Fast-track court judge highlights rising incidents of trapping women after false promise of marriage
A special fast-track court here, which tries cases involving atrocities against women and children, sentenced a man to 20 years of rigorous imprisonment (RI) on Monday for raping a woman on false pretext of marriage seven years ago.
Thiruvananthapuram Fast Track Special Judge R. Jayakrishnan pronounced the judgement after finding Sareesh Madhu (34) of Valiyazheekkal guilty in the crime that occurred between October 2013 and March 2014.
He was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment and a fine of ₹25,000 under Section 376(1) (punishment for rape) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and five years’ imprisonment and a fine of ₹5,000 under Section 420 (cheating) of the IPC. A default of the fines would lead to additional imprisonment of six months and three months respectively.
While the sentences will run concurrently, the convict is entitled to a set-off for the period from April 20, 2014 (the date of arrest) and June 16, 2014 (when he had been released on bail). The fine amount will be given to the survivor as compensation.
According to the prosecution led by special public prosecutor Vijay Mohan R.S., Sareesh had come into contact with the survivor after the latter had inadvertently sent him a message on his mobile phone. Despite realising her mistake, the convict contacted her repeatedly in a conscious attempt to gain her confidence. During their conversations, he introduced himself as Rahul. Soon, the survivor, who fell in love with Sareesh, began to visit him at his firm in Sreekaryam where he promised to marry her. Relenting to his demand, the survivor entered into a physical relationship with the convict. She was taken to two lodges under the Medical College police limits where she was subjected to rape.
While the survivor demanded that he fulfilled his promise of marrying her, Sareesh took his parents to her house under the pretext of proposing marriage. During the occasion, his family demanded a dowry of 101 sovereigns of gold. Notwithstanding their financial constraints, the survivor’s family offered to sell their properties and provide 71 sovereigns. However, the convict remained firm on his demand in an apparent attempt to wriggle out of the relation.
In the verdict, the judge highlighted the rising tendency of attempts to trap women by promising marriage in order to satisfy their lust and later escape on the grounds of consent. The case was investigated by the Medical College police. The defendant was represented by advocate M. Jayaprasad.