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May 21 @ 7:00 am - 11:30 pm


The Supreme Court made significant observations while ruling on a petition filed by a husband against the Punjab and Haryana High Court’s decision. 

These observations provide guidance on approaching marital disputes, emphasizing caution and alternative methods of resolution. 

Key Observations: 

Caution Against Mechanical Application of Section 498A IPC: 

  • The judgment cautions against the mechanical application of Section 498A (domestic cruelty) of the Indian Penal Code. 
  • It stresses the need for a “complete” domestic violence case, including elements like criminal intimidation or causing significant harm. 

Call for Review of Sections 85 and 86 of Bhartiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023: 

  • The Supreme Court urges Parliament to review Sections 85 and 86, which entail imprisonment of up to three years, similar to Section 498A IPC. 
  • This review aims to prevent misuse or fake cases and ensure justice is served appropriately. 

Recognition of Detrimental Impact of Divorce on Children: 

  • The judgment acknowledges that divorce can have a detrimental impact on a child’s upbringing, especially when initiated hastily due to criminal proceedings. 
  • This emphasizes the importance of considering the well-being of children in marital disputes. 

Encouragement for Careful Consideration by High Courts: 

  • High Courts are encouraged to carefully consider all aspects and circumstances before deciding on pleas to quash criminal proceedings arising from marital issues. 
  • This underscores the need for a thorough examination of each case to ensure justice is served fairly. 

Alternative Ways to Resolve Matrimonial Disputes: 

  • Mediation: Involves a neutral third-party facilitating communication and negotiation between spouses to reach a mutually agreeable solution. 
  • Conciliation: Similar to mediation but with the conciliator proposing solutions and guiding the couple towards an agreement. 
  • Arbitration: Involves a private arbitrator chosen by both parties hearing arguments and delivering a binding decision on the dispute. 
  • Legal institutions such as Family Courts and Gram Nyayalayas also promote conciliation and provide speedy resolution of disputes related to marriage and family affairs. 


Way Forward: 

  • Parliamentary Review: Parliament should consider reviewing Sections 85 and 86 of Bhartiya Nyaya Sanhita to prevent misuse and ensure justice. 
  • Promotion of Reconciliation: Efforts should focus on reconciliation before legal action to minimize police intervention in marital disputes. 
  • Strengthening ADR Mechanisms: Proper training of mediators and conciliators is essential to handle sensitive marital issues effectively. 
  • Regulation of Unregulated ADR Mechanisms: Mechanisms like Khap Panchayats should be regulated and reformed to prevent unjust practices. 
  • Public Awareness: There is a need to raise public awareness about legal rights and ADR options for peaceful dispute resolution. 
  • Accessible Mental Health Services: Proper mechanisms should be established to provide accessible mental health services to couples facing marital discord. 


The Supreme Court’s observations advocate for a nuanced approach to marital disputes, prioritizing reconciliation, and tolerance over immediate legal action.  

By emphasizing caution and alternative methods of resolution, the court aims to prevent misuse of laws and safeguard the well-being of spouses and children involved in marital disputes. 

Mains Question: 

  1. “How does the recent Supreme Court judgment on matrimonial disputes advocate for a nuanced approach and emphasize alternative methods of resolution over immediate legal action?” (150 WORDS)


May 21
7:00 am - 11:30 pm
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