Venkat Perumal v State of Andhra Pradesh

Is a judgment passed by the Andhra Pradesh High Court on an application filed by an NRI husband for quashing of the proceedings of the wife’s complaint in Hyderabad under Section 498 of the IPC against matrimonial cruelty meted out to her. She had alleged that she was subjected to harassment, humiliation, and torture during her short stay at Madras as well as the US and when she refused to accept the request of her husband to terminate her pregnancy, she was dropped penniless by her husband at Dallas airport in the US and she returned back to India with the assistance of her aunt and on account of the humiliation and mental agony she suffered miscarriage at Hyderabad.

The High Court held that the offense under Section 498-A of IPC is a continuing offense and the mental harassment on the wife had continued during the stay with her parents at Hyderabad. The court therefore rejected contention of the husband that sanction of the Central Government, as contemplated under Section 188 of the Code, is required to prosecute and held that even otherwise, it is not a condition precedent to initiating criminal proceedings and the same can be obtained, if need be, during trial and hence, it could not be said that the proceedings were liable to be quashed on that ground.

The Court also refused to influence its decision with the divorce decree from the US court produced by the husband since in any case the FIR had been lodged by the wife before the UC court’s decree.