Allahabad HC Dismissed Bail Plea of POCSO Accused who Married Minor Girl, Even Established Physical Relation with her ‘Consent’

Lucknow Bench Allahabad HC Law Insider

Aastha Thakur

Published on: 14 October 2022 at 10:09 IST

The Allahabad High Court dismissed the bail application of a man alleged to have raped a minor girl (16-17 years old) after marrying her with her consent. The court said that the consent of a minor is not valid here.

The bench of Justice Sadhna Rani (Thakur) noted that as a minor, if the minor leaves her parental home, solemnises marriage and establishes physical relations with her husband with her consent, her consent will hold no ground in a court of law. The consent given here is by a minor child, which is insignificant under the POCSO Act.

The minor’s husband (Prveen Kashyap) was registered under Sections 363, 366, and 376 IPC and Sections 3/4 of the POCSO Act, 2012. The applicant filed for his bail application on the basis of the statement of the victim under Sections 161 and 164 CrPC, that she was the consenting party here.

Further, it was submitted by the applicant counsel that the minor girl left her parental home along with her accused and they got married and were living together as husband and wife. However, the Court rejected the argument presented here and emphasised that the girl was not major during the commission of the offence.

The ruling was pronounced by the bench just a day after the co-ordinate bench of the High Court granted quashing of a criminal case registered against a man under the POCSO Act after examining that the accused and the minor girl child are married and happy with each other. The bench of Justice Manju Rani Chauhan stated that:

“To punish the offenders for a crime, involved in the present case, is in the interest of society, but, at the same time, the husband is taking care of his wife and in case, the husband is convicted and sentenced for societal interest, then, the wife will be in great trouble and their future would be ruined. It is also in the interest of society to settle and resettle the family for their welfare,”

There were numerous decisions this year passed by the Allahabad High Court where the POCSO case registered against the man has been quashed on the grounds of the welfare of the family and the interest of society.

In August, the High Court quashed the POCSO case registered against the man, noting that the accused man and victim-wife (minor at the time of offence) were ‘happy with each other’ as couple.

The bench of Justice Rahul Chaturvedi in the POCSO case, while granting bail to the accused, gave his statement that it would be extremely harsh and nonhumane to deprive a newborn baby of parental love and affection just because the girl was minor during the incident.

The court, in this case, remarked that the POCSO Act does not mention anywhere its non-intention to bring within its scope or limit, cases of the nature where adolescents or teenagers are involved in a dense romantic affair.

Related Post