India is amidst a heated debate as Delhi High Court is hearing batch of petitions in the Marital Rape PIL. While mainstream media has been going all out to publish endless blogs/articles in favour of criminalising marital rape as an offence, it fails to put out the arguments objectively from the other side.
Currently, social media campaigns have been devised and promoted against anyone who questions criminalisation of marital rape. Without understanding the basic arguments from defence, any man who is opposing the same with facts, has been labelled as a Rapist, Potential Wife Rapist, Men who do not understand Consent, etc.
However, far from what mainstream and other paid media/YouTubers try to impose on readers, here is a ready reckoner for all who want to understand balanced arguments why yet another one sided women centric law, will only enhance the legal extortion industry against husbands, while genuine victims will be still struggling for justice.
The video (at the end of the article) has been put out by Deepika Narayan Bhardwaj, documentary filmmaker, which should answer several questions in the minds of young, middle age and elderly men and women, who want to speak up, argue, debate, but are currently made to shut up by extremist feminists.
What are the laws already in favour of wives at present?
1. Section 498A in The Indian Penal Code
Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty.—Whoever, being the husband or the relative of the husband of a woman, subjects such woman to cruelty shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine. Explanation.—For the purpose of this section, “cruelty” means—
(a) any wilful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to drive the woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or health (whether mental or physical) of the woman; or
(b) harassment of the woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any property or valuable security or is on account of failure by her or any person related to her to meet such demand.]
2. Section 509 in The Indian Penal Code
Word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman.—Whoever, intending to insult the modesty of any woman, utters any word, makes any sound or gesture, or exhibits any object, intending that such word or sound shall be heard, or that such gesture or object shall be seen, by such woman, or intrudes upon the privacy of such woman, shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine, or with both.
3. Section 377 in The Indian Penal Code
Unnatural offences.—Whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal, shall be punished with 1[imprisonment for life], or with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to ten years, and shall also be liable to fine. Explanation.—Penetration is sufficient to constitute the carnal intercourse necessary to the offence described in this section.
4. Section 354 in The Indian Penal Code
Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty.—Whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any woman, intending to outrage or knowing it to be likely that he will thereby outrage her modesty, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.
5. The Protection of Women From Domestic Violence Act, 2005
3. Definition of domestic violence.—For the purposes of this Act, any act, omission or commission or conduct of the respondent shall constitute domestic violence in case it—
(a) harms or injures or endangers the health, safety, life, limb or well‑being, whether mental or physical, of the aggrieved person or tends to do so and includes causing physical abuse, sexual abuse, verbal and emotional abuse and economic abuse; or
(b) harasses, harms, injures or endangers the aggrieved person with a view to coerce her or any other person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any dowry or other property or valuable security; or
(c) has the effect of threatening the aggrieved person or any person related to her by any conduct mentioned in clause (a) or clause (b); or
(d) otherwise injures or causes harm, whether physical or mental, to the aggrieved person. Explanation I.—For the purposes of this section,—
(i) “physical abuse” means any act or conduct which is of such a nature as to cause bodily pain, harm, or danger to life, limb, or health or impair the health or development of the aggrieved person and includes assault, criminal intimidation and criminal force;
(ii) “sexual abuse” includes any conduct of a sexual nature that abuses, humiliates, degrades or otherwise violates the dignity of woman;
(iii) “verbal and emotional abuse” includes—
(a) insults, ridicule, humiliation, name calling and insults or ridicule specially with regard to not having a child or a male child; and
(b) repeated threats to cause physical pain to any person in whom the aggrieved person is interested.
(iv) “economic abuse” includes—
(a) deprivation of all or any economic or financial resources to which the aggrieved person is entitled under any law or custom whether payable under an order of a court or otherwise or which the aggrieved person requires out of necessity including, but not limited to, household necessities for the aggrieved person and her children, if any, stridhan, property, jointly or separately owned by the aggrieved person, payment of rental related to the shared household and maintenance;
(b) disposal of household effects, any alienation of assets whether movable or immovable, valuables, shares, securities, bonds and the like or other property in which the aggrieved person has an interest or is entitled to use by virtue of the domestic relationship or which may be reasonably required by the aggrieved person or her children or her stridhan or any other property jointly or separately held by the aggrieved person; and
(c) prohibition or restriction to continued access to resources or facilities which the aggrieved person is entitled to use or enjoy by virtue of the domestic relationship including access to the shared household. Explanation II.—For the purpose of determining whether any act, omission, commission or conduct of the respondent constitutes “domestic violence” under this section, the overall facts and circumstances of the case shall be taken into consideration.
6. Section 125 in The Code Of Criminal Procedure, 1973 – Maintenance of wives, children and parents
(1) If any person having sufficient means neglects or refuses to maintain-
(2) Such allowance shall be payable from the date of the order, or, if so ordered, from the date of the application for maintenance.
(3) If any person so ordered fails without sufficient cause to comply with the order, any such Magistrate may, for every breach of the order, issue a warrant for levying the amount due in the manner provided for levying fines, and may sentence such person, for the whole or any part of each month’ s allowances remaining unpaid after the execution of the warrant, to imprisonment for a term which may extend to one month or until payment if sooner made: Provided that no warrant shall be issued for the recovery of any amount due under this section unless application be made to the Court to levy such amount within a period of one year from the date on which it became due: Provided further that if such person offers to maintain his wife on condition of her living with him, and she refuses to live with him, such
Magistrate may consider any grounds of refusal stated by her, and may make an order under this section notwithstanding such offer, if he is satisfied that there is just ground for so doing. Explanation.- If a husband has contracted marriage with another woman or keeps a mistress, it shall be considered to be just ground for his wife’ s refusal to live with him.
(4) No Wife shall be entitled to receive an allowance from her husband under this section if she is living in adultery, or if, without any sufficient reason, she refuses to live with her husband, or if they are living separately by mutual consent.
(5) On proof that any wife in whose favour an order has been made under this section is living in adultery, or that without sufficient reason she refuses to live with her husband, or that they are living separately by mutual consent, the Magistrate shall cancel the order.
7. Section 376B in The Indian Penal Code
Whoever has sexual intercourse with his own wife, who is living separately, whether under a decree of separation or otherwise, without her consent, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which shall not be less than two years but which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine.
What is the Marital Rape PIL About?
The petitioners are seeking to do away with the exception under Rape laws:
Section 375 IPC (Exception) — Sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under fifteen years of age, is not rape.
Primary argument by petitioners is that this violates sexual autonomy of a woman just because she is married.
- Human Rights cannot be limited to one Gender alone, nor can their violation be seen from a Gender perspective
- When India is pushing for one more biased law in favour of wives, we cannot reject discussing the gross abuse and misuse that has led to death of several men in India
- In December 2017, 31-year-old Arvind Bharti, left a 23 page suicide note documenting torture from his ex-wife. Initially he spent 8-years fighting a false dowry case by his wife. He officially then got divorced by paying alimony to a woman who had falsely charged him in a criminal case. However, his ordeal did not end there. When Arvind was about to remarry, his ex-wife implicated him in a false rape case, suggesting that she will not let him settle with any other woman. With just one statement of his ex-wife, Arvind was sent behind bars for 15 days without even a medical examination. His suicide note read that a man becomes criminal on mere complaint by woman. Even after his death, Delhi Police refused to even register an FIR against his ex-wife, until Men’s Rights Activists hit the road demanding her arrest
- In January 2022, a court in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, a woman who was married thrice, without taking divorce from previous husbands, filed rape on 4th man who was her live-in partner. The judge acquitted this 4th man, clearly acknowledging that this was a false rape case, however, no order or fine or punishment for the false accuser woman.
100 Other Countries Have Criminalised Marital Rape, Why Not India?
Petitioners are arguing that 100 other countries have criminalised Marital Rape, but India remains in the list amongst those backward countries which has failed to do so.
What petitioners fail to inform our citizens, that India is the only country in the world, where a Man is charged for Rape (on pretext of marriage), if he backs out from marrying a woman after consensual relationship/affair. Even if a woman was in a consensual affair with the man for 1, 2, 5 or even 10 years and the marriage did not take place, the woman can file rape charges against her partner, alleging that “Her Consent” was purely given for several years, only because he “promised” to marry her.
A woman’s statement alone is sufficient to land a man in jail – irrespective of her medical examination and other evidences.
The countries which the petitioners cite in the PIL have GENDER NEUTRAL LAWS – Be it for Rape, Domestic Violence, Stalking, Sexual Harassment. In countries like USA and UK, prima facie investigation by the police is so thorough, that most false cases are not even registered, while in India our police is bound by the law, to first register the complain and then investigate.
2005 – Supreme Court Calls Section 498A a Shield, Not Assassin’s Weapon
The abuse and misuse of this heavily biased woman centric law was so much, that even countries like the USA issued circulars to their citizens to be wary of getting married in India, as they could be possibly implicated in a false (criminal) dowry case.
2014 – Supreme Court Arnesh Kumar Judgement on 498A
In this particular judgement, Supreme Court laid down guidelines for police not to arrest men and their families randomly without basic checks and balances. However, despite this judgement, lakhs of men, their parents, their siblings (married/unmarried) continue to get arrested on mere statement by wife.
As per NCRB reports, only 8-10% of such Men and their relatives are found to be guilty. The rest get acquitted.
Till date, there has been NO WOMAN JAILED for filing a FALSE 498A
55% Indians Cheat On Their Spouses, Most Are Women (Survey)
When women rights champions argue not to discuss misuse of laws, why do they shy away from statistics of women living in adultery. A Marital Rape law will become the easiest tool, if they want to get rid of their husbands, or even perhaps retain the husband as legally wedded provider and continue their illegitimate relationships outside marriage.
Evidence In Marital Rape Cases
Burden of proof will rest solely on the husband. What possibly could be his defence, when his wife – after consensual sex – chooses to file a marital rape case against him? THINK. Currently, the one’s in favour argue, that investigating officer will be in-charge to decide whether the case is genuine of false. Just imagine!
A bail in India can take 1 month, 6 months, 1-10 years – depending on the spending power of the man and his family.
Currently, there are several false rape cases already being filed by women against father-in-law, brother-in-law to merely get them arrested. Section 377 is also being already filed against husbands to merely implicate them in unnatural sex (criminal) offence.
Laws cannot be seen from the eyes of one gender, as crime is not committed only by one gender. It is time that the law makers recognise that crime is done by either genders. There is no denial that married women are living in sexually abusive marriages, but there needs to be thorough thought through before passing one more law which could harass husbands and their families – which could perhaps result in loss of their lifelong accumulated wealth or even death.
ALSO READ –
Marital Rape PIL | Advocate J Sai Deepak Representing Men’s Rights NGO Faces Personal Attacks By Feminists; Responds Gracefully
If Judiciary Crosses Line, It Would Become Very Dangerous Precedent | J Sai Deepak Argues Against Criminalisation Of Marital Rape
Marital Rape PIL | Read Written Submissions By Advocate Raj Kapoor For Hridey NGO, & Men Welfare Trust
Citizens For Family System Write To PM Modi To Reject Marital Rape Law That Attempts To Dissolve More & More Marriages in India
WATCH FULL VIDEO –
Join our Facebook Group or follow us on social media by clicking on the icons below
Blogging about Equal Rights for Men or writing about Gender Biased Laws is often looked upon as controversial, as many 'perceive' it Anti-Women. Due to this grey area - where we demand Equality in the true sense for all genders - most brands distance themselves from advertising on a portal like ours.
We, therefore, look forward to your support as donors who understand our work and are willing to partner in this endeavour to spread this cause. Do support our work to counter one sided gender biased narratives in the media.
To make an instant donation, click on the "Donate Now" button above. For information regarding donation via Bank Transfer, click here.
Alternately, you can also donate to us via our UPI ID: voiceformenindia@hdfcbank