Attacked For Being With A Woman Of Different Community: Kerala HC Refuses To Quash Case Of 'Moral Policing' involving 'Mental Depravity'
The Kerala High Court has refused to quash a crime involving attack on a man for travelling with a woman of a different community, even though the accused had arrived at a settlement with the victim.
The victim, Sanal T.R. who was arrayed as a respondent in the petition was attacked in the year 2017 with wooden reaper and iron rods by the accused Muhammed Nazar and nine others, for travelling with a woman of a different community.
The accused were charged with offences under Sections Sections 143, 147, 148, 341, 323, 324, 506(ii), 308 read with Section 149 of the IPC and trial had commenced when the accused approached the High Court seeking to quash the case citing a settlement with the victim.
".....it is a case in which a violent mob was attacking the 2nd respondent ostensibly for no reason. The reason shown is that he had removed a lady from another community in the car", Justice K. Haripal noted in the order.
The Court agreed with the Public Prosecutor Hrithwik C.S. that if the case is quashed, it will send a wrong message to the public.
The Court relied upon the judgment of the Supreme Court in the matter of Gian Singh v. State of Punjab and others to hold that cases involving mental depravity and moral turpitude cannot be quashed on the ground of settlement.
"...they were doing moral policing. That means this is an offence involving mental depravity. Moreover, brutal attack was unleashed against an unarmed single person and caused him serious injuries", the Court held while noting that some of the accused had grave criminal antecedents.
Accordingly, the Court dismissed the petition.