"NO MEANS NO- The simplest of sentences have become the most difficult for some men to understand," Himachal Pradesh HC said.
High Court of Himachal Pradesh denied bail to Suresh Kumar, a rape accused, aged 26 years. He raped a minor girl aged 17 years, who was his friend on 17th Dec 2020. Suresh offered the victim to drop her at her home but he took the vehicle to an isolated place started touching and rubbing her, despite the objections made by the victim, he didn't stop and frightened her with the use of force. He asked her whether she marry him or not, to which the victim replied "No". Despite the victim's saying 'No' he continued and had sexual intercourse with her. After raping her, the accused went to Solan and the victim took a bus to reach home. Later she told her mother about the incident. Based on these allegations an FIR registered against him under sec. 376 of IPC and sec. 4 of POCSO Act.
The accused was seeking bail on the ground that he has no criminal history. The accused's counsel stated that she was a friend of the accused and their friendship was cordial resulting in coition. There was active consent of the victim without any coercion and the voluntary participation of the victim makes the accused eligible for bail.
Court reasoned that if there was consent present at the time of sexual intercourse then why the victim narrated the incident to her mother when she would have kept it discreet. Her willingly doing that prima facie points towards the genuineness of the incident.
Later, the court pointed out that the absence of injuries doesn't state that there was consent given. As accused through coercion compelled the victim to cooperate with him.
"Neither the absence of resistance nor the unwilling submission implies consent," HC said.
HC emphasized the importance of sex education "When the curriculum does not include the proper sex education, the children raised by such societies fail the women time and again".
HC stated that the word 'No' doesn't imply that the girl is shy, it simply means to stop or to end and it doesn't need to be explained to anyone.
"The word NO doesn't need any further explanation or justification. It ends there, and the man has to stop. Be that as it may, the victim, in this case, said no to the accused when he started touching her, but he continued," HC added.
The bail petition was dismissed.