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Rape law: clear conflict between IPC and POCSO Act, SC tells govt.

A view of Supreme Court of India building in New Delhi.   | Photo Credit: PTI

A chink in the colonial era Indian Penal Code (IPC), allowing a man to have sexual intercourse with his child wife, has led the Supreme Court to give a directive to the Central government.

An exception to Section 375 in the IPC does not find a man guilty to having sexual intercourse with his 15-year-old wife. This exception ensures that he will not be charged for rape even though child marriage is a crime.

The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act of 2012 defines 'children' as those aged below 18. It has specific provisions declaring that 'penetrative sexual assault' and 'aggressive penetrative sexual assault' against children below 18 is rape.

Nobel prize winner Kailash Satyarthi, through his organisation Bachpan Bachao Andolan, appealed to the Supreme Court on Thursday for help to end this "statutorily backed" crime against children.

In a petition before a Bench led by Chief Justice of India J.S. Khehar, the organisation highlighted the conflict between the IPC and the POCSO Act.

Mr. Satyarthi wants the apex court to clear the conflict between the IPC and the POCSO Act.

The apex court has directed the government to address the issue within four months. If not satisfied with the government's response, the Bench asked Mr. Satyarthi to approach the Supreme Court on the same grounds for immediate resolution.


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Printable version | Dec 2, 2021 4:24:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/Rape-law-clear-conflict-between-IPC-and-POCSO-Act-SC-tells-govt./article16992085.ece

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