Protection of Women From Domestic Violence Act in India

Domestic violence is a highly concerning social issue affecting millions of people and leading to physical, emotional, and even fatal harm. Media has revealed that even celebrities have been victims of domestic abuse and even the most successful people can be victims of this problem. The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act safeguards and preserves the rights of victims of domestic violence.

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence refers to the various acts of violence that take place in the house, among family members, or between spouses. Domestic violence is commonly depicted as a male abuser and a female victim, usually his wife or girlfriend.

Women are occasionally the perpetrators of domestic violence, and men can be victims in these situations. Any violence committed against another person by a member of a family or a group could be deemed.

Domestic violence is a pattern of behaviour aimed at gaining or maintaining power and control over a partner in a relationship. Any behaviour that frightens, intimidates, terrorises, manipulates, hurts, humiliates, blames, injures, or wounds someone falls under domestic violence.

Anyone person, regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, or gender, can be a victim of domestic abuse. It can occur in any sort of relationship, including married, cohabiting, and dating ones. Domestic abuse affects people of all ages and educational levels.

Types of Domestic Violence Under the Protection of Women From Domestic Violence Act, 2005

According to the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, domestic assault against women can take various forms, including physical, sexual, verbal, and emotional violence, and even economic violence.

Physical Abuse

Physical assault is the most visible form of domestic violence against women. The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act defines physical violence as an act that causes bodily harm or endangers the victim’s life, limb, health, or development. Assault, unlawful force, and criminal intimidation are examples of physical abuse.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual violence against women is a kind of sexual and repetitive harassment. Generally, marital rape should be considered a form of sexual violence. Unless the woman is under the age of 15, marital rape is not outlawed.

Sexual violence is defined as any sexual abuse that ‘abuses, humiliates, degrades, or otherwise violates the dignity of a woman’, according to the protection of women from the Domestic Violence Act.

Verbal or Emotional Abuse

Verbal abuse in the context of domestic violence against women comprises insults or threats by family members. Verbal abuse is the foundation for emotional abuse, a common sort of domestic violence in terms of human rights. A woman’s sense of self-worth is undermined by a mixture of verbal and emotional abuse, resulting in psychological abuse.

Economic Abuse

Economic abuse is likely the least visible form of domestic violence. Economic abuse can take numerous forms, such as prohibiting a wife from getting an education or working outside the home.

Economic abuse is prevalent, especially in households where money gets pooled into joint accounts, and there is little or no family support structure to help. Financial exploitation is merely another type of control, although less visible than physical or sexual exploitation.

Rights granted to women under the protection of women from domestic violence act.

Under the protection of women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, women get the following rights:

Right to live in a shared household:

The act guarantees a woman’s right to live in a married or shared household, even though she has no title or rights there. A portion of the house could be set aside for her personal use. A court can issue a residency order to protect her right to live in the home.

Right to seek help and protection:

Domestic abuse victims have the right to receive help from police officers, protection officers, service providers, shelter places, and medical institutions and file a complaint under Section 498 A of the IPC.

Right to Issue Orders:

When the crime of domestic violence has been proven prima facie, the victim may have the following orders made in its favour by the courts:

  • Protection orders
  • Residence orders
  • Monetary relief
  • Custody orders
  • Compensation orders
  • Interim or ex-parte orders

Right to seek relief from other lawsuits and legal proceedings:

Different cases and legal proceedings brought before a civil court, family court, or criminal court will provide relief to the aggrieved party.

Authorities responsible under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act

The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act allows state governments to appoint protection officers and service providers to assist the aggrieved person with medical examinations, legal aid, safe residence, and other forms of support in exercising her rights.

  • Protection officers: These officers are subject to the court’s jurisdiction and control. Their responsibility is to provide the aggrieved individual with required information about service providers and to guarantee that the monetary relief orders are followed.
  • Service Providers: Organizations and institutions that advance women’s rights are referred to as service providers. It is their responsibility to approach the offended person and inform her of her legal rights and aid her in starting the necessary legal processes or taking precautionary steps to fix the situation.
  • The court of first-class judicial magistrate or metropolitan magistrate: This court shall have jurisdiction over cases of domestic abuse, and either of the parties must reside, conduct business, or work within the jurisdiction of this court, or the cause of action must have arisen within the jurisdiction of this court.

Penalty Under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act

For the protection officer:

Suppose the protection officer fails or refuses to perform his duties as instructed by the magistrate without good reason. In such a case, he/she will be charged with an offence under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act and face punishment.

For the Respondent:

The respondent’s violation of a protection order or interim protection order is a punishable offence not subject to bail. It is punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of up to one year, a fine of up to 20,000 Rs or both.

Reasons for Domestic Violence in India

Variety factors cause domestic abuse. Domestic violence against women results from a complex interplay of sociological/behavioural, historical, religious, and cultural factors.

  • Determinants such as anger issues/aggressive attitude, poverty/economic hardship, the difference in status, controlling/dominating character, drug addiction, upbringing, and psychological instability (bipolar, depression, stress, etc.) are behavioural factors. The neglect of conjugal responsibilities exacerbates domestic violence due to extramarital encounters or a lack of trust.
  • Historical causes can be linked to patriarchy’s inherent evil and superiority complex, which men have for centuries.
  • Female domination, if not outright dominance, is indicated through religious sanctifications. As a result, domestic violence against women is on the rise.
  • One of the cultural elements that contribute to marital violence is a desire for a male kid. Domestic violence against women results from this preoccupation, which arises from a lack of information and an inherent masculine superiority.
  • Dowry is a social and cultural phenomenon. However, the increasing number of illegal dowry demand-related domestic violence cases is vital to highlight individually. This fact was acknowledged in parliament as a cause of dowry-related domestic violence was defined as a distinct category under the scope of abuse resulting in domestic violence under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act.

Risks for Intimate Partner Violence

Even though there is no single cause of domestic violence, male partners who abuse drugs (especially alcohol), are unemployed or underemployed, are poor, have not completed high school, and are or have been in a romantic relationship with the victim are at the highest risk of becoming victims.

In heterosexual partnerships, unmarried individuals are more likely to become victims of intimate partner violence. Individuals with a mindset that gives men control over women are more likely to become involved in violent relationships, either as perpetrators or victims.


Throughout their lives, women are subjected to various forms of violence. Domestic violence is widespread in India, where concerns such as dowry and male domination. These variables contribute to women being victims of domestic violence. The figures do not reflect the true picture because things are not reported as often as they should be due to social stigma and the general Indian culture of being concerned about other people’s thoughts.

Most times, the issue only comes to the police attention and the courts of law when the victim dies due to the injuries, commits suicide, or goes to the hospital for treatment. Mild abuse, are undetected. As a result, the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act was passed to fight unfairness and violence in marriages and families.

FAQs on women’s rights

What are the types of domestic violence?

There are four types of domestic violence, namely physical, sexual, verbal, and economical.

What are the norms for domestic violence in India?

Male domination and dowry are significant norms of domestic violence in India.

In heterosexual partnerships, who is most likely to be the victim of Intimate Partner Violence?

Unmarried Individuals are most likely to be the victim of intimate partner violence.

What is the cultural element leading to domestic violence?

Desire of a male kid leads to domestic violence.

What is the most uncommon kind of domestic abuse?

Economic abuse is an uncommon domestic abuse.

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