And all of a sudden I felt really tired. Like the world has drained me for
everything that I had" clearly describes the unheard sufferings of a person who
had been a victim of rape. India being the largest democracy in the world also
stands third in terms of rape incidents after United States of America and
Brazil. In the year 2018, about 94000 rapes were filed in India according to the
National Crime Bureau' annual report. The report clearly means that every
fifteen minute a rape case has been committed in India and still many cases in
India remain unheard and unregistered.
Meaning of Rape
Rape if in simplest of term explained is a type of sexual assault involving
sexual intercourse or other forms of sexual penetration carried out against a
person without their consent�. Rape can occur by coercion, abuse or when the
person is incapable of giving a valid consent on grounds of intoxication,
disability and many more.
Rape is a heinous crime that has been stated offensive and punishable under the
Indian Penal code of 1860. The Indian Penal Code along with Code of Criminal
Procedure, Indian Evidence Act etc. have stated down various rights that are
available for the rape survivors of the country.
There are six most important rights which are as follows:
Six most important rights of the rape survivors:
- Right to zero FIR
Right to zero FIR means that FIR can be filed in any police station of India
irrespective of the jurisdiction and later that same FIR can be transferred
to the concerned police station. This concept of Right to Zero FIR was
introduced after the Nirbhaya Rape Case of Delhi by the committee of Justice
For e.g. if a person is raped in Mumbai and he /she lives in Bhopal. The FIR
can be registered in any of the places and would later be transferred to the
concerned jurisdiction. The Ministry of Home Affairs had also introduced
Advisory Circular dated 10-05-2013 of Home Affairs for Zero FIR.
The concept of Zero FIR has been recognised in many cases such as in the
case of Kirti Vashisht vs the State of Ors, the High court of Delhi accepted
the concept of Zero FIR and directed that the FIR should be registered
without any delay and in any police station.
Another case of Lalita Kumari vs the State of Uttar Pradesh, the Supreme
court clearly stated that the FIR can be registered in any police station
under section 154 of Criminal Procedure Code of 1973 and if any police
officer fails to do so shall be punished for the same for a rigorous
punishment for 6 months or a fine or both under Section 166A of the Indian
Penal code of 1860.
- Free medical treatment in any private hospital
According to Section 357C of Code of Criminal Procedure, no hospital whether
government or private can charge a rape survivor for its treatment. A person
who has been a victim of rape has the right to get free medical treatment in
any hospital whether government or private in any part of the country. Any
hospital or medical institution demanding fee for such medical treatment
would face liability for carrying out such offence.
- No two-finger test during medical examination
Section 164A of the Code of Criminal Procedure clearly demonstrates the
methods and the provisions that have to be used while making such reports.
Further no doctor possess the right to do a two finger test of a rape
In the case of Lillu alias Rajesh and another vs the State of Harayana, the
Supreme Court itself was against the two finger test and identified the test
as humiliating, and which attacks the mental integrity and dignity of a
The only job in such cases for a doctor is to check whether the victim was
actually raped or not, if there is any injury or not or other things related
to the case. In cases of rape only a female doctor is entitled to carry out
such examination. In case of a male doctor, he has to take a written consent
from the court as well as the victim.
The medical examination report shall have the following items:
- Name and address
- Substance used for DNA testing
- Mental condition
- Other things related.
Harassment free and time bound investment
The fourth right available to a rape victim applies harassment free and time
bound investment. The following are the provisions of such right -:
- Only a women police officer would or any other women officer has the right to record the statement of the victim along with the person approved by the victim itself.
- Statement would be recorded in front of the magistrate who is a lady under the Section 164 (5-A) of the Code of Criminal Procedure in her chamber. The purpose for doing this is to check and match the statement given in the police.
- In case the rape survivor is mentally ill or unstable, then any counsellor or any other Social Interpreter should be present at the moment.
- 'Right to trial with dignity, speed and protection
Section 26(A) of the code of Criminal Procedure claims that trial would be done
by the lady judge. Further, nobody has the right to asks questions to the victim
that in any way humiliates her character.
Section 53 of the Indian Evidence Act states that questions regarding sex
history of a rape victim are irrelevant and unnecessary.
Section 327(2)of the Code of Criminal Procedure claims that the proceedings of
such cases are to be held in the presence of camera and the person who wants to
appear in such cases have to take permission from the court as well as the
Section 327(3) prohibits the court proceedings of such cases to be published.
Section 173(1)a states that a total of two months time is given to the police
for speedy trial.
Last but not the least, Section 309(1) states that sufficient courts to be set
up for such cases.
- Right to compensation
Right to compensation is the sixth right of the rape victims. The following are
the provisions of this right:
- Section 357(a) of Code of Criminal Procedure states about the victim's right to compensation.
- In the case of Nipun Saxena vs the Union of India, the Supreme Court made specific guidelines for the compensation rules that needs to be followed.
- Then the National Legal Service Authority made the rules for the compensation of the victim.
- It is stated by the Calcutta High Court in the case of Serina Mondal Alias Piyada vs. The State of West Bengal and Ors compensation provided under Section 357A is provided to protect the fundamental right of a person. Also, in the case of Manohar Singh vs State of Rajasthan and Ors Supreme Court said that compensation can be given even if crime goes unpunished for want of adequate evidence.
Rape is a heinous crime as well as a curse to society that needs to be stopped
as soon as possible. But with the growing era and the growing speed of
technology, where the world is busy in a rat race, the crime rate has almost
increased including the rape cases as well. A rape is indeed a traumatizing
incident not only for the person who suffered through it but also for the closer
ones to that person. Rape engulfs a person internally.
Rape is a mental illness and no revenge can actually cure the pain and the
torture of a person who went through it but ino order to make the country safe
and reduce the number of such crimes, the government has laid down certain rules
and regulations that prevents such crimes. Apart from that the government also
laid down many rights for the rape survivors as well. There are many
organisations, profit or non profit working actively against such heinous
offences. We as a human needs to realise the intensity of such heinous crimes
and should work responsibly and actively at our own levels.
People needs to be made aware of their rights and also people needs to be made
aware of such offences. Parents need to teach their children the seriousness of
such cases, be more prone to moral values and educational institutions must
carry out awareness programs making the students aware, sex education must be
made necessary and many others. It is important to understand the laws made by
the concerned authorities but as well we need to realise that a rape can destroy
someone else's life.
With the growing rate of technology and education, we are moving towards a more
literate society but such crimes serves as a dark spots to a country and somehow
also predicts the dark future of the country as well. Hence, it's our
responsibility to make the future of the country much safer as well as work
together for the need of the hour!