Bombay HC: A woman may be of easy virtue but she has the right to say no

Bombay High Court: An application for suspension of sentence and release of the accused on bail during the pendency of appeal was rejected by a Single Judge Bench comprising of AM Badar, J. The applicant (accused) had been sentenced under the Penal Code of 1860 and also under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act to ten years of rigorous imprisonment apart from payment of Rs. 25,000 as fine on being found guilty of committing penetrative sexual assault on the victim, who was a minor, repeatedly.

The applicant contended that he had been on bail during the pendency of the trial and he had not misused the opportunity; also, the victim had been in a sexual relationship with two people and that there was no other earning member in the applicant’s family. On these grounds, the applicant requested to be released on bail.

The Court held that “a woman may be having easy virtue but that does not mean that all and sundry can take advantage of this fact. She has right to say no.” The fact that the victim had two boyfriends did not allow the accused to commit penetrative sexual assault on her. Therefore, the bail application was rejected. [Shrikantsingh Sukhdev Singh v. State of Maharashtra,  2017 SCC OnLine Bom 8878, order dated 21.09.2017]

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