HC grants bail to doctor facing rape allegation, says not a case of forceful sexual assault

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New Delhi, Apr 2 (PTI) The Delhi High Court has granted bail to a doctor of Safdarjung Hospital, accused of raping a woman on the promise of marriage, on the ground that it was 'not a case of forceful sexual assault' and he would not be in a position to terrorise the victim or tamper with evidence.

Justice Subramonium Prasad said there is nothing on record to indicate that the man had promised marriage to the prosecutrix and whether the woman's physical relationship was based on her free consent or not will be decided only in trial.

“The prosecutrix is a make-up artist and is a resident of Delhi. It cannot be said that she is a naive lady. This is not a case of forceful sexual assault..,” the high court said in its March 22 order.

It added that the accused is a doctor working in Safdarjung Hospital and it cannot be said that he would be in a position to terrorise the woman or tamper with evidence.

The court noted that the evidence has been collected and the mobile phone of the man was with the police.

“In view the above, this court finds it just and expedient to grant bail to the petitioner (doctor) in the event of arrest in...registered at Police Station Hauz Khas for offences punishable under Section 376 (punishment for rape) and 328 (Causing hurt by means of poison with and intent to commit an offence) IPC…,” the high court said.

The court granted bail to the doctor on furnishing of a personal bond of Rs 50,000 with a surety by his relative of the like amount.

It directed him to give all his mobile numbers and address to the investigating officer and that he shall report to the concerned police station on every Monday.

“The petitioner shall not tamper with evidence or exert pressure on the prosecutrix. It is made clear and needless to state that the observations made in this order are only for the purpose of grant of bail and not on the merits of the case,” the high court said.

According to the woman, her father had suffered a heart attack in January 2019 and she took her to the Safdarjung hospital where the accused was the duty doctor.

During the course of treatment, he visited the woman’s residence and gave his profile for the purpose of marriage and asked for her profile as well, she said.

The woman alleged that later on he called her to meet him to know each other, and once she was called at his friend’s house where she was given a soft drink after which she lost consciousness and on regaining consciousness, she realised she has been raped.

When she confronted the man, she was threatened that a video had been taken by him and would be made viral, the woman alleged, adding that later on she was called at some hotels and raped again.

An FIR was lodged at Hauz Khas Police Station on January 28, 2021 on the woman’s rape complaint.

Seeking bail the doctor’s counsel submitted that the FIR was registered on the allegation that the petitioner took the woman to his friend’s flat on June 9, 2019 where she was raped.

However, this story has been completely given a go by and now the allegation is that the man promised marriage and established physical relationship with her, he argued, adding that no useful purpose would be served by arresting the doctor.

The court noted that the material on record showed that though initially the woman came up with the case wherein she has alleged that the man gave her a drink laced with sedatives and taking advantage of the fact that she was not conscious he raped her.

“This allegation has been given a go by and the subsequent allegation of the prosecutrix is that sexual relationship was established on the basis of promise to marry. There are contradictions between the initial version and the present version of the prosecutrix.

'This court has perused all the records and does not find any promise of marriage. There is no further material which has to be recovered from the petitioner. The sexual relationship was established on the promise of marriage or not is a matter of trial and has to be established during the trial,” the court said. PTI SKV SA