Can a closed criminal case be reopened by giving a restatement?


My sister committed suicide four year back due to the mental and physical harassment and demand of dowry from her husband and his family. I did not resister a complain that time and even gave wrong statement that it was an accident. Now her husband got married six month back and for the last four years he did not allow us to meet even my bhanja and bhanji.

 

Can I resister complaint now against him and his family? If yes, where? His ex landlord and neighbors are ready to give statement against his cruelty.

 

Answer

 

Yes you can register a complaint under Section 498A (Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty), Section 304B (Dowry Death) and Section 306 (Abetment to Suicide) in the Police Station where the matrimonial home of your sister is located..

 

However, you shall also be guilty of the offence of perjury under Section 191 of the Indian Penal Code. 

 

The Indian Penal Code (IPC) under Section 191 defines perjury as giving false evidence and by interpretation it includes the statements retracted later as the person is presumed to have given a false statement earlier or later, when the statement is retracted. Under section 191 of IPC, an affidavit is evidence and a person swearing to a false affidavit is guilty of perjury punishable under Section 193 IPC which prescribes the period of punishment as seven years imprisonment. 

 

However, if you can establish that you had given the said false statement under coercion or threat, it is possible for you to be acquitted under the Offence of Section 191.

 

We would also like to suggest that in case the reason for filing the complaint is merely to be able to meet your nephew and niece then you can even file a petition for visitation rights.

 

Kindly note here that the delay of 4 years would be for you to explain, as adverse inference shall be drawn against your complaint for such a long delay.

 


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