Domestic Violence and the Pakistan Family Courts Act 1964 in Perspectives of Therapeutic Jurisprudence
Muhammad Amir Munir
Research Center, Lahore High Court
Pakistan Law Journal, p. 228, 2006
Therapeutic Jurisprudence (TJ) is study of law to see its healing capacity. Through TJ process, the users of justice system receive a positive impact of law. It did not imply that law has always a negative impact. However, if TJ tools are adopted by the courts, the accused are given opportunity to reform and rehabilitate with the help of court and in case of successful completion of TJ probation, society gets rehabilitated persons. Alternative sentencing approach of TJ also fulfils the purpose of sanction of law. In advanced countries, already a number of courts have been established that work under the TJ techniques providing positive impact of law on litigants. Pakistan has yet to be on this path sooner or later.
If we go through various provisions of the Family Courts Act, 1964 (as amended), we will find that the family courts have been empowered to hear and try certain offences (see s.5 and Schedule of the Act, ibid). The nature of these offences may be termed as ‘domestic violence’ provisions. Note that these provisions are triable by the family courts only if the matter is between the spouses, otherwise, ordinary criminal courts will take cognizance. DV is not defined in our law but powers of family court to try criminal offences mentioned in the Schedule can collectively be termed as DV provisions. Therefore, generally speaking, Domestic Violence is a particular behavior of spouses where either one of them is suffering from the criminal assault of the other. This article covers these areas with respect to Pakistani law.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 7
Keywords: Pakistan Family Courts Act 1964, domestic violence, therapeutic jurisprudence, TJ, Prof Wexler, Prof Winnick, domestic violence in Pakistan
JEL Classification: K40Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: October 30, 2011
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