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Delhi High Court observes that women police officers can be victims of domestic violence

Delhi High Court Stresses Gender Neutrality in Domestic Violence Cases

The Delhi High Court recently emphasized that police officers can also be victims of domestic violence, urging courts to avoid gender-based or stereotypical perceptions associated with any profession. This observation came in a case where the sessions court had discharged a man from charges of cruelty towards his wife, both of whom were police officers.

Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma of the High Court emphasized that courts should not rely on stereotypes when framing criminal charges, highlighting the need for gender-neutral decision-making. The court noted that assuming a police officer cannot be a victim of domestic violence is unjust and biased.

The High Court criticized the lower court’s decision to discharge the accused based on the profession of the complainant, overlooking specific allegations of dowry demand and torture. Justice Sharma stressed the importance of recognizing the complexities of domestic violence cases involving empowered women.

The court emphasized the need for gender sensitivity in judicial education, urging the Delhi Judicial Academy to include topics like gender equality and cultural diversity in its curriculum and continuous education programs.

Advocate Divjot Singh Bhatia represented the petitioner (complainant), while the State was represented by Additional Public Prosecutor Naresh Kumar Chahar. Advocate Gautam Das appeared for the accused.

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