NINE MONTHS after he was convicted by a Bhiwani court for rape of a married woman, the Punjab and Haryana High Court acquitted the accused after ruling that the woman is “in habit of lodging such type of complaints” and indulging in “blackmailing”.
The Bhiwani youth had been sentenced to 10 years imprisonment by a court of Additional Sessions Judge in January 2018. The 28-year-old woman in her complaint to the police in August 2017 had said that the accused trespassed into her house in May 2017 and committed the rape on her.
The alleged sexual abuse continued on subsequent occasions on the “promise of performing marriage with her” but ultimately he refused to marry her and threatened to kill her if she disclosed anything about their relationship to others, according to her complaint. During the trial, the accused did not lead any evidence but pleaded innocence.
In its decision on appeal against the lower court judgement, Justice Harminder Singh Madaan has said the facts of the case show the woman was a consenting party and though the alleged rapes took place between May 2017 and July 2017, the complaint was only lodged in August 2017.
“No satisfactory or plausible explanation for such delay has been furnished, which itself puts a big question mark over the credibility of the case of the prosecution. It is certainly not a case of accused having sexual intercourse with the prosecutrix against her wishes…” the judgement reads.
The accused had been living in the house of the woman for about two months during the which the alleged sexual abuse had taken place. Justice Madaan in the judgement has said: “the prosecutrix, a married woman, had been indulging in wrongful activities, keep the appellant in her house, of course in a live-in relationship when during the subsistence of her marriage … and then lodging FIR.”