The Madhya Pradesh High Court has dismissed a rape case against a 30-year-old man, stating that the prosecutrix, an adolescent aged 17 or 18, is capable of making conscious decisions about her well-being. The court’s order, issued on July 12, took into account the development and maturity of an adolescent in that age group, concluding that there was no intention of wrongdoing in the case.
According to the prosecution, the petitioner and the girl met on Facebook and subsequently communicated over the phone. In December 2020, the petitioner invited the prosecutrix to meet him at a hotel, where he allegedly sexually assaulted her and coerced her into intercourse. The man was also accused of threatening to release obscene pictures of her and falsely promising marriage, leading her to believe he was unmarried. In 2022, the man revealed that he was already married and could not marry her.
Based on the prosecutrix’s complaint, an FIR was registered against the man. However, the court observed that the prosecutrix, being in the age group of 17 or 18, is capable of making conscious decisions regarding her well-being, and there was no intention to commit rape or harm on the petitioner’s part.
The petitioner’s counsel argued that the FIR was false and filed after one year, and any intercourse that occurred was consensual. The prosecution opposed the petitioner’s plea, claiming that the case should not be quashed because the prosecutrix is a minor. Nonetheless, the court decided that proceeding with the case before the trial court would serve no purpose given the unique facts and circumstances. Ultimately, the court allowed the petitioner’s prayer and quashed the rape case against the accused.