The last route
It is a sort of hope-bringing verdict, indeed. Disagreeing with its earlier order diluting Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code, a statute often invoked in dowry-related domestic abuse cases, the Supreme Court's three-judge bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, and Justices A M Khanwilkar, and DY Chandrachud announced that earlier order rendered by the division bench really curtails the rights of the women who are harassed and prima facie, the guidelines issued by it lay 'in the legislative sphere'. While hearing the petition of a Maharashtra-based NGO – that prayed for the inclusion of women in family welfare committees sought to be formed by district legal service authorities so as to achieve at least a 2:1 sex ratio – the Apex Court virtually departed from tradition and decided to revisit the judgment. The Court also issued notices to the ministries of home affairs, and women and child development, and the National Commission for Women to revert with their views and also appointed two senior Supreme Court lawyers amici curiae to assist it. It may be noted that earlier a group of 16 women's rights organisations had sent a memorandum to the then CJI JS Khehar to review the earlier judgment in that case. Notably, the earlier Supreme Court's order received stern criticism for having undone decades of achievements of women's rights movements.