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Bombay HC sets aside conviction of 19 year old in rape case

Bombay HC sets aside conviction of 19 year old in rape case

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Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], February 6 (ANI): The Bombay High Court (HC) on Thursday suspended the sentence of 10 years' rigorous imprisonment and gave bail to a 19 year old who was convicted by the lower court on charges of raping his minor cousin as the victim stated it was a consensual act and not rape.
In its judgement the HC said it had relied on the victim's statement under Section 164 of the Criminal Procedure code before the magistrate where she has said that it was not rape but a consensual act, not once, but at least 4-5 times.
The victim resiled from her statements stating that her earlier narrative of the boy sexually assaulting her was made on the instance of a class teacher.
Though the court relied on the statement of the victim about the sexual act being consensual, Justice Sandeep Shinde of Bombay HC has made the observation that the victim, in this case, being a 15 year old minor cannot give a valid consent in the eyes of law. He noted that consensual sex between minors has been in a legal grey area.
The court said that after consideration of the facts that the mother of the victim was unfriendly to prosecution and the victim has disowned some portions of her statement recorded under Section 164 CrPC, the appellant is to be released on bail with reasonable terms and conditions. (ANI)

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