As the number of complaints regarding demand for dowry are increasing, the conviction rate is dropping each year in Chandigarh. While in 2012, the conviction rate was 14.8 per cent, it dipped to 11.91 per cent in 2013. Police officers claim that the low rate of conviction is because more and more women are settling the cases after mediation.
In 2013, 67 cases which were registered by the CAW cell of the police earlier were decided out of which in eight cases, the accused was convicted and in 59, the accused and complainant entered into a compromise. In 2012, out of 54 cases which were decided, in eight, the accused was convicted and in 46 cases, compromise was sought.
SSP UT, Sukhchain Singh Gill said, “The conviction rate is dropping in these cases because the women file a complaint and after mediation, they decide for compromise, which is also of two kinds, with husband and wife deciding to start living together again or they mutually separate”.
SSP added, “though police tries to have a high conviction rate in all cases, in this particular section it is better that the rate is lowered. It means that mediation helps”. The Inspector General of Police had made it mandatory for all cases of dowry to be first sent to mediation center in the District court.
SSP said, “mediation is helping a lot. Most of the cases are being solved without any registration of case. Since mediation had started, many couples have entered into compromise”. An official at the mediation center in District Court Complex, Sector 43 said, “three months time is given for mediation of matrimonial cases. Most of the cases are decided by mediation center in a maximum of two months”.
In 2014 till June, 551 complaints apart from 391 pending complaint of the previous year were received. Out of these, in 157 cases, the couple compromised and started living together, in 375 no offense was made out after seeking legal opinion, in 70 cases the couple separated after returning the dowry items and 62 cases were registered out of which 57 are under trial and 16 accused were arrested.
In 2013, 1,737 complaints were received apart from 343 pending complaints. Out of these, 513 couples started living together, in 657 cases, no offense was made out, in 319 cases the couple separated, 95 cases were registered out of which 52 are under trial and 93 accused were arrested and three have been acquitted from the court against whom no offense was made out.
In 2012, 1,443 complaints were received by CAW and 231 was pending previously. 502 couples are living together, in 451 cases no offence was made out , 234 couples separated and 81 cases were registered. Out of these 81 cases, 47 cases were put in court of which 8 were canceled, in six cases accused were acquitted and one case was quashed. In these cases, 110 persons were arrested.