Topic: Domestic Violence
Intern: Sonal Jaiswal
Graduation stream: (BA. LLB Hon’s.) VIth
College: Jayoti VidyaPeeth Women’s University,
To: Human Rights Commission, Lucknow (Uttar
The internship opportunity I had with Uttar Pradesh human right
commission was a great chance for learning. I perceive as this
opportunity as a big milestone in my career in law. I will strive to use
gained skills and knowledge in the best possible way, in order to attain
desired career objectives. I use my deepest gratitude to all the members
of the commission for supporting me to complete the internship and for
the project we made.
1-Introduction to Domestic Violence.
3-Cycle of violence.
4-Facts and figure on violence.
5-Forms of Domestic Violence
6-Causes of domestic violence.
8-The Protection of women against domestic violence, 2005
9-International law on domestic violence.
4. Introduction to Domestic Violence
“Domestic Violence” is a pattern of abusive behavior that occurs
between family members and/or intimate partners to gain power and
control. In the United States it is against the law to injure someone,
force them to participate in a sexual act, or put someone in fear of
New York City has one-stop domestic violence service centers called
family justice centers in the Bronx, Brooklyn, and queens. A domestic
violence response team assists victims of domestic violence in Staten
Island. In 2012 in New York City, police responded to 263,207
domestic violence incidents, this averages to over 720 incidents per
Globally, the United Nations reports that up to 70% of women
experience some form of gender-based violence in their lifetime. Is a
pattern of abusive behavior that occurs in many form in most of the
family in India as well as many of the countries? Alberta justice
acknowledges that domestic violence needs to be more effectively
addressed by the criminal justice system. Police services must
properly respond to, and handle domestic calls, no matter how
frequent, since failure to do so could expose individuals and the
community to danger up to and including death. The system as a
whole must provide consistent and responsive support to the victims.
Domestic violence can and does have disastrous consequences for
victims and their children, every criminal justice response to a
domestic violence incident should be executed with sensitivity,
diligence and above all, a firm understanding of the issues
surrounding domestic violence.
Domestic violence is defined as any use of physical or sexual force,
actual or threatened, in an intimate relationship. It may include a
single act of violence, or a number of acts forming a pattern of abuse
through the use of assaultive and controlling behavior. Domestic
violence is an epidemic affecting individuals in every community,
regardless of age, economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race,
religion, or nationality.
It is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling
behavior that is only a fraction of a systematic pattern of dominance
It can take a form of:-
1- Threats and intimidation
2- Verbal abuse
3- Physical abuse
4- Emotional abuse
5- Social abuse
6- Economic abuse
7- Cultural abuse
There are many others forms which are describe under domestic
6. Cycle of Violence
Many people who experience domestic violence describe that the
abuse that endured as happening in a cycle, meaning that there seems
to be a pattern that occurs.
Developed by Dr. Lenore walker in the United States in 1979, the
cycle of violence illustrate the cyclical nature of abuse and helps to
explain how the behavior of a pattern using domestic violence can
Not all women experience the cycle of violence in the same way and
a cycle can take place in a day, a week or over months. Some people
may experience some stages of the cycle or not at all. The cycle of
violence is associated with domestic violence and breaks down into
three stages: the honeymoon phase, the tension building phase, and
an acute explosion.
The honeymoon phase in the cycle of violence is the calm stage of
the relationship, that which may appear to be the most 'normal.'
During this stage, everything seems peaceful and the relationship
seems to be going well. The aggressor may appear affectionate,
passionate, and even jealous, making the victim think that the
aggressor is concerned about her. He also may be apologetic and
promise to never act abusively again. He may make other promises
regarding his behavior to win back the victim's trust and affection.
The victim may be optimistic at this point, particularly in the early
stage of a relationship. She may also agree to stay in the relationship,
and in some cases, move back in, drop charges, or stop legal
7. Tension-Building Phase
The tension-building phase falls between the honeymoon phase and
the acute explosion phase. In terms of behavior by the aggressor, this
stage includes derogatory remarks toward the victim, hyper-critical
comments and nitpicking, extreme moodiness, possible drinking
and/or drug abuse, yelling, and the withdrawal of affection.
In contrast, the victim's behavior includes avoiding family and
friends, keeping any children in the relationship quiet and/or away
from the aggressor, and being nurturing toward the aggressor. She
might cook the aggressor his favorite meals, attempting to soothe
him, and agree with statements made by the aggressor (even when
they are derogatory comments towards herself). Frequently, the
victim feels as though she is 'walking on eggshells'.
The acute explosion phase involves an act of violence on the part of
the aggressor toward the victim in the relationship. It is not
uncommon for the aggressor to hit or use weapons on the victim, or
possibly choke, rape, or even imprison them. In some cases the
aggressor uses verbal abuse or humiliates the victim. The destruction
of property can also be expected during this phase--shattering a glass
bottle, punching or kicking a hole in a wall, forcing a locked door
8. These phases are depicted to center around denial by both parties in
the relationship that the problem exists, or is as severe as it is.
1- Build up phase (increase in tension)
2- Stand over phase (control and fear)
3- Remorse phase (justification/guilt)
4- Pursuit phase (pursuit and promise)
9. The Facts and Figure on Violence
On average 24 people per victims of rape, physical violence or
stalking by an intimate partner in the United States – more than 12
million women and men over the course of a year.
Nearly, 15% of women (14.8%) and 4% of men have been injured as
a result of IPV that included rape, physical violence and / or stalking
by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
More than 1 in 3 women (35.6%) and more than 1in 4 men (28.8%) in
the United States have experienced rape, physical violence and/or
stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
From 1994 to 2010 about 4 in 5 victims of intimate partner violence
Female ages 18 to 24 and 25 to 34 generally experienced the highest
rates of intimate partner violence.
Nearly 1 in 5 women (18.3%) and 1 in 71 men (1.4%) have been
raped in their lifetime (by any perpetrator).
Nearly 1 in 10 women in the United States (9.4%) have been raped
by an intimate partner in her lifetime.
81% of women who experienced rape, stalking, or physical violence
by an intimate partner reported significant short – or long-term
impacts such as post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms and injury.
35% of men report such impacts of their experiences.
More than half (51.1%) of female victims of rape reported being
raped by an intimate partner and 40.8% by an acquaintance.
One in 6 women and 1 in 19 men in the united states have
experienced stalking victimization at some point during their lifetime
in which they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone close
to their would be harmed or killed.
Two – thirds of female victims of stalking were stalked by their
Men were primarily stalked by an intimate partner or acquaintance.
Repeatedly receiving unwanted telephone calls, voice, or text
messages was the most commonly experienced stalking tactic for
both female and men victims of stalking.
A children witnessed violence in 22% of intimate partner violence
cases filed in state courts.
30% to 60% of perpetrators of intimate partner violence also abuse
children in the household.
There is a common link between domestic violence and child abuse.
Among victims of child abuse, 40% report domestic violence in the
One study in North America found that children who were exposed
to violence in the home were 15 times more likely to be physically
and/or sexually assaulted than the national anthem.
11. Forms of Domestic Violence
When the general public thinks about domestic violence, they
usually think in terms of physical assault that results in visible
injuries to the victim. This is only one type of abuse. There are
several categories of abusive behavior, each of which has its own
devastating consequences. Lethality involved with physical abuse
may place the victim at higher risk, but the long term destruction of
personhood that accompanies the other forms of abuse is significant
and cannot be done.
Physical abuse is any physically aggressive behavior, withholding
of physical needs, indirect physically harmful behavior, or threat of
physical abuse. This may include but is not limited to:
Hitting, kicking, biting, slapping, shaking, pushing, pulling,
punching, choking, beating, scratching, pinching, pulling hair,
stabbing, shooting, drowning, burning, hitting with an object,
threatening with a weapon, or threatening to physically assault.
Withholding of physical needs including interruption of sleep or
meals, denying money, food, transportation, or help if sick or
injured, locking victim into or out of the house, refusing to give or
Abusing, injuring, or threatening to injure others like children, pets,
or special property.
Forcible physical restraint against her will, being trapped in a room
or having her exit blocked, being held down.
The batterer hitting or kicking walls, doors, or other inanimate
objects during an argument, throwing things in anger, destruction of
12. Holding the victim hostage
Sexual abuse is using sex in an exploitative fashion or forcing sex on
another person. Having consented to sexual activity in the past does
not indicate current consent. Sexual abuse may involve both verbal
and physical behavior. This may include, but is not limited to:
Using force, coercion, guilt, or manipulation or not considering the
victim’s desire to have sex. This may include making her have sex
with others, have unwanted sexual experiences, or be involuntarily
involved in prostitution.
Exploiting a victim who is unable to make an informed decision
about involvement in sexual activity because of being asleep,
intoxicated, drugged, disabled, too young, too old, or dependent
upon or afraid of the perpetrator.
Laughing or making fun of another’s sexuality or body, making
offensive statements, insulting, or name-calling in relation to the
victim’s sexual preferences/behavior.
Making contact with the victim in any nonconsensual way,
including unwanted penetration (oral, anal or vaginal) or touching
(stroking, kissing, licking, sucking or using objects) on any part of
the victim’s body.
Exhibiting excessive jealousy resulting in false accusations of
infidelity and controlling behaviors to limit the victim’s contact
with the outside world.
Having affairs with other people and using that information to taunt
Withholding sex from the victim as a control mechanism.
Controlling behavior is a way for the batterer to maintain his
dominance over the victim. Controlling behavior, the belief that he is
justified in the controlling behavior, and the resultant abuse is the
core issue in abuse of women. It is often subtle, almost always
insidious, and pervasive. This may include but is not limited to:
Insulting or criticizing to undermine the victim’s self-confidence.
This includes public humiliation, as well as actual or threatened
Threatening or accusing, either directly or indirectly, with intention
to cause emotional or physical harm or loss. For instance,
threatening to kill the victim or himself, or both.
Using reality distorting statements or behaviors that create
confusion and insecurity in the victim like saying one thing and
doing another, stating untrue facts as truth, and neglecting to follow
through on stated intentions. This can include denying the abuse
occurred and/or telling the victim she is making up the abuse. It
might also include crazy making behaviors like hiding the victim’s
keys and berating her for losing them.
Consistently disregarding, ignoring, or neglecting the victim’s
requests and needs.
Using actions, statements or gestures that attack the victim’s self-
esteem and self-worth with the intention to humiliate.
Telling the victim that she is mentally unstable or incompetent.
Forcing the victim to take drugs or alcohol.
Not allowing the victim to practice her religious beliefs, isolating
her from the religious community, or using religion as an excuse
Using any form of coercion or manipulation which is
disempowering to the victim.
Coercion, Threats, & Blame: Verbal abuse is any abusive language
used to denigrate, embarrass or threaten the victim. This may
include but is not limited to:
Threatening to hurt or kill the victim or her children, family, pets,
property or reputation.
Name calling (‘ugly’, ‘bitch’, ‘whore’, or ‘stupid’)
Telling victim she is unattractive or undesirable.
Yelling, screaming, rampaging, terrorizing or refusing to talk.
Financial abuse is a way to control the victim through manipulation
of economic resources. This may include, but is not limited to:
Controlling the family income and either not allowing the victim
access to money or rigidly limiting her access to family funds. This
may also include keeping financial secrets or hidden accounts,
putting the victim on an allowance or allowing her no say in how
money is spent, or making her turn her paycheck over to him.
Causing the victim to lose a job or preventing her from taking a job.
He can make her lose her job by making her late for work, refusing
to provide transportation to work, or by calling/harassing/calling
her at work.
Spending money for necessities (food, rent, utilities) on
nonessential items (drugs, alcohol, stereo equipment, hobbies).
15. Causes of domestic violence
There is no one single factor to account for violence perpetrated against
women. Increasingly, research has focused on the inter-relatedness of
various factors that should improve our understanding of the problem
within different cultural contexts. Several complex and interconnected
institutionalized social and cultural factors have kept women particularly
vulnerable to the violence directed at them, all of them manifestations of
historically unequal power relations between men and women. Factors
contributing to these unequal power relations include: socioeconomic
forces, the family institution where power relations are enforced, fear of
and control over female sexuality, belief in the inherent superiority of
males, and legislation and cultural sanctions that have traditionally
denied women and children an independent legal and social status. Lack
of economic resources underpins women’s vulnerability to violence and
their difficulty in extricating themselves from a violent relationship. The
link between violence and lack of economic resources and dependence is
circular. On the one hand, the threat and fear of violence keeps women
from seeking employment, or, at best, compels them to accept low-paid,
home-based exploitative labour. And on the other, without economic
independence, women have no power to escape from an abusive
relationship.24 The reverse of this argument also holds true in some
countries; that is, women’s increasing economic activity and
independence is viewed as a threat which leads to increased male
violence.25 This is particularly true when the male partner is
unemployed, and feels his power undermined in the household. Studies
have also linked a rise in violence to the destabilization of economic
patterns in society. Macro-economic policies such as structural
adjustment programs globalization, and the growing inequalities they
have created, have been linked to increasing levels of violence in several
16. regions, including Latin America, Africa and Asia.26 The transition
period in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former
Soviet Union – with increases in poverty, unemployment, hardship,
income inequality, stress, and alcohol abuse – has led to increased
violence in society in general, including violence against women. These
factors also act indirectly to raise women’s vulnerability by encouraging
more risk-taking behavior, more alcohol and drug abuse, the breakdown
of social support networks, and the economic dependence of women on
their partners.27 Cultural ideologies – both in industrialized and
developing countries – provide ‘legitimacy’ for violence against women
in certain circumstances. Religious and historical traditions in the past
have sanctioned the chastising and beating of wives. The physical
punishment of wives has been particularly sanctioned under the notion of
entitlement and ownership of women. Male control of family wealth
inevitably places decision-making authority in male hands, leading to
male dominance and propriety rights for women and girls.
● Gender-specific socialization
● Cultural definitions of appropriate sex roles
● Expectations of roles within relationships
● Belief in the inherent superiority of males
● Values that give men proprietary rights over women and girls
● Notion of the family as the private sphere and under male control
● Customs of marriage (bride price/dowry)
● Acceptability of violence as a means to resolve conflict
● Women’s economic dependence on men
● Limited access to cash and credit
● Discriminatory laws regarding inheritance, property rights, use of
communal lands, and maintenance after divorce or widowhood
● Limited access to employment in formal and informal sectors
● Limited access to education and training for women
● Lesser legal status of women either by written law and/or by practice
● Laws regarding divorce, child custody, maintenance and inheritance
● Legal definitions of rape and domestic abuse
● Low levels of legal literacy among women
● In sensitive treatment of women and girls by police and judiciary
● Under-representation of women in power, politics, the media and in the
legal and medical professions
● Domestic violence not taken seriously
● Notions of family being private and beyond control of the state
● Risk of challenge to status quo/religious laws
● Limited organization of women as a political force
● Limited participation of women in organized political system
18. SUPREME COURT JUDGEMENTS
VISHAKHA AND ORS. V. STATE OF RAJASTHAN.
The bench comprising of Chief justice Verma, Justice B.N Kirpal issued
guidelines to prevent sexual harassment against Woman in work places.
The committee advises the victim on further course of action against the
man accused of harassment. This verdict was suspended by the SEXUAL
HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORKPLACE ACT 2013.
VADDEBOYINA TULASAMMA V. VADDEBOYINA SHESHA
REDDI, 1977 SCR (3) 261
The Supreme Court in this case highlighted the Hindu female right to
maintenance as a tangible right against property which flows from the
spiritual relationship between the husband and wife. The bench
comprising pf justice P.N. Bhagwati, justice A.C. Gupta and justice S.M.
Fazal Ali held that section 14 (1) of the Hindu succession act, 1956 must
be liberally construed in favour of the females so as to advance the object
of the act. This section make a women a full owner of property.
Mohd. HOSHAN V. STATE OF A.P. AIR 2002 SC 3270
AS supreme court held that was right and justified in reversing the order
of acquittal and convicting and sentencing the appellants for the offences
under section 306 and 498 A , IPC .the supreme court did not find good
reason to interfere with the same. However, the Supreme Court thought it
19. just and appropriate to modify the sentence of imprisonment for the
period already undergone.
G.V.N. KAMESWARA RAO V. G. JABILI, AIR 2002 SC 576,
The court has to come to a conclusion whether the acts committed by the
counter –petition amount to cruelty, and it is to be assessed having regard
to the status of the parties in social life, their customs, traditions and
other similar things. Having regard to the sanctity and importance of
marriages in the community life the court should consider whether the
conduct of the counter petition is such that it has been intolerable for
This is to be judged not from the solitary incident, but on an overall
consideration of all relevant circumstances.”
SATVIR SINGH V. STATE OF PUNJAB, (2001) 8 SCC 633; 2001
AIR SCW 3793.
Supreme court examined the meaning of the words “soon before her
death” the court observed that the legislative object in providing such a
radius of time by employing the words “soon before her death” is to
emphasize the idea that her death, should, in all probabilities, have been
the aftermath of such cruelty or harassment. In other words, there should
be a close and perceptile nexus between death and the dowry – related
harassment or cruelty inflicted on the deceased.
20. The Protection of women against domestic violence,
2005 – A study
The act inter alia provides for more effective protection of the rights of
women guaranteed under the constitution who are victims of any kind
occurring within the family. The act is not gender neutral as it is
completely beneficial to women only. According to the act any ham,
injury to health, safety, life, limb, or well- being or any other act or
threatening or coercion, etc. by any adult member of the family,
constitutes domestic violence. Any woman who is or has been in a
domestic or family relationship, if it is subjected to any act of domestic
violence can complain. Aggrieved or affected women can complain to
the concerned protection officer. Service provider or magistrate.
Aggrieved woman has a right to be informed about the available services
and free legal service from the protection officer etc.
The proceedings of the complaint can be held in camera.
Every aggrieved woman has a right to reside in shared household. The
protection order by magistrat5e can be given in favour of aggrieved
woman. The monetary relief can be given to the aggrieved woman to
meet expenses or losses. The appeal can be made to session court within
30 days from the order of concerned magistrate.
The imprisonment can be made up to 1 year or a fine up to Rs. 20,000
or both for breach of protection order by the opposite party. The
protection officer can be prosecuted up to 1 year imprisonment or with a
fine up to Rs. 20,000 or both can be imposed for failure of his duties.
The act empowers the magistrate to pass protection orders in favour of
the aggrieved person to prevent the respondent from aiding or
21. committing an act of domestic violence or any other specified act,
entering a workplace or any other place frequented by the aggrieved
person, attempting to communicate with her, isolating any assets used by
both the parties and causing violence to the aggrieved person, her
relatives or others who provide her assistance from the domestic
This act has been enacted keeping in view the rights guaranteed under
article 14,15 and 21 of the constitution of India besides he provisions
made under sections 304 B and 498 A of Indian penal code.
22. INTERNATIONAL LAW ON DOMESTIC
Convention on elimination of discrimination against women specifically
article 1 states that “for the purpose of present convention, the term
‘discrimination against women’ shall mean any discrimination, exclusion
or restriction made on the basis of sex which has the effect or purpose of
impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise by women,
irrespective their marital status, on the basis of equality of men and
women, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political,
economic, social, cultural, civic or any other field.
The U.N. charter in 1945, made a
provision for equal rights of men and women. The universal declaration
of human rights in 1948 provides that all human being are born free and
equal in dignity and rights and everyone is entitled to all rights and
freedoms set forth in the declaration without discrimination of any kind,
such as sex.
The convention on political rights of women in 1954 provides for right to
vote without any discrimination, right to run for public office on equal
terms with men, commission on the status of women in 1947
recommended for promotion of women’s rights.
The convention on consent to marriage, minimum age of marriage
and registration of marriage, 1962 provides for free and full consent of
partner, legislative action to specify minimum age for marriage, and
registration of marriage .
The international convenant on economic, social cultural rights 1966
specifically article 3 states that the equal rights of women and men to
enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights. The international
23. covenant on civil and political rights, 1966 states the equal rights for men
and women both.
The declaration on the elimination of discrimination against women,
1967 spells that the discrimination on the elimination of discrimination
against women is fundamentally unjust and constitutes an offence against
human dignity. Lastly in 1963 the declaration on violence against women
is a mile stone for the countries for enacting their domestic laws on the
The effect of domestic violence on our society are obviously enormous,
but are impossible to measure. Our entire nation suffers. Tou can see the
effects at bus-stations, fast-food restaurants, and schools. You can see it
on television also, A person’s spirit is priceless, and a broken spirit costs
more than can be measured in dollars.
Still, think about the cost of domestic violence in terms of just dollars
and cents, and it’s devastating. Abuse victims need medical care. Up to
54% of women seeking emergency services, up to 66% of women
seeking general medical care, and up to 20% of women seeking prenatal
care report experiencing domestic violence. 17 victims of abuse also
require mental health care. There is enormous cost to the state in the form
of time spent by law enforcement officers, courts, lawyers, public health
workers and more. There is a cost to social welfare organization in the
form of money and donated time to staff and run shelters, counselling
services, hotlines, and more. There is a cost to the productivity of our
workhouse in the form of absenteeism, worker re-training, and decreased
Now think about the fact that children growing up in a house with
domestic violence will grow up and require medical care for stress-
related illnesses, mental health care for anxiety, depression, panic, and
1- The purple book on domestic violence.
2- Domestic violence handbook (for police and crown prosecutors in
3- Introduction to domestic violence (NYC mayor’s office to combat
4- Domestic violence act, 2005.
5- Surviving domestic violence (gender, poverty and agency) - Paula