A 23-year-old man who kidnapped and raped a 13-year-old and claimed to have married her a day later has been sentenced to seven years in jail by a Delhi court which said her "consent" was of no help as she was below 16 years of age.
The court convicted Firoz, who had allegedly married the girl after raping her in Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh in 2010, saying he had failed to prove the solemnisation of their marriage. It said that even if it was presumed that they had married, no marital relation existed between them on the day she was raped.
Additional sessions judge Umed Singh Grewal also imposed a fine of Rs 8,000 on him and rejected his contention that the girl had married him with her own consent.
"... There was sexual intercourse between the parties but with consent. The girl has already been held below 13 years. Consent by a girl below 16 years is of no help to the accused (Firoz)," the court said.
It also noted that although Firoz has argued that he had married the girl on September 18, 2010, the minor was raped by him a day before their alleged marriage.
"Even if it is presumed that marriage has been proved, it is again of no use to the accused because that affidavit is dated September 18, 2010, whereas the prosecutrix (girl) deposed in examination-in-chief that she was raped on September 17, 2010," it said.
Meanwhile, the court acquitted a woman, Munni, who was also a co-accused in the case for allegedly threatening the minor girl and taking her to Firoz, saying the police have failed to substantiate the allegations levelled against her.