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Rape Case Can't Be Quashed Just Because Victim Agrees For It, Says HC On FIR Against Bhushan Kumar

A case of rape cannot be quashed merely because the victim granted her consent to do so, the Bombay High Court said on Wednesday while expressing its disinclination to quash an FIR of rape registered against T-Series owner Bhushan Kumar.

Rape Case Can't Be Quashed Just Because Victim Agrees For It, Says HC On FIR Against Bhushan Kumar
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A case of rape cannot be quashed merely because the victim granted her consent to do so, the Bombay High Court said on Wednesday while expressing its disinclination to quash an FIR of rape registered against T-Series owner Bhushan Kumar.

Kumar had filed the petition seeking for the FIR to be quashed on the ground that the victim took back her complaint and consented for the same to be set aside.

A division bench of Justices A S Gadkari and P D Naik, however, noted that merely because the complainant was granting her consent was not ground enough to quash the first information report (FIR) alleging rape.

"Merely because the parties are consenting does not mean an FIR under section 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code should be quashed. We have to see the contents of the FIR, the statements recorded to see if the crime was heinous or not. The relationship (in this case) from the contents does not seem consensual," the court said.

Kumar's advocate Niranjan Mundargi told the court that the FIR was registered in July 2021 for an incident that was allegedly happening since 2017.

He said that a B-summary report (false case or no case made out against the accused) had been filed by the police before the concerned magistrate's court.

A local politician Mallikarjun Pujari filed a protest petition against such B-summary, claiming he had helped the woman register the FIR, however the woman had granted her consent to close the proceedings.

The magistrate's court rejected the police's report in April 2022.

The high court on Wednesday perused the FIR, the affidavit submitted by the complainant woman giving her consent for the case to be quashed and the order passed by the magistrate's court.

The bench was of the opinion that the material did not reflect that the relationship between the accused and the woman was consensual.

"Contents of the consent affidavit are not sufficient to quash FIR. Generally under section 376, FIR can be quashed with the consent of the complainant. But then that is after the FIR or the affidavit shows that there was a consensual relationship. Here the complainant is only saying she doesn't want to proceed with the case due to 'circumstantial misunderstanding'," the court said.

When the bench expressed its disinclination to allow the petition and quash the case, Mundargi sought time to submit further material in support of the plea.

The bench then posted the matter for further hearing on July 2, 2023.

- With PTI Input

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