The Kerala High Court recently quashed a case falling under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act ( POCSO Act) quoting the agreement and marriage of the accused and the respondent. The order was issued by Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas in a petition moved by the 27-year-old accused. The accused was held in charge of Sections 3, 4, 5I, and 6 of the POCSO Act and Section 376(2)(n) of the Indian Penal Code. Moreover, the High Court was acknowledged that the matter had been amicably sorted out and the respondent did not have any wrong against the petitioner. With respect to that, an affidavit was filed by the respondent.
It was submitted further that the petitioner who is the accused and the defacto respondent were in love and also gotten married legally for which a marriage certificate was also produced to support the demand.
Placing view on a number of case-laws such as Gian Singh v. State of Punjab, Narinder Singh and Others v. State of Punjab and Another and Yogendra Yadav and Others v. State of Jharkhand on the view of recognizing settlements entered into by parties, the Court proceeded to quash the case against the petitioner. In doing so, it also noted that the petitioner does not have any criminal antecedents.
The bench also stated that The POCSO law was a knee-jerk reaction to the 2012 Delhi gang rape incident. As far as statutory rape (with consent) was concerned, greater thought should have gone into it rather than making it punishable with a minimum of ten years, He added.