False allegation of committing rape causes humiliation and damage to the accused

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In the case of Rohit Bansal v. State, the Delhi High Court has taken yet another forward step to protect the rights of people who are falsely implicated in rape cases. In the present case, it was alleged that the prosecutrix had been raped by seven persons who consequently threatened to kill her brother and display the photograph of the rape in front of her house. However, the appellant contended that the prosecutrix had an affair with the appellant for a long time and when the latter refused to marry her, she falsely implicated him to extract revenge. The division bench of G.S. Sistani and S.D. Sehgal observed that the testimony of the prosecutrix did not inspire confidence and could not form the sole basis of conviction. She confronted her statements recorded under Sec.161 and 164 of CrPc and her contradictions and exaggerations cast doubt on her status as a sterling witness. Moreover the authenticity of the negative of the photograph was not proved. The Court said that such false allegation of rape caused humiliation and damage to the person implicated and all doubts of false implication must be dealt with effectively. The prosectrix’s evidence was not corroborated by medical evidence.

The judgment is a beacon of hope for innocent individuals who have been the target of rape law misused by unscrupulous women. Positively, it will deter women from taking undue advantage of the legal machinery and negatively, it undervalues, to a certain extent, the importance of oral testimony. But the court has noted that it is a settled principle of law that conviction can be based on the sole testimony of the victim of sexual assault without corroboration of any other evidence, if the testimony inspires confidence and has complete link of truth.

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