• IPC 406 Return of Streedhan

My wife has registered a false FIR u/s 498A, 406 against me and my parents. In the FIR, my wife has mentioned 7 streedhan articles. The streedhan was collected by her at the PS in presence of the IO and 2 witnesses. The streedhan returned, matches with items mentioned in the FIR. When I returned the streedhan, I drafted a declaration on a Rs.100 bond paper which stated that my wife has absolutely no further complaints with regards to her streedhan since she has received it and her streedhan is now in her possession. My wife and 2 witnesses signed the bond paper which I submitted to Magistrate of sessions courts and he then issued AB order stating that all streedhan has been returned in the presence of the IO and hence bail is granted.

Now, after 60 days of AB order, I have received a legal notice from my wife's lawyer falsely stating that there are some more streedhan articles that are yet to be returned. In reality, these items are my mother's jewelry which my mother had lent to my wife during some festivals and family events. 

My questions are mentioned below:
1. What purpose does this legal notice serve other than harassment, threat and malicious attempt to extort money?
2. Can my wife realistically file another civil / criminal case for the purpose of getting her hands on my mother's possessions? My mother never "gifted" these items to her. My mother had simply lent them to my wife for her to wear them for some family events. Basically, my wife was neither the "owner" nor the "custodian" of these items. She simply wore them for few hours. But, now, since she has photos with the jewelry and saree, she is trying to claim them.
3. How can I use this legal notice to my advantage in fighting the 498A, 406 trial? Can this legal notice be used as evidence of harassment by my wife?
4. Can the IO still mention 406 in his chargesheet even after overseeing the hand-over of the streedhan at the PS and signing of bond paper?
Asked 1 year ago in Criminal Law
Religion: Hindu

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17 Answers

Dear Querist

1. This Notice is for the charge of breach of trust under section 406 of IPC otherwise, at the time of charge, the court may discharge all of you for the offence of Breach of Trust under section 406 of IPC, by this notice they are trying to say that the charge under section 406 of IPC should be maintained.

2. She may file a civil suit for the recovery of Istridhan against your mother before the civil court.

3.  Reply to the legal notice with all the facts and details of the bond paper executed by her before the witnesses. yes, you can use this.

4. yes, he has to mention 406 of IPC



Feel Free to Call



Nadeem Qureshi
Advocate, New Delhi
6220 Answers
301 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

1.  If you have received the legal notice demanding the additional articles in the name of return of stridhan, you may have to issue a reply notice denying their demands and the allegations.

Let them approach court to solve this additional issue. 

2. Let she file any case for retrieving the items that do not belong to her, you cn challenge the same in the trial proceedings properly.

3. You can use this as a piece of evidence for her acts of cruelty by indulging in multiplicity of proceedings against you in the divorce case.

4. Since you have the evidence for having handed over the streedhan articles, you can nullify that charge during the trial proceedings when the matter comes up for trial along with the charges for the offence under section 406 IPC

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
77748 Answers
1509 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. Send a reply denying the charges.

2. Yes

3. Yes

4. Yes. Return of articles does not obliterate  the offence of section 406 IPC.

Devajyoti Barman
Advocate, Kolkata
22515 Answers
401 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Send reply to legal notice 


deny that there are any further articles to be returned 


take the plea that it was mother jewellery lent to her for wearing on some occasions 


IO would not mention section 406 in his charge sheet as wife has signed bond paper that stridhan has been returned to her 

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
87596 Answers
6134 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

there is no need to get so emotional

just give a very strong reply to the lawyer's notice

the wife signed the bond/declaration. The exchange of streedhan was done before the IO and 2 witnesses

at that time there was no whisper whatsoever by your wife that there are certain more things remaining with you or your family which are required to be returned to her

she never indicated the aforesaid 

thus she is now estopped from raising any further claim for streedhan. The doctrine of 'promissory estoppel' kicks in. 

if the wife's claim is to be accepted then it would mean that she can raise such claims at any remote point of time at her whims and fancies merely based on some photos in which she is seen wearing certain apparels and jewelry which she alleges belong to her

if such thing is to be allowed then anybody can click photos with expensive stuff on her and then claim them from her husband citing the excuse of being her streedhan


coming to your questions

1. yes it appears to be a harassment

2. nothing stop hers. But nothing also stops you also to defend such suits or claims

3. yes alongwith your reply thereto

4. cant say. Even if he does, you are not remediless. you have ample defenses

Yusuf Rampurawala
Advocate, Mumbai
6852 Answers
76 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0


  1. Since your wife has already received all the stridhan and has duly acknowledged the same, the legal notice in nothing but an afterthought to harass you and possibly extort. Send a befitting reply to the legal notice to put the ball back in her court.
  2. No, she cannot realistically lodge any civil or criminal complaint with regard to recovery of possession of the jewelry in question in the given circumstances. She has to have proof that she purchased the jewelry or that they were given to her/gifted after the marriage. The definition of stridhan includes  what the wife has received from the in laws in marriage. Mere photographs cannot be conclusive proofs and besides it in unbelievable that the did not claim them when she was at the police station.
  3. You only need to produce a copy of the notice and the acknowledgement that she provided at the police station to make it an evidence against her.
  4. It is unlikely that the IO would add 406 as part of the charge and the legal notice could be an attempt to create confusion in the mind of the IO and influence his judgement.

S J Mathew
Advocate, Mumbai
3376 Answers
173 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

As you have a signed document stating that you have returned her streedhan, she cannot demand any other streedhan from you. You should wisely reply to the legal notice. IO cannot mention 406 in FIR. The legal notice can be used as your evidence and it can be helpful to you while proving that, your wife have become used to harass you. 

Pooja Ashar
Advocate, Ahmedabad
215 Answers
4 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

  1. The demand for return of Streedhan pertains to new items and not the ones that were return in ps before io. That matter is settled. This is new case.
  2. She can file both civil and criminal cases. The proof she has are documentary by way of photographs. She had jewelary on her, she need not prove anything. It is for you to establish the jewelary is only lent to not gifted to her. She can claim that she failed to recollect the gift of streedhan in police station.
  3. Apart from her acknowledgement of receipt in police station there is nothing in your favor.
  4. Make proper use of her acknowledgement of receipt to fight back.
  5. The notice cannot be used against her as there is proof of photographs, it cannot be said that the notice is groundless.  
  6. It is matter of proper cross examination of her in Court.

Ravi Shinde
Advocate, Hyderabad
2490 Answers
41 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

This is pure harassment. Don't respond. Let her go to court. File an application for perjury as she has already accepted that she has received all the streedhan.

The fir is based on false premise. It can be easily quashed. She'll not get any relief out of it.

Moreover the notice and her allegations would help you in trial proceedings.

Rahul Mishra
Advocate, Lucknow
13709 Answers
63 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

First of all your wife and 2 witnesses signed the bond paper which you submitted to the Magistrate of sessions courts and he then issued AB order stating that all streedhan has been returned in the presence of the IO and hence bail is granted.

1) Legal notice appears to be for harassment, send a reply to the legal notice

2) Yes she can file but she has to prove that she purchased the jewelry, you can deny her claim that there are any further articles to be returned

3) yes along with your reply and you can take the plea that your mother had lent her jewelry to your wife during some festivals and family events.

4) According to me, NO because wife has signed the bond paper that all streedhan are returned.

Anuranjan Patel
Advocate, Patna
9 Answers

Not rated


You need to reply to the legal notice that it is a false and vexatious attempt to cause you mental trauma. Your wife had signed the paper that all her streedhan was received and hence she cannot claim your mother's ornaments even though she has pictures of them wearing. Apart from this, you can show cause that the whole FIR is liable to be quashed as your wife is taking undue advantage of the laws. There have been many cases where the court has quashed the whole FIR on finding that it was based on false facts and with an ulterior motive to harass the husband and his family.

You can reach out to me for detailed consultation. If you found this helpful please rate my answer. Thank you.

Anik Miu
Advocate, Bangalore
4635 Answers
50 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

On account of covid there is delay in carrying  out investigation and filing charge sheet 


2) where the victim has suffered the harm to his reputation he may file a complaint of Defamation against the person who lodged false FIR against him.


3) it is better to file civil defamation case after you have been acquitted by the trial court 


4) in  Anjana  Saikia  (Das)  vs. Anuradha Das 2003, SCC OnLine Gau 321 it was   held   that   though   an   action   for defamation by statement in the FIR would lie but   only   after   the   FIR   case   was   decided. Similarly, in Mahavir Singh vs   Surinder Singh2010 SCC OnLine P & H 9094 also it was held that mere lodging of the FIR, though it may contain false imputation, does not amount to defaming   the   person   against   whom   FIR   is lodged.

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
87596 Answers
6134 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. You cannot say that the FIR has been registered based on the false complaint.  If the criminal case has been dismissed by the court after finding that the complaint is false and not maintainable in law, you can file a case against the police for malicious prosecution. 

Then also you may not be able to file a defamation case against her because she is just a defacto complainant and not the prosecutor in the case.  


2. The above answer suits to this question too.

3. It is for the police to file the charge sheet after completing the investigation.

If you are anxious about it, you can file a petition before the trial court mentioning the intentional delay and harassment of police by not filling the charge sheet and seek direction for hastening the filing of charge sheet before trial court. 

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
77748 Answers
1509 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. criminal complaint for defamation has to be filed within 3 years of the registration of FIR 

2. civil suit seeking damages and compensation for defaming, within 1 year from the date of acquittal

3. no idea. If the police is not taking any further steps after registration of the FIR, then why not apply for quashing of such FIR by filing a criminal writ petition in the High Court. This aspect needs further legal research though 

Yusuf Rampurawala
Advocate, Mumbai
6852 Answers
76 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. Its harassment. reply to the legal notice through lawyer.

2. let her file you can contest the same on merits. She may file false case but you can contest the same in court.

3. you can rely on the averments of that notice

4. he can mention you can get it quashed or discharged in court

1. yes you can file once all these cases are finished and you are acquitted.

2. also civil defamation within 3 years

3. Police generally file charge sheet as per their will as there is no limit to them when accused is on bail. No such special benefit to you in filing charge sheet delayed by police.

You can approach me on LINKEDIN app for further assistance if required

Prashant Nayak
Advocate, Mumbai
26998 Answers
84 Consultations

4.4 on 5.0

Dear Sir,

1) In both cases of criminal and civil defamation you will have to wait for acquittal, as in civil matter the judge will dismiss case as being premature, and for criminal case you will need to have hard proof to support your claim.

2)Limitation-  For civil defamation, it is 1 year from the date of the event and for criminal defamation, it is a period of 3 years from the date of the event.

3) Sir if the complain has been made during covid times, the same could be reason for delay by the police. You should seek assistance of local police to find out the status of the charge sheet and fir against you.

Thank you

Anik Miu
Advocate, Bangalore
4635 Answers
50 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

1. Since, she has signed the declaration in the presence of witnesses and further court has already admitted the same at the time of granting AB , then legally she cannot go beyond the clauses mentioned in the Declaration.

- You can reply the legal notice after denying the claims .

2. She cannot claim the costly items of your mother , and only having right over her gift items received at time of marriage , and further if she claims then she will have to produce the proofs for the same , and only photo is not enough. 

3. Yes, such notice amounts to cruelty , specially on in -laws.

4. Yes, I.O. of the case cannot delete the said section , and only court has power to drop this section , hence I.O. can suggest for the same. 

Further questions reply : - 

1. No defamation case is made out against her in the matrimonial matter , however your mother can file the same if she dropped as an accused in the said FIR .

2. As per law, charge sheet should be filed within a period of 3 months from the date of FIR , but I.O. can take time from the court due to special reasons .

- Due to Covid-19 , court is hearing only urgent matters. 

Mohammed Shahzad
Advocate, Delhi
9707 Answers
116 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

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