Dowry meaning :
Section 2.. “Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961” Definition of “dowry” Definition of “dowry”.—In this Act, “dowry”means any property or valuable security given or agreed to be given either directly or indirectly— (a) by one party to a marriage to the other party to the marriage; or (b) by the parents of either party to a marriage or by any other person, to either party to the marriage or to any other person, at or before 1[or any time after the marriage] 2[in connection with the marriage of the said parties, but does not include] dower or mahr in the case of persons to whom the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) applies. Explanation I.— 3[***] Explanation II.—The expression “valuable security”has the same meaning as in Section 30 of the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860).
Stridhan is, generally speaking, what a woman can claim as her own property within a marital household. It may include her jewelry (gifted either by her family), gifts presented to her during the wedding or later, and the dowry articles given by her family.
Gifts given by the parents of the bride are considered “stridhan”, i.e. property of the woman, traditionally representing her share of her parent’s wealth.
IPC Section 498A
498A. Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty.
Whoever, being the husband or the relative of the husband of a woman, subjects such woman to cruelty shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine.
Explanation-For the purpose of this section, “cruelty” means-
Any willful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to drive the woman to commit or suicide to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or health whether mental or physical) the of woman; or
Harassment of the woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any property or valuable security or is on account of failure by her or any person related to her meet such demand.
This section is non-bailable,non-compoundable (i.e. it cannot be privately resolved between the parties concerned) and cognizable.
Prosecution for a non-compoundable offense can only be quashed by a High Court of India under its powers under section 482 of Criminal Procedure Code of India. Usually, cases under 498A are quashed by mutual agreement when the husband and wife reconcile with each other, or agree to divorce by mutual consent.
After registration of an FIR for a cognizable, non-bailable offense, the police in India can arrest any and all of the accused named in the complaint, but in Delhi before arresting now have to obtain a written permission from the DCP, after direction of Hon”ble High Court.