Extramarital relationship of mature already married couple can’t be treated as contingent happenstance | India News – Times of India

CHANDIGARH: The Punjab and Haryana high court has made it clear that when mature, educated man and woman; while being married to different people and also parents to children with wedded partners; decide to enter into an extramarital relationship, it cannot be treated as a contingent happenstance.
HC has passed these orders while discharging an officer of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) who was booked for rape charges by Gurgaon police on complaint of a woman who was having extramarital relationship with the officer.The complainant as well as the accused were in their early fifties and the woman had alleged that she was being raped by the accused in the pretext of marriage.
HC held that even if such a relationship is based on some romantic ideals or irrational assumptions of a fairy tale script or, especially, for companionship, mutuality and reciprocity, such relations between consenting adults cannot but be formed with such awareness of the consequences and reverberating effects.
“Even if the consenting adults, at some point in their relationship, thought about parting with their wedded partners to proceed towards legalizing their extramarital relationship; while one of them decides to not proceed with the idea, it may very well lead to utter disappointment for the other person in the extramarital affair, but it would be sheer far-fetched to term the consensual extramarital relation as anything but that,” Justice Sumeet Goel of the HC has held while discharging the accused from rape charges.
The judge further observed that for a married woman, who has willingly formed consensual extramarital relationship with a man, wherein the said man is married to another woman with children born out of the wedlock, it is seemingly preposterous to expect that the said man would divorce his wife to marry her, while she continues in her marital relationship and family life with children.
“The convoluted expectations placed upon the man and the accusation of having sexual relationship on pretext of marriage are seemingly duplicitous as well as disparaging much less culpable to invite criminal prosecution. In such like cases, the presumption stipulated under Section 114-A of Indian Evidence Act, 1872 cannot come to the aid of the prosecution/complainant,” held the court while allowing the petition filed by the accused against the FIR and the charges framed against him in the rape case.
In this case both the complainant and the accused had met in August 2016 at the Delhi airport and after having extramarital affairs for around five years, the woman filed a complaint against him for rape in 2021. The accused is a senior officer with CRPF and the complaint was working in a private company. Both were married and having grown up children.
Considering the facts and circumstances in the case, the judge observed that it cannot be legally and validly construed that there was any alleged promise to marry on part of the petitioner, which made the complainant vary her stand and communicate her consent to make physical relations with the petitioner.

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