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Why Law will Protect Kerala Woman Who Chopped Off 'Rapist' Godman's Penis

Utkarsh Anand | CNN-News18

Updated: May 20, 2017, 4:02 PM IST
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Why Law will Protect Kerala Woman Who Chopped Off 'Rapist' Godman's Penis
Representative Image (Image: Getty Images)

New Delhi: Police in Kerala have not charged a 23-year-old law student who chopped off the penis of her alleged rapist, a self-styled 53-year-old godman, and rightly so.

Not just the conscience, but the law of the land also protects victims of such abhorrent crimes. After all, law is about logic.

ALSO READ | Raped for 8 Years, Kerala Law Student Chops Off Godman's Penis; CM Backs Her

Section 100 in the Indian Penal Code protects victims when the attack is on their life, and what’s a life without dignity? To protect her dignity, a woman can even kill her assailant and the law shall protect her.

Section 100 in the IPC enumerates situations when a person gets the protection after exercising his or her right of self-defence.

To avert an assault with the intention of committing rape, the legal provision says, the right of private defence of the body extends “to the voluntary causing of death or of any other harm to the assailant”.

Therefore, the IPC comes to the aid of all women in situations where the offenders attempt to, or, commit sexual assaults. An imminent fear of grave harm is a reason sufficient enough in law to act in self-defence. This immunity is also available when there is an apprehension of death or kidnapping.

In court, rape survivors have to only corroborate a lack of consent, thereby necessitating them to act in self-defence.

According to a police complaint filed by the woman, the accused, identified as Swamy Gangeshananda, a member of the Kollam-based Panmana Ashram, had been raping her at her home for the last eight years. The woman said he first raped her when she was 16 years old.

ALSO READ | When Women Meted Out Punishment to Their 'Rapists': Six Cases from India

The accused was rushed to the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College where an emergency surgery was performed. Hospital officials, however, said that 90% of his penis was cut off and was not in a position to be re-attached.

He has been booked under Section 376 (Rape) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act (POCSO). He reportedly told the police that he had chopped off his penis himself.

First Published: May 20, 2017, 1:58 PM IST
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