Promise Of Marriage Made In Good Faith But Subsequently Not Fulfilled: Supreme Court Quashes Rape Case

Team SoOLEGAL 6 Aug 2022 3:17am

Promise Of Marriage Made In Good Faith But Subsequently Not Fulfilled: Supreme Court Quashes Rape Case

New Delhi: While quashing a rape case, the Supreme Court's bench of Justices SK Kaul and MM Sundresh recently observed that there is a distinction between a false promise of marriage and a breach of a promise made in good faith but not subsequently fulfilled.

From 2009 to 2011, the appellant and respondent No.2 were unquestionably in a consensual relationship (or 2013 as stated by the respondent No.2). According to respondent No.2, the consensual physical relationship was based on the appellant's assurance of marriage. After three years, the complaint was filed in 2016, and a FIR dated 16.12.2016 was registered under Sections 376 and 420 of the IPC.

"We hearing learned counsel for parties, we find ex facie the registration of FIR in the present case is abuse of the criminal process," the bench stated.

Also, “the parties chose to have physical relationship without marriage for a considerable period of time. For some reason, the parties fell apart. It can happen both before and after marriage. Thereafter also three years passed when respondent No.2 decided to register a FIR. The facts are so glaring as set out aforesaid by us that we have no hesitation in quashing the FIR dated 16.12.2016 and bringing the proceedings to a close. Permitting further proceedings under the FIR would amount to harassment to the appellant through the criminal process itself."

We are fortified to adopt this course of action by the judicial view in (2019) 9 SCC 608 titled "Pramod Suryabhan Pawar Vs. State of Maharashtra & Anr.", where the Supreme Court quashed the FIR in the factual scenario where complainant was aware that there existed obstacles in marrying the accused and still continued to engage in sexual relations. A distinction was made between a false promise to marry made with the understanding that it will be broken and a breach of promise made in good faith but later not fulfilled. This was in the context of Section 375 Explanation 2 and Section 90 of the IPC, 1860.

Tagged: Marriage   Good Faith  
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