The High Court of Jharkhand recently comprising of a bench of Justice Anubha Rawat Choudhary observed that although the physical cruelty committed in the house of marriage may not have stopped and those actions do not take place in a family home it may not be clear that the psychological trauma and distress caused by the actions of the husband, which, if any, obliged the woman to leave the house of the marriage and shelter with her parents, will continue to persist at the parental home. (Amrendra Kumar vs The State of Jharkhand)

While relying on the supreme court case Rupali Devi Vs. State of Uttar Pradesh and Others it was held, “Cruelty can be both physical or mental cruelty. The impact on the mental health of the wife by overt acts on the part of the husband or his relatives; the mental stress and trauma of being driven away from the matrimonial home and her helplessness to go back to the same home for fear of being ill-treated are aspects that cannot be ignored while understanding the meaning of the expression “cruelty” appearing in Section 498-A of the Penal Code.”

The court while dismissing the petition further observed, “even if the acts of physical cruelty committed in the matrimonial house may have ceased and such acts do not occur at the parental home, there can be no doubt that the mental trauma and the psychological distress caused by the acts of the husband including verbal exchanges, if any, that had compelled the wife to leave the matrimonial home and take shelter with her parents would continue to persist at the parental home.”

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