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Will You Marry Her? SC Asks Rape Accused Man – Burning Issues – Free PDF Download

THE CASE AND ACCUSATIONS

  • The FIR against Mohit was lodged in 2019 under Sections 376, 417, 506 of the Indian Penal Code and under Sections 4 and 12 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (“POCSO Act”) by the girl.
  • The girl alleged that during 2014-2015, when she around 16 years of age and was studying in the ninth standard, the accused used to stalk her.
  • Since he was her distant relative, he used to keep coming to her house.

THE CASE AND ACCUSATIONS

  • She further alleged that during that period, he clandestinely entered into the house from a backside door and committed rape on her. He also threatened her of consequences if the incident was disclosed.
  • She further alleged that even thereafter he continuously stalked her and threatened her. She alleged that he used to come frequently to her house and used to have sexual intercourse.
  • She has also stated that sometimes, he used to use contraceptive.

THE CASE AND ACCUSATIONS

  • Since she was afraid, she never disclosed this fact to anybody.
  • It was further alleged that when she tried to lodge a police complaint with the help of a social worker, the mother of the accused dissuaded her from it saying that she will accept her as a daughter-in-law.
  • She further alleged that the petitioner once got executed a writing on a stamp paper from her illiterate mother, stating that there was an affair between the two and with her consent, they both had indulged in sex. It was promised that he will marry her after she attained 18.

THE CASE AND ACCUSATIONS

  • However, the accused backtracked from his promise and married someone else.
  • After the accused was granted anticipatory bail by the Sessions Court, the girl approached the Bombay High Court seeking its cancellation.

CASE IN BOMBAY HC

  • Mohit Subhash Chavan (now aged 23 and a govt. servant) accused of raping a 16 year old girl during 2014-15.
  • Bombay High Court (Aurangabad Bench) cancelled his anticipatory bail.

CASE IN BOMBAY HC

  • “One can easily conclude that going by the allegations, the accused has sexually exploited the applicant for a sufficiently long period, since she was around 16 years of age. The papers of investigation would further corroborate the applicant’s version about execution of a writing on a stamp paper of Rs.500/-. Respondent No.2 and his family seem to be so influential that they could get executed this writing from the applicant and her widowed mother. The very fact that they could get such writing executed is indicative and is sufficient to infer that respondent No.2 had indulged in sex with the applicant even when she was merely 16 years of age. Pertinently, this writing also bears his signature and signature of his mother”.

CASE IN BOMBAY HC

  • The High Court even went to the extent of saying that the Sessions Court’s order granting bail was “atrocious”.
  • The Sessions Court observed though the girl was a minor, she was of “sufficient maturity” as she “has with meticulous details mentioned about use of contraceptive” by the accused.

SLP IN SC 01-MARCH 2021

  • A bench headed by the CJI was hearing a SLP filed by Mohit.

 

WHAT IS SLP?

  • SLP stands for Special Leave Petition.
  • SLP is a petition seeking special permission (leave) from SC to appeal against a judgment passed in any of the lower courts or tribunals in India. SLP is not an appeal but a petition filed for an appeal.
  • The Supreme Court may accept or reject the same.
  • SLP is filed before the SC under Article 136 of the Constitution.

01-MARCH 2021

  • “Will you marry her?”, CJI SA Bobde asked the petitioner’s lawyer when the matter was taken.
  • “I will take instructions”, Advocate Anand Dilip Langde, petitioner’s lawyer responded and sought a pass over.
  • The lawyer submitted that his client was a government servant who will be suspended from service if arrested in the case.
  • “You should have thought before seducing and raping the young girl. You know you are a government servant”, the CJI replied.

01-MARCH 2021

  • “We are not forcing you to marry. Let us know if you will. Otherwise you will say we are forcing you to marry”, the CJI added.
  • When the case was taken again after other matters, the lawyer informed that marriage was not possible as the petitioner had married someone else.
  • The lawyer added that the petitioner initially wanted to marry her but she refused.

PROTECTION FROM ARREST GRANTED

  • After that, the bench dismissed the petition giving him liberty to seek regular bail.
  • The bench, also comprising Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian, also granted the petitioner protection from arrest for four weeks.

MANY QUESTIONS REMAIN UNANSWERED

  • Why the SC granted provision for regular bail?
  • Why the SC granted protection from arrest for 4 weeks?
  • Is the SC trying to set a precedent that by marrying a rape victim, the accused can avoid prosecution?

 

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