#MenToo: Law used for fueds in many break-ups, say HCs
Two casino employees of Goa had got into a love affair in 2013. Yogesh Palkar once took his girlfriend home to introduce to his parents but found out that nobody was at home. The girl spent night at his home and then eventually several days after that as well they remained into a sexual relationship. But when it came to marriage Palkar refused to marry her she belonged to a lower cast. The girl filed a rape case against him as she had given her sexual consent out of his promises for marriage. Last year, the Goa bench of the Bombay high court acquitted Palekar based on evidence of a “deep love affair” between the two.
There have been many such cases where in women have showed a sexual consent out of trust for commitment and marriage but have reported it as rape after men step back from their promises. The Bombay High Court in 2017 had ruled pertaining to one such case, “Consenting adults indulging in sexual relationship are fully aware of consequences and must bear the same.”
The arrest of actor Karan Oberoi (in pic) after a 34-year-old woman accused him of rape has again brought the issue back into focus, fueling a debate on men’s rights in such cases.
In April 2017, Justice Pratibha Rani of the Delhi HC acquitted a man in a similar allegation of rape. The HC observed that in a “number of cases where both persons out of their own will and choice, develop a consensual physical relationship, when the relationship breaks due to some reason, the women use the law as a weapon for vengeance and personal vendetta”. Calling out for a clear demarcation between rape and consensual sex, the judge said: “They tend to convert such consensual acts as an incident of rape out of anger and frustration, thereby defeating the very purpose of the provision.” In January 2019, Justice Nitin Sambre of the Bombay high court granted anticipatory bail to a man in a rape case after observing an “unexplained delay of almost 16 months” an the FIR being lodged and variations in facts mentioned in it.
Acquittals and anticipatory bails in such cases- where the girl alleges her consent to physical intimacy was based on ‘promises of marriage’s on the rise, say lawyers. Advocate Hitesh Jain said, “While each case has to be tested on its facts, false FIRs after promises are broken, appear to outnumber cases where a man may have had ‘mala fide intentions in promising marriage’ from the very beginning.”