A Delhi court has sentenced a man to seven years in jail for raping a middle-aged widow by impersonating as a bachelor and marrying her, terming his act as "most deplorable".
Additional sessions judge Nivedita Anil Sharma held Jahangirpuri resident Raj Kumar guilty of rape, cheating and forgery, saying a substantive and stern sentence is required to be imposed upon him so that it serves as an example for others who might also venture on the same forbidden path.
The court imposed a fine of Rs. 1 lakh on Kumar, a former Delhi Jal Board employee, and the amount should be given to the victim as compensation.
It directed the state to pay the woman an appropriate sum as compensation under the Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme.
The case was registered against Kumar on the complaint of the woman, a widow and mother of three married children, alleging that he had married her July 22, 2008 at Arya Samaj Mandir, Yamuna Bazar, after posing as a bachelor though he was already married.
She had told the police that after death of her husband, she came in contact with Kumar, father of two children, who showed sympathy towards her and asked her to marry him.
At the time of marriage, he had furnished false affidavit showing himself to be a bachelor, she had said, adding that after the marriage they developed physical relations and her consent was obtained under the impression that she was his legally wedded wife.
She had said when she came to know that he was already married and cheated her, Kumar threatened her with dire consequences if she complained to the police.
To prove the case, the prosecution has produced Kumar and the victim's photographs which were taken at the time of their marriage in Arya Samaj Mandir, marriage certificate, temple's record as well the priest who had performed the rituals.
During the trial, Kumar claimed innocence saying he was falsely implicated and he neither married the woman nor had any relation with her. He said the woman was blackmailing her and trying to extort money from him.
The court, however, turned down his submission saying Kumar had projected himself to be unmarried, executed forged documents to show that he was a bachelor, cheated a widow into marriage with him and had physical relations with her by obtaining her consent on misconception of facts.
"The act of the convict (Kumar) is most deplorable, both legally and morally. It is time for realisation that certain category of sexually depraved behaviour is totally unacceptable in the Indian socio-legal system which seeks to protect the chastity, the first virtue of a woman, and such behaviour can prove to be costly as has happened in this case.
"The victim is a middle aged widow who reposed trust in the convict and on so called marriage, surrendered before him into a physical relationship. The convict then shattered her faith and trust in him since he was already married," the court said.