Promiscuous character of woman can't be ground of defence in rape case: Supreme Court
- The gongs of Behmai: 35 years on, will justice be served?
- Mann Ki Baat: Start-up India to crop insurance, here's all that Modi said
- J-K crisis: Mehbooba to chair PDP meet, discuss govt formation
- MCD strike: Kejriwal supports demands of protesting employees
- Fifth Column: Hope PM Modi has realised that India is not Gujarat
Promiscuous character of a woman is irrelevant in rape cases and a rapist cannot take it as ground of defence for his heinous act, the Supreme Court has ruled saying even a female of easy virtue has a right to life.
Holding that rape is not only an offence against a woman, but a crime against the entire society, the apex court said that courts should deal with such cases sternly and severely.
"Even if the victim had lost her virginity earlier, it can certainly not give a licence to any person to rape her. It is the accused who was on trial and not the victim. So as to whether the victim is of a promiscuous character is totally an irrelevant issue altogether in a case of rape," a bench of justices B S Chauhan and F M I Kalifulla said.
The bench passed the order on an appeal filed by a rape convict challenging his conviction on the ground that the victim was of promiscuous character and had been habitual to sexual activities.
It, however, refused to grant relief to the accused saying that it is not material that the rape victim was accustomed to sexual intercourse.
"Even a woman of easy virtue has a right to refuse to submit herself to sexual intercourse to anyone and everyone, because she is not a vulnerable object or prey for being sexually assaulted by anyone and everyone," the bench said.
"The courts should deal with such cases sternly and severely. Sexual violence, apart from being a dehumanizing act, is an unlawful intrusion on the right of privacy and sanctity of a woman. It is a serious blow to her supreme honour and offends her self-esteem and dignity as well," the bench said.
"It degrades and humiliates the victim and where the victim is a helpless innocent child or a minor, it leaves behind a traumatic experience. A rapist not only causes physical injuries, but leaves behind a scar on the most cherished position of a woman, i.e. her dignity, honour, reputation and chastity," it said.
- China is not India’s sibling, nor is China India’s nemesis
- Bureaucrats are an obstacle in path of ‘parivartan’, ‘vikas’
- Out of my mind: Netaji will always remain a promise never fulfilled
- Reverse Swing: A Manifesto for Middle-Eastern Migrants in Europe
- Equality before law must be accompanied by equality in social practices
- Indian policymakers underestimate problems emanating from emerging economies