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INDIAN CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IS MORE OF A SENTENCE ORIENTED SYSTEM WITH LITTLE EMPHASIS ON THE DISGORGEMENT OF VICTIM’S LOSS AND SUFFERING: ODISHA HIGH COURT

This particular decision is upheld by the High Court of Odisha through the division bench of Justice Sanjeeb Kumar Panigrahi in the case of Subhranshu Rout v State Of Odisha (BLAPL No.4592 OF 2020)

FACTS

On 03.05.2020 one Rupali Amanta, D/o. Raghunath Amanta of Village Giridharprasad, P.S. Rasol, District-Dhenkanal alleged that for a period of about one year, she had been in love with the petitioner. Both the petitioner as well as the accused were village mates and classmates. On the day of last Kartika Puja, the petitioner went to the house of the informant and taking advantage of the fact that she was alone he committed rape on the informant and recorded the gruesome episode in his mobile phone. When the informant warned petitioner that she would apprise her parents of the brutal incident and its serious undertones, the petitioner threatened to kill her as well as to make viral the said photos/videos. Further, she has alleged that since 10.11.2019, the petitioner had maintained physical intimacy with the informant. Upon the informant narrating the incident to her parents, the petitioner opened a fake Facebook ID in the name of the informant and uploaded all the objectionable photos using the said ID in order to further traumatize her. Though the informant disclosed the said fact to the IIC, Rasol P.S.by way of a written complaint on 27.04.2020, the Police has failed to take any step on the said complaint and thereby portrayed unsoundness of the police system. After much difficulty, finally, the informant could get the present FIR lodged.

JUDGEMENT

In the instant case, prima facie, it appears that the petitioner has not only committed forcible sexual intercourse with the victim girl, but has also deviously recorded the intimate sojourn and uploaded the same on a fake Facebook account. Statement recorded under Section 161 of Cr. P.C. of the victim girl is also clearly in sync with FIR version. Considering the heinousness of the crime, the petitioner does not deserve any consideration for bail at this stage. However, this Court is of the view that Indian Criminal Justice system is more of a sentence oriented system with little emphasis on the disgorgement of victim’s loss and suffering, although the impact of crime on the victim may vary significantly for person(s) and case(s)– for some the impact of crime is short and intense, for others the impact is long-lasting. Regardless, many victims find the criminal justice system complex, confusing and intimidating. Many do not know where to turn for help. As in the instant case, the rights of the victim to get those uploaded photos/videos erased from Facebook server still remain unaddressed for want of appropriate legislation. However, allowing such objectionable photos and videos to remain on a social media platform, without the consent of a woman, is a direct affront on a woman’s modesty and, more importantly, her right to privacy. In such cases, either the victim herself or the prosecution may, if so advised, seek appropriate orders to protect the victim’s fundamental right to privacy, by seeking appropriate orders to have such offensive posts erased from the public platform, irrespective of the ongoing criminal process

JUDGEMENT REVIEWE BY NAISARGIKA MISHRA

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