The Indian Supreme Court has exonerated a man from charges of raping his ex-girlfriend, some 21 years after he was convicted of the offence.

In making the ruling, the Bench found that the rape was actually consensual sexual liaison that had happened between the man and the woman in 1995 as they were "deeply in love" with each other.

During the relationship, the couple had exchanged love letters and taken photographs together. The woman had even at one point, been in a live-in relationship with the man, prior to the alleged assault.

The Bench also found that the complainant was 25-years-old when she lodged the report in 1999, and not 20 as she had claimed, making her a major at the time of the alleged incident, four years earlier.

The relationship, however, could not end in marriage as they belonged to different religions.

Enraged over letting the love of her life go, the woman lodged a police report alleging rape, only a week before the man was to get married to another woman in 1999.

The man was booked for rape and illegal confinement. Despite presenting evidence in the form of the love letters and photographs with the complainant, a trial court sentenced him to seven years in jail, in 1999. The Jharkand High Court later upheld the sentence.

In absolving the man of blame, the Supreme Court Bench ruled that the accused did not make any false promise or intentional misrepresentation of marriage that led to the physical relationship between the two parties, and that the complainant was well aware of the obstacles they faced in the relationship due to the difference in religion.

Well, glad to know that an innocent individual has been cleared of unnecessary blame.

It has taken seven years of his life (in jail), and more than two decades (to clear his name), but as they say, better late than never!

Source: Deccan Herald,
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