Bombay High Court Grants Bail To Rape Accused; Questions Credibility Of Victim's Claims

Bombay High Court Grants Bail To Rape Accused; Questions Credibility Of Victim's Claims

Justice Chavan noted that an X-ray report submitted by the prosecution revealed that the woman's radiological age was between 19 and 20 years, ruling out the applicability of the POCSO Act.

FPJ News ServiceUpdated: Friday, March 29, 2024, 09:39 PM IST
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Bombay High Court | File pic

The Bombay High Court has granted bail to a rape accused, observing that no sane man would believe the 'victim's' version that she was sexually assaulted on a crowded Juhu beach on a festival day in May 2021. The accused, a watchman, had been behind the bars for around three years.

While making the decision on March 22, Justice Prithviraj Chavan noted that the day of the 'incident' coincided with Eid-ul-Fitr and that the woman herself stated before the magistrate that they were friends. “Since the victim was major at the time of alleged offence, prima facie, it does not appeal to one's mind that in broad daylight at a crowded Juhu Chowpatty on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr, the applicant would commit forcible sexual intercourse with the victim. No sane man would believe it,” said the HC.

According to the prosecution, on May 14, 2021, the accused took the woman to Juhu Chowpatty and sexually assaulted her behind some stones and also threatened her with dire consequences. The Bangur Nagar police later booked him under the relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO). Justice Chavan noted that an X-ray report submitted by the prosecution revealed that the woman's radiological age was between 19 and 20 years, ruling out the applicability of the POCSO Act.

“The applicant has been behind the bars ever since his arrest on June 25, 2021. It is informed that the trial court has not yet framed a charge. Therefore, there is no likelihood of bringing the trial to its logical end,” Justice Chavan added. The court accepted his bail application, while directing him to furnish a personal bond of Rs25,000. He was also asked to attend the police station and court proceedings as and when required. The HC instructed the accused not to tamper with evidence or influence witnesses.

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