1 Aug 2023 3:37 PM GMT
Observing that genuine cases of such sexual offences are now an "exception", the Allahabad High Court last week said that since girls/women have the “upper hand” when it comes to the protection of the law, they “easily succeed” in implicating a boy or man in such cases. The Court also noted that a large number of cases are coming in courts wherein girls and women “take...
Observing that genuine cases of such sexual offences are now an "exception", the Allahabad High Court last week said that since girls/women have the “upper hand” when it comes to the protection of the law, they “easily succeed” in implicating a boy or man in such cases.
The Court also noted that a large number of cases are coming in courts wherein girls and women “take undue advantage” by lodging FIRs on false allegations after indulging in a long physical relationship with the accused.
In this regard, the Court was of the view that treating all the wild allegations in FIR as gospel truth without keeping an eye on the ground realities by Judicial officers is causing “lots of injustice” to such men.
"The time has come that courts should be very cautious in considering such bail applications. The law is heavily biased against males. It is very easy to make any wild allegations in FIR and implicate anyone on such allegations...," the Court noted.
Further, the Court also opined that the “culture of openness” is being spread by social media, movies, TV shows, etc., which is being imitated by adolescent/young boys and girls, however, the Court added, when their conduct comes in conflict with Indian social and family norms and it comes to protecting the honour of the family of the girl and the honour of girl, “maliciously false First Information Reports” are being lodged.
“Such First Information Reports are also lodged when after living in a live-in relationship for some time/long time, a dispute takes place between the boy and girl on any issue. The nature of the partner unfolds before the other partner with time and then when they realize that their relationship cannot continue for life, trouble starts….The effect of social media, movies, etc., in raising the awareness level of adolescents and loss of innocence at comparatively younger ages is clearly discernible. The traditional presumption of innocence has given way to an untimely loss of innocence resulting in unforeseen deviant behaviour of adolescents which the law never contemplated earlier. Law is a dynamic concept and it requires a re-look in such matters very drastically,” the bench of Justice Siddharth remarked.
The abovementioned observations were made by the Single Judge while granting bail to one Vivek Kumar Maurya who has been accused of committing sexual harassment and penetrative sexual assault against a minor by extending false promises to marry her.
The accused was booked under Sections 363, 366, 376, 323, 504, 506, 354, 354-A IPC and 3/4 POCSO Act on further allegations that he made sexual relations with the minor girl on several occasions and later on, married her only for sexual enjoyment.
It was also the allegations against him that he compelled her to make a physical relationship with his cousin also and when she raised alarm, the accused-applicant and his cousin abused and beaten her.
On the other hand, the Counsel for the accused argued that the alleged victim is a major and she had an affair with the applicant for the last one year, she willingly left her house and went to the house of the applicant's aunt where she entered into physical relationship with the applicant with consent.
It was further submitted that thereafter, they somehow got married but she was, later on, taken away by her parents against her wishes and when a dispute took place between family members of both, the prosecutrix parted ways with the applicant and lodged the instant FIR.
Taking into account the facts of the case and the arguments posed by counsels for both parties, the Court opined that it appeared the FIR in the instant case had been lodged on the basis of false allegations and incorrect facts.
The Court further noted that the prosecutrix did not fully support the allegations made in the FIR in her statement recorded under section 164 CrPC and the allegation regarding the offences committed by cousin of applicant was missing in her statement.
The Court also observed that the marriage of the prosecutrix and applicant was registered, however, no divorce, dissolution of marriage or judicial separation of couple through court has taken place.
Against this backdrop, the Court observed that the nowadays the lodging of the FIR is being done invariably by giving a written application, drafted by experts in courts or the Munshi/Head clerk in police station at the police station, which is “always fraught with danger of the false implication” like in the present case.
“The experts are aware of the ingredients of each and every provisions of penal law. They incorporate the allegations in such a way so that accused may not be able to get even bail easily and early. Just a cursory glance at allegations made in the First Information Report is sufficient for the court to throw the file, without any application of mind further. The State of affairs has gained alarming proportion. An honestly written First Information Report is very short and is shorn of any unnecessary and false allegation. This is the test, but it is seldom realised,” the Court remarked.
The Court added that such experts implicate all those with whom the informant/complainant has other grievances, not connected the offence being complained whatsoever, since the lodging of complaint/FIR against all enemies in one stroke is “encashed as an opportunity”.
“Their roles are so meticulously shown in the F.I.R that even the most experienced of the judges falter. For the courts at district level, it is quite hazardous to grant bail in matters of such serious and meticulously made allegations because of fear of disciplinary proceedings by the higher courts. This is one of the reasons why the district courts refuse to grant even bail, not to say about granting of acquittal in most of the cases only because of the seriousness of allegations,” the Court noted.
In this regard, the Court stressed that in case the honest statement of complainant / informant is recorded in writing by the officer-in-charge of the police station soon after the incident and the role of expert get excluded in lodging of report, “cases of false implication will come down”.
Lastly, finding that the conduct of the prosecutrix of repeatedly eloping from her parental home with applicant and going to several places shows that she was a consenting party all through, the Court noted that they both entered into a court marriage, a fact, which falsified the entire case of the prosecution.
Consequently, the Court deemed it fit to grant bail to the accused released on bail on his furnishing a personal bond and two sureties each in the like amount to the satisfaction of the court concerned.
Also read: “Rape Law Misused As A Weapon By Females Upon Differences With Male Counterpart”: Uttarakhand High Court
Allegations Of Sexual Assault On Rise; Inordinate Delay In Lodging FIR To Be Considered At The Stage Of Bail: Allahabad HC
Counsel for Applicant: Om Narayan Pandey
Counsel for Opposite Party: G.A., Lakshman Tripathi
Case title - Vivek Kumar Maurya vs. State Of U.P. And 3 Others 2023 LiveLaw (AB) 237 [CRIMINAL MISC. BAIL APPLICATION No. - 23551 of 2023]
Case Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (AB) 237
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