•  •  Dark Mode

Your Interests & Preferences

I am a...

law firm lawyer
in-house company lawyer
litigation lawyer
law student
aspiring student
other

Website Look & Feel

 •  •  Dark Mode
Blog Layout

Save preferences

Seriously: Delhi HC acquits rape-accused for 'forceful' but 'not forcible' sex [READ JUDGMENT]

The Delhi high court noted in its judgement acquitting an alleged rapist, that sexual intercourse between the accused and the victim, who was “beyond the age of menopause”, was “forceful [but] it was not forcible”.

A bench comprising justices Pradeep Nandrajog and Mukta Gupta ruled that the absence of the victim’s consent for sex was not proved beyond reasonable doubt because even though “forceful penetration is evident from the injuries on the vaginal orifices […] however, besides the injuries on the vagina there is no other injury mark on the body of the deceased [victim]”.

Acquitting the accused Achey Lal, justices Nandrajog and Gupta wrote in the judgement delivered on 30 October:

“Achey Lal even if held guilty for causing the offence of Section 376 IPC cannot be held guilty for offence under Section 302 IPC as he neither had any intention nor knowledge that such a forceful act of sexual intercourse would cause the death of the deceased. Consequently he is acquitted for the offence punishable under Section 302 IPC.

As regards the offence punishable under Section 376 IPC the deceased was aged around 65-70 years, thus beyond the age of menopause. We find force in the contention of the learned counsel for the appellant that even if the sexual intercourse was forceful it was not forcible and contrary to the wishes and consent of the deceased. From the MLC of Achey Lal and the post-mortem of the deceased it is evident that both Achey Lal and deceased had consumed alcohol. The forceful penetration is evident from the injuries on the vaginal orifices. However, besides the injuries on the vagina there is no other injury mark on the body of the deceased or on the appellant to show that there was any protest by the deceased. Hence we are of the opinion that it has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt that the appellant committed sexual intercourse with the deceased contrary to her wishes or her consent.

Consequently the appellant is also acquitted of the charges under Section 376 IPC. The impugned judgment of conviction and order on sentence are set aside.”

With this precedent the bench takes a step back from the Mathura rape case in which it was held that there is no requirement of explaining injuries for rape and that consent should be unequivocal, reported DNA India.

Lawyer Vrinda Grover commented to the DNA: ““On what grounds did the court arrive at the judgement that the case was not one of rape? And where does menopause factor in here?”

The victim was a 65-70 year old maid found dead in 2010 in her apartment in Majnu Ka Tila, North Delhi by one of her employers, and the accused who was found inebriated beside the victim’s body, was immediately apprehended by the police. The lower court had then convicted him and sentenced him to 10 years rigorous imprisonment.

Read full judgement

Click to show 22 comments
at your own risk
(alt+c)
By reading the comments you agree that they are the (often anonymous) personal views and opinions of readers, which may be biased and unreliable, and for which Legally India therefore has no liability. If you believe a comment is inappropriate, please click 'Report to LI' below the comment and we will review it as soon as practicable.

Latest comments