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Kerala HC: Penetration is Essential Ingredient for offence of Rape

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RAPE-LAW-INSIDER

Shivani Gadhavi

Published On: December 17, 2021 at 18:00 IST

The Kerala High Court stated that vague statements of a woman, who is said to be a Victim of a Sexual Assault, would not constitute the offence of Rape under Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code, as there was no indication of penetrative sexual intercourse.

The Court stated, “Mere statement by the Victim in her evidence “the Accused hugged and impregnated me” without indication about penetration aspect is not sufficient to attract the offence of rape. Such a vague statement would not be a substitute for the Statutory Mandate as contained in the Explanation to Section 375.”

Justice Kauser Eddapagath observed, “Offence of rape is constituted only if the ingredients under Section 375 are made out. Unless the Victim states in her Evidence about the penetrative nonconsensual sexual act by the Accused on her, the offence of rape cannot be said to be made out.”

The Kerala High Court was hearing the Revision Petition of an Accused who was found Guilty of rape, and was punished under Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code by a Trial Court and later on by Appellate Court.

The Court pointed out, “Penetration being an essential ingredient of the offence of rape, there must be proof of actual penetration or at least penile accessing. The only Witness who can prove that is the Victim. But, even on a plain reading of the evidence of PW1 (the Victim), such fact is not revealed.”

Hence, the Kerala High Court in vide of the Legal Precedents, set aside the Conviction of the Accused and also the Orders of the Trial and the Appellate Court and Ordered the Accused be set out at his own liberty.

Also Read: Burden of Proof in Rape Cases

Landmark Judgements that shaped the Rape Laws in India