The Madhya Pradesh High Court (Indore bench) recently quashed a rape case instituted against the accused by the victim on the allegation that he established physical relations with her on the false promise to marry her.
The bench of Justice Subodh Abhyankar noted that even if it is assumed that the accused had established a physical relationship with the victim, it can't be said that the same was against the victim's will, or without her consent.
The Court further observed that it was unbelievable that the accused, who had gone to the house of the victim along with his mother, sister and brother-in-law with a marriage proposal, would commit rape on her on the upper floor of the house.
Further, calling the version of the prosecutrix as preposterous, the Court found it to be a consensual relationship, and resultantly, the petition of the accused to quash the FIR stood allowed and the FIR under Sections 376, 294 and 506 of IPC and also the subsequent charge-sheet were quashed.
The case (as alleged) in brief
On July 21, 2020, an FIR was lodged by the Prosecutrix against the present petitioner/accused under Sections 376, 294 and 506 of IPC, stating that she is a divorcee and since she wanted to settle in life once again, she met the accused/petitioner on February 21, 2020 for marriage purpose.
She met him again on Feb 29, 2020, in a hotel wherein the accused tried to get intimate with her, but as she protested, he consoled her that he would marry her, however, he did not do anything on that day. Further, on June 26, 2020, the petitioner/accused came to her house along with her mother, sister, and brother-in-law to which the prosecutrix thought that he has come to fulfill his promise and take her to the upper floor to talk to her privately and took advantage of her.
Thereafter, they left for Bhopal and from there the petitioner also called her to come to Bhopal where they would enjoy to which the prosecutrix refused as she said that as she has still not married to him, her family members would not allow her to go on her own, to which the petitioner got angry and started abusing her and threatened her with dire consequences and also blocked her. Thus, the prosecutrix got scared and lodged the report alleging that the petitioner had sexually exploited her and she wants legal action against him.
Taking the averments made in the FIR on their face value, the Court observed that it was apparent that on 29 Feb, the petitioner had called her to some Hotel and tried to take advantage of her, however, when she said that she has not yet married to him, he had accepted this fact and again dropped her back.
Further, the Court took into account the fact that after some days, he allowed her to talk to his mother, sister, and brother-in-law, and thereafter on 26.06.2020, he came to her house along with his family members on which date it is alleged that he had sexual intercourse with her on the pretext of marriage on the upper floor.
The Court also noted that the victim had herself stated that the petitioner and his family members had told her that marriage between them is acceptable to them.
In view of this, the Court observed that it was apparent that even assuming that the prosecutrix had a physical relationship with the petitioner at her home, his immediate conduct as also the conduct of his family members clearly revealed that all of them had agreed that the prosecutrix should marry the petitioner.
Thus, the Court held that it can't be said that what transpired on June 26, 2020, in the house of the prosecutrix was rape as it was not against her will, or not without her consent, and there was no false promise which can suggest that it was a rape. Resultantly, the petition was allowed.
Case title - Sachin Jain v. State of MP and anr.
Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (MP) 189