July 20, 2010

Mumbai Mirror

A girl being raped would ‘resist fiercely’: HC

High Court sets aside conviction of alleged rapist because teenaged victim testified she lay there with her eyes closed and did not scream for help. Picking flaws in the ‘unnatural conduct’ and testimony of a teenaged girl, the Bombay High Court has set aside the conviction of a man accused of raping her. The HC raised its doubts about the incident because the girl testified that she lay still with her eyes closed, did not scream for help or ‘fiercely resist’ the alleged rapist.
In January, the Ambajogai sessions court convicted Beed’s Ganesh Korde, 25, for rape and sentenced him to seven years imprisonment. The victim – who had claimed to be a minor – was alone at home on June 10, 2006, when Korde barged in, threatened her, undressed her, raped her and fled the scene.

The girl informed her parents when they returned and a complaint of rape was registered against Korde.

During the trial, the girl testified that she did not know Korde but didn’t ask him who he was when he entered the house. She stated that Korde pushed her to the floor and forced himself on her. But there was no scuffle between them, the girl testified, adding that she was ‘lying with (her) eyes closed when he began undressing her’.

Justice Shrihari Davare of the Aurangabad Bench of the HC observed, “In the natural course of events, the victim could have resisted and a scuffle would have taken place between her and Korde. It is curious and surprising to note that no such scuffled occurred. Also, when Korde was undressing her, although her hands and legs were free, she simply lay down with her eyes closed.

“This appears to be an unnatural conduct. The victim would have shouted and obstructed the accused. In view of such infirmities, her testimony comes under the cloud of suspicion.”

As her testimony was ‘uncorroborated’ Justice Davare noted, “Inaction on the victim’s part and Korde’s presence in her house for two hours speaks volumes for themselves.”

Unfortunately, for the victim, even the medical evidence didn’t establish rape. Evidence suggested that she was not a minor as claimed, the HC noted.

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