SC says can’t allege rape against partner in consensual ties | India News


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court stepped in to quash rape charges levelled by a woman against a man on finding that she had a long consensual relationship with him before her marriage to another man, during the subsistence of the marriage and even after she ended her marriage by mutual consent, reports Dhananjay Mahapatra.
The complainant woman from Ballia had in her statement before magistrate said she had come in contact with the man in 2013 and they got into a relationship. She got married to another man in June, 2014, but continued her relationship with the previous man. She claimed that she ended her marriage on persuasion from her lover. After she got divorce by mutual consent, she carried on with her relationship.

When the man, with whom she had a relationship for long, got married to someone else in December 2017 and did not break his marriage despite promising to do so, she filed a complaint accusing the man of having sexually assaulted her with the promise of marriage.
Police registered an FIR under Section 376 against the man and then filed a chargesheet.
His pleas before the trial court and Allahabad High Court for quashing of the case were dismissed, prompting him to move the SC. A bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and A S A boy last week said the HC failed to examine whether the FIR lodged by the woman disclosed a prima facie case.

The bench said, “Admittedly, the accused and the woman were in a consensual relationship from 2013 until December 2017. They are both educated adults. The woman, during the course of this period, got married in June 2014 to someone else. The marriage ended in a decree of divorce by mutual consent in September 2017. The allegations of the woman indicate that her relationship with the accused continued prior to her marriage, during the subsistence of the marriage and after the grant of divorce by mutual consent.”
It said, “In this backdrop and taking the allegations in the complaint as they stand, it is impossible to find in the FIR or in the charge-sheet the essential ingredients of an offence under Section 376 IPC. The crucial issue which is to be considered is whether the allegations indicate that the accused had given a promise to the woman to marry which at the inception was false and on the basis of which she was induced into a sexual relationship.”
Justices Chandrachud and Bopanna examined the FIR and chargesheet minutely and said the crucial ingredients of the offence defined under Section 375 (rape) are absent in the complaint. They said the “relationship between the parties was purely of a consensual nature” and quashed the case.





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