The Supreme Court on Monday, March 1, granted eight-week protection to a man who was accused of rape by his former partner on the pretext of marriage.
Commenting on the case, the Apex Court said that when two people are living as husband and wife, the act of sexual intercourse between them could not be called rape.
"When two people are living as husband and wife, however brutal the husband is, can the act of sexual intercourse between them be called rape?" said Chief Justice of India SA Bobde while granting 8-week protection from arrest to the accused, reported Live Law.
The statements came as the court was hearing a petition filed by Vinay Pratap Singh. Singh was accused of rape by his partner who was in a relationship with him for two years. In the FIR filed in 2019, his former partner alleged that he had told her he would marry her but had married another person that year.
"Making false promise (of) marriage is wrong. No one should give false promise - either man or woman. Even women should not give promise," the CJI said.
The petitioner, Singh, asked the court to quash the FIR because, during their relationship, the couple had consensual sexual intercourse. Senior lawyer Vibha Makhija, appearing for Singh told the court there was no marriage and that it was only a relationship.
Singh also argued that the woman had been in a relationship with other men as well and the charges of rape were to harass him.
NDTV reported that the statements were refuted by the woman's lawyer, who argued that Singh had promised to marry her. The lawyer also claimed that Singh had brutally abused the woman and furnished medical records as evidence.
It is important to note that CJI Bobde's remarks did not go well with many, especially representatives of women's movements and feminists. In another case, the Chief Justice of India had asked a government employee, who is accused of raping a girl, if he would "marry her", triggering a massive storm on social media.
Reports have stated that over 3,500 concerned citizens have issued an open letter demanding that he step down from the position and issue an apology for his remarks in court.