The Crime under Indian Penal Code (IPC)

  1. Rape (Section 376 IPC)
  2. Kidnapping & abduction for the specified purpose (Section 363-373 IPC)

Homicide for dowry(dowry death) or their attempts (Sec. 302/304-B IPC)

  1. Torture both mental and physical (Sec.498-A –IPC)
  2. Sexual Harassment (Sec. 509 IPC)
  3. Importing girls up to 21 years of age  (Sec. 366-B IPC)

Gender-specific laws

Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956

Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961

Special Marriage Act, 1954

Maternity Benefit Act,1861

Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971

Equal Remuneration Act, 1976

Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013

Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986

Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act, 1987

What is Section 498A?

Section 498A in The Indian Penal Code

Husband or relative of husband of a woman who is subjecting her to cruelty shall be punished with imprisonment for a term, and it may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine.

To give more clarity to this section, “cruelty” signifies— (a) any willful act which is of such a nature as is probably going to drive the woman to end her life or to cause grave injury or danger to life, or health (whether physical or mental) of the woman; or

(b) Harassing a woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any individual related to her to fulfill any unlawful need for any property or valuable security or is on account of failure by her or any individual related to her to meet such need.

Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code, which covers crimes of cruelty against women, shows an increase of 7.5%. Studies by the Oxfam India and accomplices in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh indicate that countless Section 498A (savagery against ladies) cases remain pending preliminary due to inadequate guidance for the complainant, ill-advised filing of the case and an absence of witnesses and proof. It is ultimately the woman who is at loss.


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