<i>Martyrs of Marriage</i> makes a mark in Millennium City
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Martyrs of Marriage makes a mark in Millennium City

The film documents the abuse of the anti-dowry law and was screened for the first time in the city at The NorthCap University, Sector 23A.

<i>Martyrs of Marriage</i> makes a mark in Millennium City An interactive session during the event

At a time when crimes against women are the talking point in the country, a woman speaking for men who have been victims of abuse at the hands of women is unheard of. Deepika Narayan Bhardwaj, a resident of Gurgaon, has raised her voice to support the cause.

On April 7, Martyrs of Marriage, a documentary she made, was screened for the first time in Gurgaon at The NorthCap University, Sector 23A. The screening was attended by parents, faculty members, senior advocates, marriage counselors, writers, victims of abuse of anti dowry law and eminent guests such as Raman Malik, spokesperson, Haryana BJP, BT Kaul, chairperson, Delhi Judicial Academy, and IPS Bharti Arora.

The 90-minute-long film documents the injustice that has been perpetrated by the misuse of Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code, commonly known as the anti-dowry law. The film shows victims of misuse of the provision and delves deep into the issue.

According to Bhardwaj, false cases under Section 498A have destroyed the lives of many and even though courts have condemned such cases, no concrete measures have been taken to check the problem that has often driven its victims to suicide. It is important for law students and the public alike to understand the issue.

Anurag, one of the students of the university, said that the documentary was helpful in understanding the correct use of Section 498A. “I am thankful to the university for this screening as it will help us law students to dispense justice and not fight false cases.”

A case in Bhardwaj’s family inspired her to make the film. Her cousin’s wife wished to end her marriage and she filed an FIR under Section 498A against him. Bhardwaj told City Spidey, “It was during that time I saw this law closely. It was bizarre how my cousin was assumed guilty just due to her allegations and the entire responsibility to prove his innocence rested on us.”

IPS Bharti Arora said, “I was impressed by the documentary and would like it to be screened at our training centre as well. There has been misuse of the law by lawyers and even the police, which can curb such cases but they don’t because of money.”

“So far no one has made a film on this subject. I am very happy to present this film. I am sure it will make people realise that misuse of laws is not a trivial issue to be brushed aside. It is a crime and must be dealt with harshly. I hope this film initiates a serious discussion around how false cases destroy lives. It is time the state came up with a concrete solution to address the issue,” Bhardwaj added.