KOZHIKODE: The law introduced to protect women from domestic violence has turned an eyewash because most of the cases prolong for a number of years.
Officials as well as activists say that separate courts are needed for speedy disposal of cases so that justice is not denied to the victims.
According to the data sourced from the women protection office, of the 529 cases received till the end of October this year, only in two cases compensation was ordered. Resident order was served in 11 cases and protection order in 54 cases. The data is incomplete, but shows a significant trend in society, said district women protection officer A.K. Lincy.
"Like in the case of POCSO, separate courts to deal with domestic violence would be helpful in disposing of pending cases," she added.
Advocate P.P. Sapna, who leads an NGO 'Punarjani' that gives free legal aid for destitute women, said that the law's purpose is lost when the women are denied resident order on the basis of the ownership of the residence. "The Domestic Violence Act 2005 states about only domestic relationship and not even marriage. The couple does not have to be married to live under the same roof and avail of the benefit of this law. It might be the first law that accepted the concept of living together in the country. Still, in many cases, the women are denied even the resident order on the ground that the house does not belong to her husband," said Ms Sapna.
In many cases, the provisions in the Act are misused when husbands, who own the house, transfer it in the name of his relatives to avoid giving shelter to the victim, she said....