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“Unbecoming of Indian woman to sleep after being ravished” – Karnataka HC Judge’s pronouncement after granting accused anticipatory bail

By: Diksha Sinha

In the case of Rakesh B vs. State of Karnataka, the Single Bench Judge, Justice Krishna S Dixit, granted anticipatory bail to the accused, who had been charged with the offence of rape. During the hearing of anticipatory bail, the Judge, remarked that it’s strange for an Indian woman to sleep after being ravished by the accused. 

The Judge stated “….  explanation by the complainant that after the perpetration of the act she was tired and fell asleep, is unbecoming of an Indian woman when they are ravished.”

The accused, a 27-year old man, had been employed by the complainant, a 42-year old female, for the past two years. It was alleged that both had developed a sexual relationship on the false pretext of marriage. On the bight of the incident in May, 2020, the accused went to the complainant’s office and raped her where she fell asleep after being ravished by the accused. 

A FIR was lodged and the accused was prosecuted under Section 376 (Punishment for Rape), Section 420 (Cheating), Section 506 (Criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and Section 66(B) (stolen computer resources) of Information Technology Act, 2000.

The state counsel opposed and pleaded that the nature of the crime is serious and if granted the anticipatory bail then it might be difficult to make the accused available in court and the trial might therefore be significantly affected.  

The Judge held that the “serious nature” of crime cannot be the only criterion to deny bail when prima facie no case has made out by the police. Other observations made by the Judge while granting anticipatory bail were:

  1. The version of false pretext of marriage in the case is difficult to believe.
  2. No explanation as why to why complainant was present at 11 p.m. in the office.
  3. No objection of consuming alcohol.
  4. Allowing the accused to stay with her till morning.

Further, as the COVID -19 cases are rising, the principle of “bail is rule and denial is an exception” is being adopted at large. Therefore, the court granted an anticipatory bail to the accused after him paying the bond of Rs. 1 Lakh with two security bonds of the same amount. 

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