The petitioner argued that the court of the first instance had erroneously concluded that the petitioner had obtained the prosecutor’s consent to intercourse on the basis of false marriage promises. A man convicted in a lower court for raping a woman whom he met on the Tinder app has been released on bail.
A single judge bench of Justice Anoop Kumar Mendiratta was hearing an application moved by the man seeking “suspension of sentence and release” on bail during the pendency of an appeal moved by the man before the high court.
The applicant had challenged the judgment and sentence order of the trial Court of holding him guilty of an offence under Section 376(2)(n), (Penalty for Repeated Rape of Same Woman) convicted of a crime in the Indian penal code and sentencing him to undergo rigorous imprisonment of 10 years along with fine of Rs 6 lakh. The trial court had acquitted the appellant for an offence under Section 313 (Causing miscarriage without a woman’s consent) of the IPC.
The High Court, in an order dated 12 October, had reiterated that at the stage of suspension of sentence during the period of probation and bail pending judgment on the appeal, the appellate court has to examine if there is any patent infirmity in the order of conviction that renders the conviction prima facie erroneous.
The High Court also ruled that the evidence could not be re-evaluated or analyzed in order to stop enforcement of the judgment and that no detailed observation on the merits was necessary at this stage.
Petitioner argued that the court of the first instance had erroneously concluded that the petitioner had obtained consent to intercourse on the basis of a false promise of marriage. It argued that the first-instance judgment was plainly illegal because it contained obvious omissions.
The accused claimed the woman herself blogged on social media, claiming that she did not believe in the institution of marriage and that there was no doubt about the same. The Applicant stated that she did not believe in the idea of marriage herself, so it was unlikely that she misunderstood her promise to marry because of her actions and circumstances.
On the other hand, the prosecutor stated that the woman did not know the applicant’s marital status and her social media posts/blogs could not be trusted as their thought processes could change, which the prosecution attributed to falsehoods. He insisted that he did not rule out believing that there was a deceived promise.
After considering both parties’ arguments, the High Court held that the woman’s social media blogs/posts appeared to reflect her reservations about supporting the idea of marriage and cohabitation. The above observation must be limited because the blog was created before the incident was reported,” the court noted.
The Court of Appeal further held that the sexual encounter between the applicant and the woman was entirely voluntary. Noting that the evidence submitted by the applicant required examination. The court determined that the evidence relating to the June 10, 2015 case also merited further review in light of the defence evidence presented on behalf of the petitioner
Evidence should not be re-evaluated or analyzed for enforcement purposes at this stage, but the vulnerability of the record should be taken into account. It may also be noticed that the disposal of the appeal is likely to take some time.
Considering the evidence on record and the “Infirmities” pointed out by the appellant, the high court withheld the man’s judgment pending appeal and ordered against individual bail of Rs 25000 with two guarantees subject to the conditions.