Right to reside in a shared household:
The Domestic Violence Act ‘2005 secures a woman’s right to reside in the matrimonial or shared household even if she has no title or rights in the household. A part of the house can be allotted to her for her personal use. A court can pass a residence order to secure her right of residence in the household.
PROCEDURE OF FILING COMPLAINT AND THE COURT’S DUTY UNDER DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ACT ‘2005
• The court is required to take cognizance of the complaint by instituting a hearing within three days of the complaint being filed in the court.
• The Magistrate shall give a notice of the date of hearing to the Protection Officer to be served on the Respondent and such other persons as directed by the Magistrate, within a maximum period of 2 days or such further reasonable time as allowed by the Magistrate.
• The court is required to dispose of the case within 60 days of the first hearing.
• The court, to establish the offence by the Respondent can use the sole testimony of the aggrieved person.
• Upon finding the complaint genuine, the court can pass a Protection Order, which shall remain in force till the aggrieved person applies for discharge. If upon receipt of an application from the aggrieved person, the Magistrate is satisfied that the circumstances so require, he may alter, modify or revoke an order after recording the reasons in writing.
• A complaint can also be filed under Section 498 A of the Indian Penal Code, which defines the offence of matrimonial cruelty and prescribes the punishment for the husband of a woman or his relative who subjects her to cruelty.
• For Protection Officer: If he fails or does not discharge his duties as directed by the Magistrate without any sufficient cause, he will be liable for having committed an offence under the Domestic Violence Act ‘2005 with similar punishment. However, he cannot be penalized without the prior sanction of the state government. Moreover, the law protects him for all actions taken by him in good faith.