Kochi: Kerala high court ordered that a legal marriage between a rape accused and the victim can quash the rape case. The order was issued by Justice R Narayana Pisharadi while quashing a rape case in Kochi high court, Kerala.

Narayana Pisharadi was considering a rape case where a Pathanamthitta native allegedly raped a woman and later married her. The high court observed that in this case the accused promised to marry the girl, who consented for sexual intercourse based on the promise of marriage. Then the girl filed a case accusing him of rape. The accused later married the victim. The couple informed the court that the couple has now been living peacefully together.

The court repeated that any case where a man promises to marry the woman and obtains consent from her before having sexual intercourse and later marries her will not constitute a compromise between the two. It also stated that it is a fulfilment of the promise made by the accused to the victim, said the court.

The court then mentioned that a promise made by an accused to marry the victim was not a false statement and not made with the lustful intent.  This was evident from the fact that he married the woman within a short period after the incident, said the court.

In this case, the marriage was solemnised under the Special Marriage Act, 1954 and not merely a registration of marriage under Section 15 of that Act. In this case, the court identified what happened has only acknowledged the consensual physical relationship between the victim and the accused.

The court also said the prosecution of the petitioner for committing rape would be an abuse of the process of the court and continuation of the case would cause discomfort to the couple. This may also build problems in their happy married life, observed the court.