The Supreme Court has set aside a Madhya Pradesh High Court verdict to discharge a person accused of rape citing a delay in filing the first information report, Bar and Bench reported on Thursday.
A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and JB Pardiwala held that the High Court judgement was “disturbing” and “utterly incomprehensible”. The judges were hearing a petition filed by the father of the girl who died by suicide after giving birth to a child conceived with the accused person, according to Live Law.
The police had filed a case under Sections 376 (punishment for rape) and 306 (abetment of suicide) of the Indian Penal Code, and provisions of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act dealing with aggravated penetrative sexual assault.
While discharging the accused person, the High Court had observed that the girl herself had not approached the police.
“The story as narrated by the mother of the deceased seems to be doubtful on the ground of delay [in filing the FIR],” the court had said.
The High Court had taken note of the mother’s statement that the girl wanted to marry the accused person as they were in a relationship, Bar and Bench reported. The High Court also took into consideration that the girl was over 18 years of age on the date of the alleged offence, and was in a relationship with the accused person willingly.
However, the Supreme Court in its judgement said that although the High Court judgement devoted two paragraphs on the subject of whether the girl was an adult, it did not record any specific finding about her age.
“At the cost of repetition, we state that the impugned order of the High Court is utterly incomprehensible,” the Supreme Court said. “We have yet to come across a case where the High Court has thought fit to discharge an accused charged with the offence of rape on the ground of delay in the registration of the FIR.”