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Posts tagged ‘section 376 ipc’

Rathore’s Smile/smirk!

Rathore, the  President’s medalist retired Director General of Police of Haryana and convicted molester of  Ruchika, was shown getting out of the trial courts, after the delivery of sentence of 6 months of imprisonment, in most of the TV channels.

As a DGP he must have been aware of section 375 of the Indian Penal Code  which defines rape and mentions: “sixthly- with or without her consent, when she is under sixteen years of age”. Ruchika was 14 years old when she was “MOLESTED”.

The crux of the issue is that for any offence in the IPC, unless ATTEMPT is made punishable in a charging section, there is no provision to charge a person for “ATTEMPT”. For example s. 307 is the charging section for Attempt to murder, s.309 is the charging section for Attempt to suicide, whereas there is no section “ATTEMPT TO RAPE”, therefore the police and the courts go with section 354, which is titled,”Assault or criminal force to woman with an intent to outrage her modesty”. The maximum punishment prescribed upon conviction is 2 years. Andhra Pradesh by an amendment to this section 354 of IPC, prescribed a minimum punishment of 5 years and a maximum of 7 years. No other state had recognized this lacuna and therefore that SMILE  on the face of Rathore.

If Mr.Rathore had been convicted under section 354 IPC within the state of Andhra Pradesh, he would have received a higher sentence.

One might wonder if Mr.Rathore would have had a smirk on his face if he had been sentenced for 7 years instead of the 6 months awarded to him.

I remember a Thamizh poem written after the assassination of Mrs.Indira Gandhi thus, “IMAI IDHITHTHU KANN KURUDAAGIYADHU”, which when translated into English would mean, “The eyelids struck like lightning and blinded the eyes!” The very eyelids which were to protect the eyes from lightning, struck like lightning and blinded the eyes. How apt, in the context that the very same guards who were to protect the person of Mrs.G, assassinated her! Mr.Rathore’s ATTEMPT TO RAPE, is nothing short of what the assassins did. He being a police officer, should have protected Ruchika, instead he had molested her. Like the prescription of higher sentence to Prison Superintendents and Medical staff in  hospitals for the offence of RAPE, any police officer when convicted of RAPE, should be inflicted with higher /exemplary punishment.

Hope Ruchika’s family gets Justice, despite the lacuna in our IPC.


The last few days have been trying times for Arnab Goswami, Barkha Dutt and their ilk, as they have been battling tooth and nail against the distinctions that the Member of Parliament had introduced, in his now expunged speech in the parliament, on RAPE in Goa.

In all fairness, Shantaram’s sincerity in his presentation of his ideas appear genuine. Maybe he lacks the language skills to present a really complex IDEA.

The Idea sought to be expressed doesn’t seem to be mischievous upon careful analysis.

This is what Shantaram Naik appears to have attempted to bring out:-

One of the most important and the last ingredient in the offence of RAPE is the element of FREE CONSENT. If this element of FREE CONSENT by the woman is missing, then the man is open to the allegation of RAPE if he had had intercourse with the woman who alleges RAPE.

There is a PREVENTIVE part to the offence of RAPE and a PENALTY part to the alleged offence of RAPE.

The police is in charge of both the parts and they are entrusted with the function of PREVENTING RAPE as much as PROSECUTING  the perpetrator of the RAPE. For  prosecution, credible evidences will have to be adduced before the courts to establish the offence. This is easier for the police when there are circumstantial evidences  which show that the WOMAN resisted and sustained visible marks besides other items that leave a tell-tale mark in the place of rape or on the rape victim.

The problem arises when the issue is of the PREVENTIVE KIND. If a couple is seen going together, there is a presumption that they are at peace with each other and the police has no role to intervene and question them- even if it be late in the night. Supposing a man and a woman are seen late in the night a car, parked peacefully and if the man had commits a “DATE RAPE”, then the element of circumstantial evidence would be tremendously narrowed down and the EVIDENCE, if any, is reduced to one person’s word against the other. The police cannot butt into all private space when he/she has visible reasons to believe that there is no offence being committed. Hence the PREVENTIVE ROLE of the police becomes suspect- if the police gets nosy, then they are susceptible to all sorts of allegations of  trampling of LIBERTIES.

The issue is that when a woman gets RAPED, the media attaches the name of the city/town/village, as the name of the victim, on humanitarian grounds, is kept concealed. Hence the name of the city/town/village gets sullied. It therefore appears as if the police in that area had failed in its preventive duties. That may not be the case, if the couple had moved into a building or to a thinly populated place peacefully, and later if the woman alleges rape, the police would be in a quandary, as the circumstantial evidence would not be useful for the prosecution’s case.

It is because of this aspect that Shantaram Naik had desired that the police should investigate the case thoroughly if the victim had known the alleged rapist etc..

Let us also not forget that perjurious charges of rape have been brought up by women, merely to settle scores or extract money. Please recall the South African Judge, Sirajuddin Desai, who was alleged by a woman (Salome Isaacs- Salome! what a name- reminds me of Herod!!) as her rapist in his hotel room in Mumbai, when she visited his room late evening. She presented the condom used by THEM as evidence of RAPE to the police and the Magistrate sent the Judge to police custody!! The case, to the best of my knowledge, was withdrawn.

Why should the police allow withdrawal of a RAPE case, when it is NOT a COMPOUNDABLE OFFENCE? If the woman had alleged falsely, she should have been proceeded against for making false complaint. The claim of the South African judge was that they had consensual sex.

Therefore Shantaram’s request for thorough investigations is a salubrious suggestion, in the interest of TRUTH.

Nonetheless, the apprehensions of people like Ms.Poornima Advani, Ms.FlaviaAgnes are also not without substance. Knowing the legal system, the prosecution would not be able to use the evidences collected for their objectives as much as the defense would. But that cannot become the reason for not ascertaining the TRUTH in all its NAKEDNESS.

Mr.Shantaram has made the statement more to wash away the guilt that is being smeared on the fair name of the state of Goa, let us get to the pith of his statement and not bash the MP in the media, especially  pseudo-zealously like Brakha Dutt or Arnab Goswami!

Would anyone care to tell me the name of the FIVE STAR HOTEL where the Judge Mr.Sirajuddin Desai and the female delegate  Salome stayed? NO. No one can. I remember that the media was very careful to avoid giving BAD PUBLICITY to the five star hotel. Why can not they extend the same to Goa also? No. Since No palpable gains would be available to media persons, nobody is gonna give the media guys coupons for a free lunch, u see!!

At least did the media protest when the case was withdrawn/closed and did it so zealously pursue if it was RAPE or PERJURY? NO. So much for their zeal.


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