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Home » India » Intercourse or sexual act with wife below 18 will be considered rape: Supreme Court

Intercourse or sexual act with wife below 18 will be considered rape: Supreme Court

By Newsd
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How can Parliament create a law declaring intercourse with the minor wife is not rape when the age of consent is 18?

In a significant verdict, the Supreme Court on Wednesday said that intercourse or sexual relation by a man with his wife below the age of 18 years will be seen as rape. The ruling came on a plea challenging the exclusion to the rape law that allows intercourse or sexual relation by a man with his wife, not below 15 years, though the age of consent was 18 years.

The bench led by Justice Madan, B Lokur reserved its order on the plea on September 6, but declared today. The ruling comes as a setback to the government that had justified the exception to Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

The court asked how Parliament could create an exception in law declaring that intercourse by a man with his wife, aged between 15 and 18 years, is not rape, when the age of consent is 18. The apex court simply questioned that when the age of consent was 18 years for “all purposes”, why such an exception was made in IPC.

An exception clause in section 375 of the IPC says that intercourse or sexual act by a man with his wife, not below 15 years, is not rape. But Centre claimed that if this exception under the IPC was removed, it would open the ground of marital rape that does not exist in India.

As per the petitioners, the exception 2 to Section 375 of IPC is “violative of Articles 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution to the extent that it permits intrusive sexual intercourse with a girl child aged between 15 and 18 years, only on the ground that she has been married.”

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