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Marital Rape in India – A Socio–Legal Critique

Aditi Duggal, Student, Symbiosis Law School, Noida

ABSTRACT

Rape is one of the most heinous offences that has been traumatizing and debilitating the virtues of morality and justice worldwide. Rape is not just limited to the parameters of forced sexual activity but it also affects the emotional, societal, mental and physical harmony of the victim. In a country like India where sexual sanctity is given extreme importance, the offense of rape has serious social consequences such as suicides and societal abandoning. Rape is the manifestation of gross cruelty and brutality which is pervading the society like a parasite that is deeply embedded and entrenched in the society.

The Supreme Court of India has appropriately described rape as “deathless shame and the gravest crime against human dignity.”[i] The offense of rape, when committed by a husband against his wife behind the sacramental closed doors of the matrimonial relationship, is all the more detestable and loathsome. Spousal rape or marital rape refers to the offense that is committed within the four walls of a marital sacrament. The current legal provisions in the Indian legal system do not recognise or expressly penalise marital rape. The essay shall deal with the main questions that ought to be settled in this regard i.e. whether the existence of a martial relationship assumes the implied consent of wife with respect to all future sexual encounters with her husband. Marriage undoubtedly encompasses the right to sexual intimacy but it is to be decided if this right includes the right to forced and unconsented sexual intimacy.

Presently, there is no specific legal recourse available to a poor wife who is a victim of marital rape and she has to silently suffer these pangs of absolute animosity and acrimony at the hands of her husband. It is a serious offense and needs immediate legal and societal attention as it is not merely a denial of the right of basic dignity to a wife, but it is also a complete disregard to the marital sacrosanct. The husband has absolute legal immunity with respect to the physical relationship with his wife. The most reasonable justification behind this can be the assumption of implied consent of wife owing to the existence of a matrimonial bond. Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code recognizes the offense of rape as one that falls within the ambit of all or any of the six prescribed parameters which mainly include the performance of sexual intercourse by a man against a woman without her will, against her consent, or by manipulated consent. The exception clearly states that “Sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under fifteen years of age, is not rape.” The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 also accords protection to women. However, no similar protection is given to the married woman by these statutes.

 A married woman is very much a person who reserves the right to dignity, equality, life and personal liberty as promised under Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India and her being the wife of a man nowhere allows for abridgment of either of these rights. Moreover, the special status accorded to women by Section 15(3) of the Constitution adds to the relative immunity that women enjoy when it comes to fundamental rights. The essay will critically evaluate this emerging issue of marital rape in India in the light of prevalent legal provisions and thereby present a possible answer to the aforementioned questions after considering relevant social and legal factors.

MARITAL RAPE IN INDIA: A SOCIO-LEGAL CRITIQUE

Her exhilaration was beyond measure. The excitement of experiencing the charm of a marital relationship, of having a life partner to share all her joys and sorrows was weighing heavily on her. She could see all her dreams come true in the new world that awaited her. Her fragile dreams of love and trust painted her little world red and the constant blush on her face was gaining subtle permanence. Who knew that the same blush will soon be replaced by wounds and scars which would be the visible identity of her married life? Who knew that she will be so inescapably caged in the four walls of the marital sacrosanct that she would be left with no option but to either endure silently or to rest in everlasting peace? Who knew that her sweet petite dreams of love and trust will be clouded and tarnished by the dark virulent storms of wild lust, anger and frustration? Who knew that her marriage was not about a mutual sense of a duty of care but it was just a matter of transfer of ownership coloured in the garb of custom and tradition? Who knew that she will soon be transformed to a case of extreme mental agony and shock in a rehabilitation centre? Such is the condition of multitudinous households in India where the existence of a marital bond between two people transforms into a license of unconsented sexual and physical manipulation of the wife by the husband. Marital rape can be most simply understood as the forced non-consensual intercourse by a husband against his wife. It can be further categorised into force-only rapes, battering rapes and sadistic rapes depending on the magnitude of violence and hostility.[ii]

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Various eminent organisations such as The United Nations Population Fund and The International Centre for Women (ICRW) have revealed that maximum amount of sexual violence exists within the parameters of socially acceptable relationships.[iii] It has been further observed that more than two-thirds of married women in India, between the age of fifteen and forty-nine have been beaten, raped or forced to provide sex.[iv] Furthermore, approximately 56% of Indian women believed occasional wife-beating to be justified.[v] These facts clearly indicate the frequency of incidents of marital rape in India where such extreme violation has been rendered justified and acceptable in the garb of the duties that a wife necessarily owes to her husband. It is true that the existence of a marital relationship between two individuals is, in itself, an implied recognition of the conjugal right to physical intimacy but whether this right excludes the right to consent of a wife is a debatable issue.

Eminent American feminist Catherine MacKinnon has very rightly said, “Politically, I call it rape whenever a woman has sex and feels violated.”[vi] Similar concerns have been voiced by various social welfare groups and organisations all across the world so as to facilitate the rights of a married woman within her marriage. Internationally, the legal and societal aspect with respect to marital rape has evolved and can be said to have attained a seemingly effective structure in the form of codification and implementation. It is to be noted that the traditional concept of marriage can be traced back to the theories of the implied irrevocable consent of wife in the contract of marriage,[vii] the notion of wife being a property in the patriarchal system of the society and the non-existence of the separate identity of a wife. The idea of rape within marriage conceived and gained substantial velocity in the latter half of the 20th century. International legal enactments gradually abolished marital rape exemptions or modified the laws concerning rape so as to incorporate this offense in the law books. Various countries have declared marital rape as an offense such as Albania, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bhutan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, and the list goes on.[viii] However, in India, the current legal provisions with respect to marital rape seem to still be in the initial stages of recognition and evolution.

India is truly known as the largest democracy which encompasses in its geographical territory a plethora of diverse cultures, customs, traditions and languages. It is not just a country with a set codified legal system; it is a resplendent assortment of varied religious and societal ideals and beliefs. Marriage, in the Indian social setup, is one of the most fragile, revered and significant relationships that deeply influences two households. The institution of marriage is replete with a variety of shades and hues and is intricately linked with the society at large through the spousal relationship. The husband and wife play multiple roles and owe multifaceted kind of duties and responsibilities to each other as well as the other members of the two families. Marriage in India, therefore, is a sensitive issue which revolves around and influences more lives than just two people and incorporates in its ambit a variety of other relationships that are conceived by way of this special union. The modern marital customs are a mere derivation from the ancient prevalent traditions and can be said to have become relatively lenient. Various inhuman “customs” of the past such as sati, child marriage, caste system etc. have been done away with and the society can be seen to have progressed towards the ideals of humanitarianism and equality as opposed to the stringent orthodoxy. However, traces of the old customs still find significant rooting in the present day notion of a marital relationship and the entire personal law relating to marriage and divorce is mostly based on the traditional beliefs which are ultimately sourced from the ancestral religious and customary texts and practises.

Therefore, it can be safely deduced that marriage in the present day India is a complicated issue dotted by prevalent acceptable orthodoxy as well as the new modern approach. The marital laws and the social existence of the relationship of marriage is presently undergoing an evolution and is in the process of moving from the old customary concepts of patriarchy, subordination of women and coverture to the novel ideas of rights, equality, liberty, etc. Therefore, although a major shift has come to pass in the societal perceptions of marriage, a further shift can be said to be going on. A practical example of the kind of social influence exerted by marriage in the current Indian scenario is of a woman who walked out of her marriage within five months. In her words, “It wasn’t just one thing, it was everything—my looks, the dowry I had brought, my family, even sex—nothing I did ever satisfied him,” According to her, the worst form of torture was not the public sarcasm or the private violence but it was the rape. She goes on to say, “He was my husband. He was the one who was supposed to protect me. But I couldn’t even tell my mother about what he was doing and what he made me do.”[ix]

Considering the Indian social backdrop, the victim’s mother in this case would not have understood the victim’s predicament as her grievance fell in the ambit of what can be termed as the spousal obligation of a wife towards a husband. Therefore, the biggest lacuna in the Indian system is not the lack of a legal code or the prevalence of male dominance, but it is the existence of an invisible ambiguous reluctance on the part of the society in its entirety to accept the notion of rape in marriage.

The Indian legal scenario in respect of marital rape is still in its evolutionary stage wherein a conflict of the traditional patriarchal approach and the modern, liberal and feminist approach can be seen and observed. The lack of a prescribed legal code to penalize marital rape and the spousal exemption under section 375 of the Indian Penal Code has gained significant disapproval recently in the form of suggested amendments and enactments by active organisations working in the interest of public welfare. Another parallel unresolved conflict can also be observed between the conjugal right to sexual intimacy and the concept of rape which is, in itself, an incessant cul-de-sac.

The existing law with respect to marital conflicts can be observed and analysed from a plethora of viewpoints. As far as the law of rape is concerned, Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code describes rape as sexual intercourse by a man with a woman if the act was done against her will, without her consent, with her consent (when her consent has been obtained by putting her or any person in whom she is interested in fear of death or of hurt OR when the man knows that he is not her husband, and that her consent is given because she believes that he is another man to whom she is or believes herself to be law­fully married OR when, at the time of giving such consent, by reason of unsoundness of mind or intoxication or the administration by him personally or through another of any stupe­fying or unwholesome substance, she is unable to understand the nature and consequences of that to which she gives consent.) and with or without her consent, when she is under sixteen years of age.[x] The only exception expressly stated is that sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under fifteen years of age, is not rape.[xi] Further sections in the code relate to punishment for rape,[xii] intercourse by a man with his wife during separation,[xiii] unnatural offences,[xiv] etc.

A vivid analysis of the aforementioned legal code clearly reveals a variety of ambiguities and loopholes, the most apparent one being that the definition itself is gender-specific. Men are equally prone to unconsented sexual manipulation as women. What makes it worse is that the patriarchal ideology substantiates absolute disbelief in this idea of masculinity being vulnerable to any kind of sexual exploitation.[xv] Further, the standard of proof required for a valid allegation under Section 375 is that a vaginal penetration must be proved. This is restrictive in the sense that only a penile-vaginal intercourse can be challenged under “rape” while equally devastating and ferocious acts like forced penile/oral, penile/anal, finger/vaginal or object/vaginal are left out of the prescribed legal ambit.[xvi] Although these exceptions have been dealt with in Sections 354 and 377, the seriousness of the crime stands mitigated. However, one of the most evident loopholes is that the offense of “rape” within the institution of marriage is an idea which is still unacceptable to the law of the land. The Hon’ble Delhi High Court has expressed that the application of Constitutional law would be a “ruthless destroyer of the marriage institution” and that it will only weaken the bonds of marriage.[xvii] The question, however, of the result of a clash between Constitutional law and personal law remains unanswered and abstruse. It needs to be understood marriage is commonly understood and respected as a sacrament and therefore any violation of that sacrament needs to be considered seriously. An analysis of the remedies available to women in this regard, therefore, also needs significant attention so as to arrive at a substantial conclusion about the formulation of a concrete opinion about prospective enactments.

The various existing laws that grant protection to a distressed wife and the legal paraphernalia available to a victim against the atrocities inflicted upon her by her husband also therefore need to be vividly discussed. One of the most significant statutes in this regard is the Protection of Domestic Violence Act, 2005. Section 498a of the Indian Penal Code, Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure and the various grounds available to a wife for the attainment of a decree of judicial separation or divorce also enable a woman to stand up and seek relief against any kind of marital abuse. The conglomeration of these legal provisions facilitating aggrieved women can be said to constitute a complete and sufficiently wholesome remedial system for the victimized wife in the sacred institution of a marital relationship. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has, in fact, termed these enabling provisions as “legal terrorism” owing to rampant abuse by women who harass their spouse and their families for material well-being.[xviii] The malignant application of the legal code so as to facilitate personal benefits can be seen to be on the rise year after year.[xix]

There have been various judicial pronouncements wherein the complexities of rape and marital disharmony have been evaluated and analysed by the Indian judiciary. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has time and again commented on the agony and the horror of rape in various judicial pronouncements. It has rightly observed that “Rape is thus not only a crime against the person of a woman (victim), it is a crime against the entire society. It destroys the entire psychology of a woman and pushes her into deep emotional crises. It is only by her sheer will power that she rehabilitates herself in the society which, on coming to know of the rape, looks down upon her in derision and contempt. Rape is, therefore, the most hated crime. It is a crime against basic human rights and is also violative of the victim’s most cherished of the Fundamental Rights, namely, the Right to Life contained in Art. 21.”[xx] The apex Court has further observed that “The rape laws do not, unfortunately, take care of the social aspect of the matter and are inept in many respects.” [xxi] The inadequacies of the existing laws and the loopholes that ought to be resolved have therefore also been pointed out by the Hon’ble Supreme Court. The present legal framework is designed in a way to support and strengthen the position of the husband in a marital relationship thereby upholding and venerating the patriarchal concept of marriage. However, certain amendments and new enactments have come up in the recent times which hint at the gradual dilution of this patriarchal approach with the modern evolutionary humanitarian concepts and ideals. The right to sexual privacy has been upheld by the Hon’ble Supreme Court as a part and parcel of the basic right to life guaranteed under Article 21.[xxii]

Rape by a husband is all the more wrenching for the victim as it is not just a physical violation but it is an absolute breach of the entire concept of marriage wherein the tenets of mutual love, care and trust are horribly defied by this act of utter animosity and hostility. The legal and constitutional rights of a wife can be said to be sacrificed at the altar of marriage.[xxiii] Traces of judicial outlook on marital rape can be seen in the cases of extreme violence between spouses which led to unfortunate circumstances. In Queen Empress v. Hurree Mohan Mythee,[xxiv] the accused was guilty of the death of his child-wife due to vaginal rupture caused as a consequence of rash sexual intercourse. The Calcutta High Court observed that mere non-application of the law of rape to a married couple does not imply that the wife is the absolute property of her husband irrespective of her health and safety.[xxv] The accused was found guilty of causing grievous hurt by performing rash and negligent act that endangered life and personal safety.[xxvi] Similar landmark judgment was given in the famous case of R v. Ahluwalia where an aggrieved wife was not held guilty for killing her husband after years of suffering in the form of extreme mental, physical, emotional and psychological abuse. In T. Sareetha v. T. Venkata Subbaiah,[xxvii] the Andhra Pradesh High Court observed that a decree of the restitution of conjugal rights is nothing but a judicial attempt to coerce the unwilling party to have sex against that person’s consent and freewill with the decree-holder. The same was, however, overruled by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Saroj Rani[xxviii] wherein it was settled that the decree of restitution of conjugal rights was in no way governmental invasion of the right to marital privacy.

Therefore, the judicial attitude can be said to be sympathetic and reasonable depending on the facts and circumstances of every case. The law cannot be said to be against the interests of the wife but in a stage of evolution so as to further incline and enable the interests of the aggrieved victim in a marital relationship. The rights of the wife in the marriage are safeguarded by legislations such as the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure and Section 498a of the India Penal Code. These legal provisions stand as a testimony to the power that rests in the hands of a married woman. Moreover, the notion of recognition and criminalization of marital rape is also being seriously considered and the objectionable exemption may be done away with in the near future. Various committees and organisations have suggested the amendment of ‘rape laws’ so as to bring about an end to the marital immunity enjoyed by the husband. Justice Verma Committee recommended the removal of the marital rape exemption. The Law Commission Reports have also been significantly instrumental in igniting the winds of change by positively dealing with the issue. The 42nd Law Commission Report clearly states that the marital exception in Section 375 should be done away with and that a whole new section should be incorporated so as to deal with this marital offense in a conclusive manner.[xxix] The subsequent report, however, disagreed with this proposition. Further, the 172nd Law Report also recommended the absolute deletion of the exception in Section 375 as forced sexual intercourse by a husband with his wife should be treated equally as an offence just as any physical violence by a husband against the wife is treated as an offence.[xxx]

An extensive analysis of the present social and legal situation in India with respect to marital rape leads to a variety of questions and issues that mandatorily need to be resolved first so as to approach the issue at hand. The first question that needs to be answered is that whether or not the legal inclusion of “rape” as an offense within marriage will be an effective solution to the problem. Further, it needs to be conclusively settled that India as a society has sufficiently evolved to accept a law concerning non-consensual marital sex as grave an offense as “rape”.  The issue that requires maximum attention herein is that whether the introduction of criminal law into the sacred institution of marriage will result in effective betterment or it will unleash an all the more intricate scenario by infesting the traditional norms with unnecessary legal interference. Viewing the situation from the perspective of an ardent feminist who seeks criminalization, the justifications that give rise to this argument primarily include the rights of a wife as per Constitutional law and the importance of consent. The driving fuel behind the argument for criminalization is the fact that “rape” is equally serious a crime for any offender irrespective of the existence of a marital relationship and that such acts need to be  seriously penalized and that marriage should not be treated as an instrument by men for forced sexual encounters with their spouse. On the other hand, the arguments for non-criminalization of this offense is the implied consent and contract theory, the traditional view treating women as property, policy of non-interference in the marital sacrosanct, difficult of proof and the epidemic of underreporting. Moreover, the overlap of rape and the conjugal right to have sex makes the situation even more complicated on the legal as well as social front.

In order to arrive at a substantial conclusion about the issue, attention also needs to be paid to the civil remedies that are already available to an aggrieved woman such as the Protection of Women from the Domestic Violence Act, 2005, Section 498a of the IPC etc. These provisions and other enabling provisions arm the Indian women to claim effective relief for any marital inconvenience or violence. It is also to be noted that no such specific provisions exist for the men who can also be said to be equally vulnerable to the possibility of unconsented sexual, physical or emotional agony in the marriage.

Forced and non-consensual sex is undoubtedly an extremely unfortunate event to happen and when it occurs within the four walls of the temple of marriage, it all the more traumatic as the delicate threads of faith and affection are vitiated and scattered. However, there can be no denial of the fact that the institution of marriage encompasses the connubial right to a sexual relationship between the spouses and that sex is socially acceptable as a part and parcel of marital existence in the ordinary course of life. It is, in fact, an implied right that the spouses share as a consequence of matrimony. The criminalization, therefore, of sexual intercourse in marriage in any form automatically manifests as a legal hindrance to the conjugal rights established and substantiated by the marriage in the first place. Moreover, if the entire problem is looked at from a purely technical perspective, what is bad in marital rape is probably not the sexual intercourse (it is a matter of mutual rights) but what is offensive and utterly objectionable is the violence, sadism and the brutality of the act. As far as the present laws are concerned, efficient and speedy redressal mechanisms lie to the women against their husbands for all the aforementioned objectionable grounds wherein women can seek civil remedies. In fact, the tendency of misuse of these enabling provisions has been commented on by the Hon’ble Delhi High Court wherein it has been aptly observed that “These provisions were though made with good intentions but the implementation has left a very bad taste and the move has been counter productive.”[xxxi]

Therefore, the question that remains to be settled is whether change in the law relating to marital rape will positively contribute to the Indian society. An unbiased comparison of a scenario in the light of existing laws and suggested amendments will facilitate a better understanding of the practical consequences of criminalized legal implementation. Assuming that the genuinely victimized wife “X” legally rises against her shallow husband in the present Indian scenario, she can seek monetary relief for herself as well as her children, or judicial restraint on the husband’s loathsome activities or file for divorce or obtain a decree of judicial separation or seek the assistance of various legal forums instituted for the overall welfare of women. If criminalization of marital rape is brought on the law books and in the courts, “X” also gets the power to send her husband to prison for forcing upon her their mutual conjugal rights. The after-effect of these two scenarios is conflicted in the sense that the present laws facilitate the spouses to refurbish their strife-stricken life by providing for satisfactory civil remedies whereas in the case of criminalization, the scope for rehabilitation is virtually doomed. The intent of the law in case of marital scenarios has never been the complete breakdown of a household but it has always been to uphold the sanctity of marriage and to make space for repair or renewal of broken bonds, wherever possible. Moreover, India being a country where the current social and legal position of a wife is still swinging in the medley of patriarchy and libertarianism, the instances of abuse of the law will exceed the actual reporting of the ground realities of law. As far as the Constitution is concerned, the rights of a wife cannot be said to be hampered. In fact, special provisions exist for a woman in a marital relationship as opposed to women in general.

In a nutshell, therefore, it cannot be denied that the current socio-legal scenario in India is not sufficiently prepared for the penalization of “marital rape” as such because the idea itself is mired with controversial opinions and beliefs. The possibility of abuse of law is although, in no way, a logical deterrent to the enactment of a valid legislation to enforce justice but the real effect of such an enactment will not be as fruitful as it should be. In fact, there exists an all the more surer possibility of it being an absolute failure in the sense that there is no real benefit served by the legislation and it is a mere addition to the various statutes. Therefore, the main idea is that the first necessary pre-requisite for any legal amendment or enactment on this front to be sufficiently yielding is that a significant amount of social reform needs to be administered in the society which is already swinging between orthodoxy and modernism. The deeply embedded social ideals of patriarchy need to be done away with so as to validate the appropriate environment for any legal remedy to actually benefit the poor victim. The legal code is not the sole loophole, but the entire society ranging from the elite judiciary to the common man needs to first embrace the notion of rape in marriage and then stand up against it. Otherwise, legislations may be enacted and humanitarians and feminists may keep on exaggerating the unfairness of the legal loopholes but the immediate result is undoubtedly bound to remain dissatisfactory. Thus, the only roadblock to any real results on socio-legal front is we ourselves as a society and until and unless, a proper reform doesn’t surface, the criminalization would be nothing but an addition to the statute books which will be another glaring example of rampant misuse and widespread misery that will add to the already plagued country wherein the epidemic of legal conundrums is everlasting. After all, Sir Winston Churchill has rightly commented: “If you have ten thousand regulations you destroy all respect for the law.”

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[i] Bodhisattwa Gautam v. Subhra Chakraborty AIR 1996 SC 922

[ii] License to Rape: The Indian Viewpoint, ssrn, available at: https://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.88896, last seen on 07/12/2015.

[iii] S. Rukmini, Marital Rape: The numbers don’t lie, The Hindu (11/11/2014), available at https://www.thehindu.com/data/statistics-on-marital-rape/article6586829.ece, last seen on 23/11/2015.

[iv] Priyanka Rath, Marital Rape and the Indian Legal Scenario, 2 India Law Journal (2007), available at https://indialawjournal.com/volume2/issue_2/article_by_priyanka.html, last seen on 23/11/2015.

[v] Ibid.

[vi] Rape, Wikiquote, available at https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Rape, last seen on 23/11/2015.

[vii] S.A.Adamo, The Injustice of the Marital Rape Exemption: A Survey of Common Law Countries, 4 American University International Law Review 555, 557 (2012), available at https://digitalcommons.wcl.american.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1682&context=auilr, last seen on 24/11/2015.

[viii] Marital Rape In India – Needs Legal Recognition, ssrn, available at: https://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2290027, last seen on 25/11/2015.

[ix] Behind Closed Doors: Marital Rape in India, livemint, available at www.livemint.com/Politics/b6HcnmMqYadNzWAP05FbEO/Behind-closed-doors-Marital-rape-in-India.html, last seen on 03/12/2015.

[x] S. 375, The Indian Penal Code, 1860.

[xi] Ibid.

[xii] S. 376, The Indian Penal Code, 1860.

[xiii] S. 376A, The Indian Penal Code, 1860.

[xiv] S.377, The Indian Penal Code, 1860.

[xv] U. Prasad, Male Rape In India: Breaking the Silence, Huffingtonpost, available at https://www.huffingtonpost.in/urvashi-prasad/male-rape-in-india-breaki_b_7194316.html, last seen on 06/12/2015.

[xvi] Rape Law in India: Problems in Prosecution Due to Loopholes in the Law, ssrn, available at: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2250448 or https://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2250448, last seen on 06/12/2015.

[xvii] Harvinder Kaur v. Harmender Singh, AIR 1984 Del 66.

[xviii] Sushil Kumar Sharma v. Union Of India, JT 2005 (6) SC 266.

[xix] The Silent Tears of Shattered Families  The Ugly Reality of Dowry Law – IPC – 498a, 498a, available at: https://www.498a.org/contents/Publicity/498aReport.pdf, last seen on 06/12/2015.

[xx] Bodhisatwa v. Ms. Subdhra Chakroborty, AIR 1996 SC 922.

[xxi] Ibid.

[xxii] State of Maharashtra and Another v. Madhukar Narayan Mardikar, AIR 1991 SC 207;  See  Vishakha v. State of Rajasthan, AIR 1997 SC 3011.

[xxiii] B. Gupta & M. Gupta, Marital Rape: – Current Legal Framework in India and the Need for Change, 1 Galgotias Journal of Legal Studies 16, 22 (2013), available at https://law.galgotiasuniversity.edu.in/pdf/issue2.pdf , last seen on 03/12/2015.

[xxiv] (1890) ILR 18 Cal 49.

[xxv] Ibid.

[xxvi] S. 338, The Indian Penal Code, 1860.

[xxvii] AIR 1983 AP 356.

[xxviii] Smt. Saroj Rani v. Sudarshan Kumar Chadha, AIR 1984 SC 1562.

[xxix] 42nd Law Commission of India Report, The Indian Penal Code, 277 (1971), available at: https://lawcommissionofindia.nic.in/1-50/report42.pdf, last seen on 07/12/2015.

[xxx] Supra note 7.

[xxxi] Savitri Devi v. Ramesh Chand, 2003 CriLJ 2759.

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