Delhi HC declines plea to direct Centre to criminalise marital rape and make it grounds for divorce, says framing laws is domain of legislature

Since marital rape at present is not a crime, there is no FIR registered by a wife against her husband in any police station, the petition had said.

Press Trust of India July 09, 2019 15:02:13 IST
Delhi HC declines plea to direct Centre to criminalise marital rape and make it grounds for divorce, says framing laws is domain of legislature
  • The Delhi High Court Tuesday declined to entertain a plea seeking direction to the Centre to frame guidelines for registration of FIR for marital rape as also laws for making it a ground for divorce

  • The court said it cannot direct framing of laws as it is the domain of the legislature and not the judiciary

  • The petitioner had also sought direction to the government for fixing appropriate punishment/ penalties for violation of the guidelines and laws to be framed and enacted

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court Tuesday declined to entertain a plea seeking direction to the Centre to frame guidelines for registration of FIR for marital rape as also laws for making it a ground for divorce.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar disposed of the PIL saying the court cannot direct framing of laws as it is the domain of the legislature and not the judiciary. The court also observed that one after another, PILs are filed in the court for framing of laws.

Delhi HC declines plea to direct Centre to criminalise marital rape and make it grounds for divorce says framing laws is domain of legislature

Representational image. PTI

The PIL had sought that there should be a clear guideline for registration of cases related to marital rape under framed guidelines and laws, so that accountability, responsibility and liability of the authorities concerned can be fixed.

The plea was filed in the high court after the Supreme Court refused to entertain it and asked the petitioner, advocate Anuja Kapur, to approach the high court for relief.

She had also sought direction to the government for fixing appropriate punishment/ penalties for violation of the guidelines and laws to be framed and enacted respectively.

"Marital rape is no less an offence than murder, culpable homicide or rape per se. It denigrates the honour and dignity of a human being, and reduces her to a chattel to be utilised for one's self convenience and comfort. It reduces a woman to a corpse, living under the constant fear of hurt or injury. Medical evidence proves that rape has severe and long-lasting consequences for women," the plea had said.

Kapur said in her plea that at present there is an ambiguity in registering marital rape and deciding punishment under ambit of law.

"There is a lot of confusion with the concerned authorities that under which law they should register an FIR / case related to marital rape. There should be a clear guideline for registration of the case of marital rape under framed guidelines and laws, so that accountability, responsibility and liability of the concerned authorities can be assigned and, penalties and punishments be awarded to safeguard the fundamental right guaranteed by the Constitution and dignity of the woman in marriage," the plea said.

Since marital rape at present is not a crime, there is no FIR registered by a wife against her husband in any police station, it had said. Rather, it is being compromised by the police authorities to maintain the sanctity of the marriage between the victim and the husband, it had added.

"As marital rape is not a ground for a divorce in Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937 and Special Marriage Act, 1954, it cannot be used as a ground for divorce and cruelty against husband," it had said.

Updated Date:

also read

'Reservation not at odds with merit': SC upholds validity of OBC quota in NEET admissions
India

'Reservation not at odds with merit': SC upholds validity of OBC quota in NEET admissions

The top court said that examinations are not a proxy for merit and merit should be socially contextualised and re-conceptualised as an institution towards equality that we as a society value

'Expectation' cannot lead to forcible sex with wife, amicus curiae tells Delhi HC
India

'Expectation' cannot lead to forcible sex with wife, amicus curiae tells Delhi HC

The amicus’ submissions were in response to the court’s observation that there was a “quantitate difference” between a married and unmarried relationship, with the former entailing an element of expectation of a reasonable sexual relationship.

SC asks Supertech to refund with interest all homebuyers invested in twin towers of Noida
Business

SC asks Supertech to refund with interest all homebuyers invested in twin towers of Noida

The Supreme Court bench, which was hearing contempt petitions of home buyers, seeking refund with an interest of the amount paid to buy their flats directed the Supertech to pay the amount by 28 February