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Himachal Pradesh HC refuses bail for rape accused, says some men fail to understand when a girl says ‘no’

A view of the High Court at Shimla in Himachal Pradesh. File   | Photo Credit: R.V. Moorthy

“No means no — the simplest of sentences has become the most difficult for some men to understand,” was the observation made by Himachal Pradesh High Court as it rejected a bail plea of a rape accused on Wednesday.

Dismissing the petition, Jusctice Anoop Chitkara in his judgement observed: “No means no — the simplest of sentences has become the most difficult for some men to understand. ‘No’ does not mean ‘yes,’ it does not mean that the girl is shy, it does not mean that the girl is asking a man to convince her, it does not mean that he has to keep pursuing her. The word ‘no’ doesn’t need any further explanation or justification. It ends there, and the man has to stop. Be that as it may, the victim, in this case, said ‘no’ to the accused when he started touching her, but he continued. It nowhere implies consent, or zeal and desire to explore and feel each other in romantic love.”

“...Neither the absence of resistance nor the unwilling submission implies consent in any language. She explicitly said ‘no’ to the accused, but he did not stop. When the curriculum does not include proper sex education, the children raised by such societies fail the women time and again,” he added.

The accused, Suresh Kumar, 26, has been in custody since December 18, 2020, for allegedly offering the victim aged 17 a lift on his vehicle, and after that, instead of allowing her to alight, took the vehicle to an isolated place, and then after intimidation raped her despite her protests.

The incident took place in Rajgarh area of district Solan in Himachal Pradesh on December 17, and the accused later approached the court for regular bail.

The court also added that the victim voluntarily narrated the incident to her mother and prima facie pointed towards the genuineness of the incident.

“It would be correct to say that it was courageous for the victim to talk about the unfortunate incident to her mother and later come forward and report the same with the police. Furthermore, the scientific evidence points towards the presence of blood and semen on the victim’s underwear. It also states that no physical injuries were found on her body. As stated by the victim in her Section 164 CrPC statement that she had said ‘no’ for sex with the accused, and the accused told her not to cry; otherwise, he would force himself upon her. In such circumstances of threat and coercion in a secluded area, the victim was forced to cooperate with the accused, which explains the absence of physical injuries on her body, and the presence of semen, indicating unprotected sex,” observed the court.


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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 7:04:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/himachal-pradesh-hc-refuses-bail-for-rape-accused-says-some-men-fail-to-understand-when-a-girl-says-no/article34496293.ece

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