Will you marry her: CJI asks govt servant accused of raping minor

The Asian Age.  | Parmod Kumar

India, All India

The apex court granted protection from arrest to the petitioner for eight weeks

The petitioner's lawyer submitted before the bench that his client is a government servant, and he will face suspension due to his arrest in the matter. — PTI file photo

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday asked a government servant accused of repeatedly raping a minor girl if he would marry her.

Heading a three judge bench Chief Justice Sharad A. Bobde asked the lawyer appearing for the accused whether his client would marry the victim girl. “We are not forcing you to marry. Let us know if you will. Otherwise you will say we are forcing you to marry her,” he said, making clear the court’s position.

The lawyer, upon taking instructions from the accused rapist, informed the court that the accused can’t marry the victim as he is already married.

“I wanted to marry her. But she refused. Now I cannot, as I am already married. Trial is going on, charges are yet to be framed,” the accused told the court.

“You should have thought before seducing and raping the young girl. You knew you are a government servant,” CJI Bobde told the lawyer appearing for the accused.

Other judges on the bench included Justice A.S. Bopanna and Justice V. Ramasubramanian.

Dismissing the petition by the accused as withdrawn, the top court in its order said “However, there shall be stay of arrest of the petitioners for a period of eight weeks. Thereafter, the Trial Court will decide the question of the liberty of the petitioners.”

Describing it as “atrocious”, the Bombay high court had set-aside the trial court order granting anticipatory bail to the accused who has moved the top court against the high court order.

The accused had repeatedly raped the victim when she was 16 years old and studying in 9th standard. However, when things came to light, the accused’s mother dissuaded the victim's mother from reporting the matter to police. She assured that when the victim turns 18 she will be married to the accused. But that did not happen and a complaint was filed after a gap of two years.