AIDWA STATEMENT ON KARNATAKA HIGH COURT RAPE CASE BAIL ORDER
The All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) is deeply concerned about the advance bail given by the High Court in Karnataka in a rape caseafter the Session had rejected it.Thismeans that the accused was not even interrogated in police custody before being released in the extremely serious crime of rape.
The High Court erroneously held that no prima facie case was made out and made derogatory statements about the woman’s behavior prejudging her case.The court refused to believe that the complainant had been subjected to rape on a false promise of marriage. It shockingly stated that the woman’s failure to report the case the night of the rape as she was tired and fell asleep was “unbecoming of an Indian woman” and “that is not the way our women react when they are ravished” This patriarchal and denigrating statement showed a lack of understanding about the reasons why women cant and don’t report rape and sexual assault immediately after the event.Infact our legal precedents recognise the inability of a woman in an Indian setting to do so. However, after wrongly harping on the fact the woman had allowed the accused to accompany her when he was inebriated, the court allowed the bail. A woman was thus once again seen as the person who was responsible forfacilitating rape.
This is reminiscent of the Mathura rape case and other cases which were critiqued for victimizing the victim. Ironically,the Covid pandemic was also used as a justification to grant bail even though in many deserving cases getting bail is an uphill task.
AIDWA demands that the State of Karnataka should challenge the Judgement.It also demands that Judges be sensitized and made aware of what constitutes patriarchal thinking and how Indian women experience violence.