncle and their family suffered a lot, my uncle is a very simple people they don’t know abut trick and tactics about advocate, that advocate mislead him, and start date 1 and after 1 half time period, finally my cousin convicted judge told to my uncle I know your son is innocent but I had pressure make arrangement for bail advocate of other site treating as middle man of blackmailing if you pay such amount then she will return their case. my cousin got bail same day.
    Advocate of my uncle side trying to stay one day more due to some paper work. 2nd day case was move on session court, constable of judges court was demanding money again behalf of girl.
    Judge was keeping same decision without seeing file because judgements notation point did not matched entire process of court in past.
    now my cousin on bail from high court, continue endless fighting for last 14 years
    for 2 month marriage pay entire life of this mistake.
    I have decided bachelor life for better in compare to such wild and bitter married life.
    I have promised to my uncle non disclosed of anything, but I am looking for some solution without outer court settlement. Is there any way for solving this matter? can my uncle move further supreme court,
    High Court advocate suggest if moves to fast track court my cousin definitely get penalty because he convicted from two court.

    Thanks for reading
    Ruchika Bhardwas
    (writing behalf of my uncle and brother)


  7. 11 Sourish Ghosh December 12, 2014 at 8:03 am

    Hi Friend,

    I need a good lawyer to fight a 498a case which has been proved false but yet the current lawyer is asking to pay alimony for divorce. I really need your help to find a good and honest lawyer in Calcutta/Kolkata who will fight for the truth. Can you send me some contacts/numbers/names.
    Any help will be most appreciated. My emails ID is

    Thanks and Regards,


  8. 14 Nawin May 24, 2015 at 9:51 am

    This Nawin and I am from Bihar and currently working in Bangalore as an software engineer and currently my parents are in my native place staying their.
    I got married on 10 July 2014. I was staying in Bangalore with my parents.
    After 3 to 4 month of my marriage, due to my wife’s abnormal & inappropriate behaviour (mentally)towards me and my parents we have been harassed by her like any thing due to this we have sent her back to her father place.

    Since then, I am staying separately from my wife and parents (I didn’t had any relationship with my wife since my marriage.) .. Since my parents are their they are threatening my parents for false dowry case .. I have not taken any dowry from them we didn’t demanded any thing. Her Relatives and parent are threatening to kill my parents and file a false dowry case and forcing us to take take her daughter with us.

    Please advice me


  1. 1 option trading basics Trackback on May 10, 2015 at 5:26 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Visitors Since Mar/14/07

  • 3,331,532

Cluster Map

Live Traffic


Top Rated Posts

Some Interesting Stats On Arrests Of Women

In 1930, the British govt arrested 17,000 women for their involvement in the Dandi Yatra (Salt March). During 1937 to 1947 (10 Years), they arrested 5,000 women involved in the freedom struggle. From 2004 to 2006, the govt of India arrested 90,000 women of all ages under 498A. On the average, 27,000 women per year are being arrested under this flawed law. These are stats from the NCRB.

Copyright Notice:

The content of this blog is copyrighted. You are required to obtain prior permission before locally hosting or reproducing online or in print, any or part of the content. You are welcome to directly link to the content from your site. Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape Registered & Protected Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.


The family of the writer was tortured by the Indian Police in an attempt to extort over a $100,000 by holding them in custody for over a week. The police, in cahoots with the magistrate and the PP, did this due to the ridiculous allegations made in a 498A case by his embittered ex-wife. She filed the case years after he and his family had last seen her. Thousands of 498A cases are filed each year in India by women seeking to wreak vengeance on their husbands and in-laws. Enormous sums are extorted from intimidated families implicated in these cases by corrupt Indian police officers and elements of the Indian judiciary. The author and his family haven't bribed any public official nor have they given in to the extortion. This blog aims to raise awareness of due process in India. The content of this blog constitutes, opinions, observations, and publicly available documents. The intent is not to slander or defame anyone or any institution and is the manifestation of the author's right to freedom of expression – with all the protections this right guarantees.

Get Adobe Acrobat Reader

You will need adobe acrobat to read most of the documents. Please download adobe acrobat reader. Get Adobe Acrobat For Your System
July 2014

%d bloggers like this: