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Happy marriage saves man from rape charges

A court here has acquitted a man charged with kidnapping a minor girl and forcing her to marry him, after observing that she was happy with her married life.

Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau acquitted Ajay of the kidnapping charge.

‘In the present case, both the girl and the boy being happily married with a young child, any hyper-technical view would be devastating for the young couple,’ Judge Lau said in a recent order.

‘Exceptions and allowances have to be made while considering the age of consent/protection keeping in view the changing social attitudes and social sensibilities and the situation in rural India.’

It observed that early marriage is a norm and acceptable in diverse cultures and religions, particularly where the age-gap between the youngsters are within the acceptable limits and no exploitative coercive situation is reflected.

According to the prosecution, Ajay kidnapped the girl from her father Nepal Singh’s house in Nov 2007 with the intent of forcing her to marry him or seducing her for illicit intercourse.

It was further alleged that the accused repeatedly raped the girl.

The court, during the trial, observed that the girl had voluntarily gone with the Ajay, who was known to her, after telling her parents. She got married to the accused in November 2007, a fact which has been admitted by her father and brother.

The court also observed that girl was more than 18 years of age when she got married to the accused.
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