The Allahabad High Court while denying bail to an accused for an alleged offence of rape of a 7-year-old minor girl has observed that there is an “alarming and shocking increase” of sexual offences committed on children, and such sexual offenders must be punished with severest terms.

“Though all sexual assaults on female children are not reported and do not come to light yet there is an alarming and shocking increase of sexual offences committed on children. This is due to the reasons that children are ignorant of the act of the rape and are not able to offer resistance and become easy prey for lusty brutes who display the unscrupulous, deceitful and insidious art of luring female children and young girls. Therefore, such offenders who are menace to the civilized society should be mercilessly and inexorably punished in the severest terms”, Justice Sanjay Kumar Singh observed in the matter.

Advocate Vijay Tripathi appeared for the applicant-accused, and Advocate Rajendra Kumar Srivastava appeared for the State.

In the present matter, a complaint was filed against the applicant-accused for an alleged offence under Section 376 IPC and Section 3/4 of POCSO Act, 2012.

The prosecution vehemently opposed bail by contending that the victim in her statement both under Section 161 and 164 CrPC has made serious allegation of rape against the applicant. Furthermore, the victim is a minor child aged about 7 years, and the offence is heinous in nature, therefore the bail application of the applicant should be rejected.

However, the applicant-accused contended that allegation of the prosecution is not supported by the medical examination report of the victim as no injury was found on her body, and her hymen perineum was found intact.

The Court, however, observed that the victim in her statement under Section 164 CrPC had specifically stated that when she had gone to fetch mustard from the field, accused took her to the field and committed the act.

"It is well settled that to constitute an offence of rape complete penetration of penis with emission of semen and the rupture of hymen is not necessary", the bench noted in the matter.

The Court also took not of the fact that it was not disputed that after investigation charge sheet was submitted under Section 376AB of I.P.C., in which minimum sentence of 20 years has been provided. "Apart from this presumption under Section 29 of the POCSO Act shall also be drawn against the accused-applicant", the order further read.

The single-judge bench among other cases also cited Bharwada Bhoginbhai Hirjibhai v. State of Gujarat, AIR 1983 SC 753 which states that "In the Indian setting, refusal to act on the testimony of a victim of sexual assault in the absence of corroboration as a rule, is adding insult to injury. Why should the evidence of the girl or the woman who complains of rape or sexual molestation be viewed with the aid of spectacles fitted with lenses tinged with doubt, disbelief or suspicion ? To do so is to justify the charge of male chauvinism in a male dominated society".

Accordingly, considering the overall facts and circumstances, gravity of offence and severity of the punishment, the bench rejected the bail application.

Cause Title: Rajesh v. State of U.P. and Ors. [Neutral Citation No. - 2023:AHC:101375]

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