The Bombay High Court recently granted bail to a man accused of raping a minor girl, observing that the two were in a relationship and that the girl, though minor, understood the consequences of her actions. The girl was 15 years and 4 months old, while the accused was 22 years old at the time of the alleged incident.
Background of the crime
The accused was 21 years old, and she was 15 years and four months older when the alleged crime occurred. Her mother filed a complaint on April 6, 2021, after her daughter alleged that she accompanied him to his aunt’s house on the pretext of meeting her but forced himself on her when she was not home. In her statement, the minor said that she and the applicant were in a relationship. According to her statement, on April 6, 2021, she went with the applicant to his aunt’s house in Govandi, where he committed sexual intercourse with her without her consent and threatened her not to disclose the incident to anyone.
What statements concluded the case?
After going through the charge sheet, the Bombay High Court said that while the minor’s consent is immaterial, she was capable of understanding the consequences of her actions, and she voluntarily accompanied the applicant to his aunt’s place.
Hon’ble Justice Bharati Dangre after examining every detail said: “In a case like this, where she voluntarily joined the company of the applicant, and she had categorically admitted that she was in love with the applicant, whether that she consented for the sexual intercourse or not, is the matter of evidence.”
the Bombay High Court said
Continuing to that, “Till what point of time, she accompanied the applicant and whether she resisted the actual physical indulgence, when according to her, the applicant forcibly committed sexual intercourse with her against her wishes, will have to be determined”.
The Bombay High Court further noted that she kept quiet about the alleged incident until her family objected to her WhatsApp chat with the applicant.
“The time gap between these two events is also crucial, as it was always open for the prosecutrix to disclose the victim of the forcible act if it was committed in her house, but she continued to remain silent and disclosed the incident only when an objection was taken for establishing contact with the applicant,” the court said.
The court granted bail to the applicant on the condition that he will not contact or attempt to contact the prosecutrix either physically or virtually, and move away from the area where the prosecutrix resides.
Tags: Bombay High Court, Pocso Act, minor, bail.