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Friendliness does not amount to consent for a physical relationship: Bombay High Court

The Bombay High Court recently denied the anticipatory bail application of a man accused of impregnating a lady under the pretence of marriage, observing that a girl’s simple friendship with a male does not permit him to misinterpret it as her agreement to create a sexual relationship with her through Justice Bharati Dangre in the case of Ashish Ashok Chakor v. State of Maharashtra (ANTICIPATORY BAIL APPLICATION NO.1676 OF 2022)

FACTS OF THE CASE:

The brief facts of the case are that  A 22-year-old woman who had only recently met the current applicant was the complainant. The applicant is accused of having forced sexual contact with her sometime in the year 2019 while she and her friend were at a third friend’s residential property. When she objected, he said that he liked her and would marry her regardless. The deed was then performed several times after that.

The complainant has described numerous instances where they engaged in sexual activity after the applicant promised to marry her. The complainant became pregnant and was discovered to be six weeks along. The applicant was called right afterwards, but he declined to accept responsibility and instead accused her of having a poor character and being involved with someone else.

JUDGEMENT:

According to the court, a sexual relationship was repeatedly established under the promise of marriage. However, the applicant claimed infidelity when the girl became pregnant, but on their final date—which was described in the complaint—he once more had forcible sex with her.

A boy cannot take a girl for granted and assume that she is willing to have a physical relationship with him just because they are friendly. It was held that a man cannot claim his friendship with a person of different sex as justification to force himself upon her when she expressly refuses copulation. Every woman expects “Respect” in a relationship, whether it be a friendship built on shared affection or a romantic one. Here, the applicant is accused of continuing a sexual relationship under the guise of marriage, but when the complainant became pregnant, he left, claiming that the pregnancy was brought on by her relationships with other people. Thus, the application was rejected.

JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY REETI SHETTY

Click here to view judgement

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