If a woman had sexual relations with a married man who promises to marry her and got pregnant, it is an act of "Promiscuity" not “Rape”; Delhi HC [Read the Judgment]

If a woman had sexual relations with a married man who promises to marry her and got pregnant, it is an act of "Promiscuity" not “Rape”; Delhi HC [Read the Judgment]

The Delhi High Court has ruled that if a woman consents to have sexual relations with a married man who promises to marry her, continues the relationship and gets impregnated, then it is an act of "promiscuity" on her part and cannot be said as one induced by a misconception of fact.

The court made the observation while acquitting a guitar teacher, who was awarded 10 years of rigorous imprisonment by a trial court in October last year for raping and cheating his colleague on the false promise of marrying her.

"If a major girl consents to the act of sexual intercourse on a promise to marry and continues to indulge in such activity and becomes pregnant, it is an act of promiscuity on her part and not an act induced by misconception of fact," Justice SP Garg of the Delhi High Court said.

The High Court reversed the trial court's decision against the convict-accused on the ground that the consent of the girl, who was referred in the judgment as Miss 'X', for physical relation was a "conscious" act.

It, however, observed that the appellant's conduct in the episode was unfair and unreasonable and "his previous wife is the real victim who was cheated by him (by having) indulged in consensual sex with X."

"Undoubtedly, 'X' and the appellant having a love affair had consensual sexual relations several times. However, (due to the) appellant's attitude to keep a distance from her, she got enraged and lodged the instant complaint. Nothing is on record to infer that she had agreed/consented for sexual intimacy with the accused on any assurance or promise of marriage.

"There is nothing in her evidence to demonstrate that she was incapable of understanding the nature and implications of the act which she consented to. She was enough matured to understand as to what was happening between the two. She even became pregnant and got the pregnancy terminated. Her consent for physical relation was an act of conscious reason," the court said.

The man was arrested in February 2014 after the girl lodged a complaint with the police alleging she was raped by the accused on the false promise of marrying her.

The Prosecution had alleged before the trial court that while imparting coaching at an institute here in 2011, the woman fell in love with the accused and later, during a trip to Jaipur in January 2013, the couple solemnised marriage. She had further told the police that on return to Delhi, she got to know through the man's friends that he was already married.

During the trial, the man had denied all the allegations against him, saying the woman was aware of his marriage and had established physical relations with him with her consent.
He had also sought leniency from the trial court in the matter of sentence on the ground that he has been in judicial custody throughout the trial despite being innocent.

The trial court had rejected his contentions saying the accused had no care or concern for the woman's emotions and sentiments and had "ruined the life" of the complainant who was "madly in love with him".

The High Court, however, noted that even after the accused was handed down the jail term, the girl continued to have love and affection for the appellant and visited him several times in jail and met his expenses.

"Even after lodging the complaint with the police, she continued to have love and affection for the appellant and visited him several times in jail and met his expenses. At this juncture, she was well aware of previous history whereby the appellant was already married.

"It did not deter her to express her love for him. In her evidence, she has not implicated the appellant for the offence for which he has been convicted. X's statement in its entirety is to be scrutinised to find out appellant's involvement in the crime. X's half-hearted statement is not at all sufficient to prove the appellant's guilt beyond reasonable doubt," the High Court said.

Read the Judgment here.