Setting aside the charge of rape against a man accused by his former partner, the Bombay High Court recently observed that when two consenting adults consciously enter a physical relationship, they are fully aware of the consequences and must bear them. The court was hearing a petition filed by the man to quash charges against him. His plea claimed that the complainant had been in a consensual relationship with him since 2010 and had only alleged rape after relations between them turned sour.
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The woman, who is a lecturer in a college, had claimed that she had consented to the sexual relationship as the man had promised marriage, but had gone back on his word later. She then lodged a police complaint against him, accusing him of cheating and rape. She also alleged that the man would often assault her and asked her for money. The court refused to quash charges of cheating, criminal intimidation and assault against the man.
“The woman was nearly 25 to 26 years old when the first incident of sexual intercourse took place. She was aware of the consequences of keeping sexual relations with a man and she was also aware that there may be differences between two persons and they may find each other not compatible. The girl was highly educated. Therefore, the consent cannot be said to have been obtained by fraud,” said Justice Mridula Bhatkar.
“It is a fact that there was a promise by the petitioner to marry the complainant. However, it cannot be said in any manner that the promise to marry was a condition precedent for giving a free consent for sex before marriage,” added Bhatkar.