A man has been acquitted of charge of raping a divorcee on the pretext of marriage, with a Delhi court saying the physical relations between them were consensual and FIR was lodged in utter desperation due to delay in their marriage.
The court absolved the man, who married the woman last year, saying delay in their marriage was beyond his control as his divorce case with his first wife was sub-judice and he was not legally free to marry.
“The case is not covered by the provisions of section 376 (rape) IPC as the prosecutrix appears to have made consensual relations with the accused under an agreement that he will marry her after he gets divorce from his first wife. The FIR was seemingly lodged in a state of utter desperation emanating out of delay occuring in fulfillment of promise,” Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) Anuradha Shukla Bhardwaj.
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The court also said there were several contradictions and inconsistencies in the woman’s evidence.
“It is apparent from her testimony that the accused had initially met her with a proposal of marriage in mind, having found her matrimonial alliance on a website. It is also clear from this fact that she and her family were also interested in marriage. She lodged the complaint as she got frightened due to the delay in the marriage,” it said.
According to the prosecution, the woman’s parents were looking a match for her after her divorce and they came in contact with the man, a resident of west Delhi, through a matrimonial website.
He told the woman that he cannot marry her at that time and wanted an educated person to take care of his mother, it said, adding that the woman started residing at his house with her daughter.
In April 2012, when she was sleeping in her room with her daughter, the man forcibly established physical relations with her and threatened to kill her and her daughter. Later, she lodged a complaint with the police against the man in 2013, the prosecution said.
The woman, however, changed her statement in court and deposed that her physical relations with the man were with her consent.
During trial, the man submitted that in the beginning he had told the woman and her parents that he cannot marry her till he got divorce from his first wife. He stated that as per the commitment, he has married the woman and was living happily with her and her daughter.