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Presents Gifted By Parents For Daughter’s Welfare Not Dowry: Kerala High Court

Socio Legal Corp

By – Arshita Anand

The Kerala High Court has declared that gifts provided to the bride for her wellbeing at the time of her marriage will not be considered dowry under the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961.

Allowing a petition brought by a disgruntled spouse to be heard,

“…presents given at the time of marriage to the bride without any demand having made in that behalf and which have been entered in a list maintained in accordance with rules made under this Act will not come within the purview of Section 3(1) which prohibits giving or taking of dowry. “

Deepthi K.S, the 4th respondent in this case, is the petitioner’s husband. He married Deepthi in 2020, according to the petitioner, in accordance with Hindu rites and norms. They lived together as husband and wife at the petitioner’s home after their marriage.

It was submitted that the 4th respondent’s relatives stored all of her jewels in the couple’s name in a bank locker. Deepthi was also in possession of the key to this locker.

The petitioner stated that the District Dowry Prohibition Officer lacked jurisdiction to hear the case because the accusation was that the ornaments given to her for her well-being were held in a bank locker and had not yet been returned.

“In the absence of such finding, the Dowry Prohibition Officer will not get any jurisdiction to give direction under Rule 6(xv). Hence the impugned order passed is not sustainable in law and is hereby quashed.” “In the absence of such finding, the Dowry Prohibition Officer will not get any jurisdiction to give direction under Rule 6(xv). Hence the impugned order passed is not sustainable in law and is hereby quashed.”

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