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Whether women can snub Modesty of women

Madhya Pradesh High Court
Girdhar Gopal vs State on 18 December, 1952

Bench: Dixit
ORDER Dixit, J.


  • In this box a postulant Girdhar Gopal has been convicted by a City Magistrate, Lashker for offences underneath Sections 342 and 354, Penal Code and cursed to 6 months and one year severe seizure respectively for any of a offences. The sentences were destined to run concurrently. The Sessions Judge of Gwalior deserted an interest elite by a indicted opposite a philosophy and sentences. The applicant has now come adult in rider to this Court.

  • Before me, Mr. Bhagwandas Gupta schooled Counsel for a applicant did not plea a self-assurance and judgment of a applicant underneath Section 342, Penal Code, His row was that Section 354, Penal Code annoyed opposite a supplies of Articles 14 and 15 of a Constitution of India and that therefore, Section 354 being void, a self-assurance of a applicant underneath that territory was illegal. The justification of Mr. Gupta is that as a Penal Code does not make a act of attack or use of rapist force to any masculine with vigilant “to snub his modesty” an offence, Section 354, Penal Code contravenes Article 14 of a Constitution and that in enacting Section 354, Penal Code, a legislature has discriminated in foster of women usually on a belligerent of sex and that therefore, Section 354 offends opposite Article 15(1). In my perspective this justification is invalid and contingency be rejected. The corruption underneath Section 354 is committed usually when a chairman assaults or uses a rapist force to a woman, intending to snub or meaningful it to be expected that he will thereby snub her modesty. It is not a act of outraging a tact that is done an corruption underneath this section. In sequence to consecrate an corruption underneath Section 354, Penal Code there contingency be an attack or use a rapist force to any lady with a goal or believe that a woman’s tact will be outraged. The corruption underneath Section 354, Penal Code can be committed by any masculine or a lady with a required vigilant or knowledge. For, a lady can attack or use rapist force to any other lady as equally and effectively as any man; and a goal or believe that a tact of a lady assaulted or opposite whom rapist force has been used will be outraged, is not of a kind that a lady on comment of fundamental differences from masculine is unqualified of having. The pronoun “he” used in a countenance “that he will thereby snub her modesty” contingency therefore be taken underneath Section 8, Penal Code as importing a masculine or a female. It is so transparent that : underneath Section 354, Penal Code a masculine as good as a lady can be reason guilty of a corruption of assaulting or regulating rapist force to any lady with a goal or believe that a woman’s tact will be outraged, and be punished for a offence. Section 354, therefore, operates equally on all persons either males or females and it can't be confirmed that as women are free from any punishment underneath this section, it offends opposite a supplies of Article 14 of a Constitution.

  • It is loyal that a act of attack or use of rapist force to any masculine with a goal or believe of “outraging his modesty” is not done an corruption underneath a Penal Code. Learned Counsel for a applicant was, however, incompetent to contend what according to him was a definition of a countenance “outraging a tact of a man” or either a countenance meant “offending a boldness of man” or dishonouring him. It would however, seem from Section 353 that an attack or use of rapist force to any masculine by a lady intending thereby to stigma him differently than on grave irritation is punishable. Be that as it might a conflict of a schooled Counsel for a applicant that a Penal Code gives no insurance to masculine opposite attack or rapist force with vigilant to “outrage his modesty” is unequivocally an conflict as to a process of law in not formulating a sold offence. It is not an conflict as to a transgression of Article 14 of a Constitution. This Article provides that a State shall not repudiate to any chairman equivalence before a law or a equal insurance of laws within a territories of India. Article 14 has been construed by a Supreme Court in several cases See Raning Rawat v. State of Saurashtra ; Charanjitlal v. Union of India and by this Court also in Miss Sumitra Devi v. State of Madhya Bharat 1952 Madh B LR 385 (C) and in outcome it means that each law that a State creates shall work comparison on all persons, and skill underneath a same conditions and circumstances. It does not meant that all persons, skill or ‘ function contingency be treated comparison by a State. As forked out by His Lordship Das J. in : While Article 14 forbids category legislation it does not dissuade reasonable sequence for a functions of legislation. In order, however, to pass a exam of slight classification, dual conditions contingency be fulfilled, namely, (1) that a sequence contingency be founded on an lucid differentia that distinguishes persons or things that are grouped together from others left out of a organisation and (2) that that differentia contingency have a receptive propinquity to a vigilant sought to be achieved by a Act. What is required is that there contingency be a sequence between a basement of sequence and a vigilant of a Act.

  • From these observations it is transparent that a reasonable sequence of groups for functions of legislation is slight and what is taboo is taste between persons who are enclosed in a organisation to that a law applies. If, therefore, a Legislature has in a believe suspicion it fit to provide group differently from women in courtesy to tact and to make an attack or use of rapist force with vigilant to snub a tact punishable underneath Section 354 when committed usually with honour to women, a supplies contained in Section 354, Penal Code can't be cursed as unfriendly to Article 14 of a Constitution.

  • The row of a schooled Counsel for a applicant that Section 354 violates a supplies of Article 15(1) of a Constitution is equally untenable. This Article says that a State shall not distinguish on drift usually of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them. The word “only” is critical and deserves to be noted. It emphasises a fact that a taste that is prohibited; underneath Article 15(1) is a taste formed on a belligerent of sex, or race, etc. alone. If a taste is formed not merely on any of a drift settled in Article 15(1) though also on considerations of propriety, open morals, decency, culture and rectitude, a legislation containing such taste would not be strike by a supplies of Article 15(1). It can't be denied that an attack or rapist force to a lady with vigilant to snub her tact is done punishable underneath Section 354 not merely since women are women, though since of a factors enumerated above. Our nation is not rare in creation a acts described in Section 354 punishable as an offence. Such acts consecrate a penal corruption in all other courteous countries. After all civilisation depends on morality. In any nation claiming or determined to be a courteous nation probity and all a incidents of probity are as essential as probity to a citizen and personal liberty. No courteous nation whose movement is destined towards securing “the biggest good of a biggest number” can concede assaults or rapist force to women with vigilant to snub their tact to go unpunished and assent a position of women to be injuriously influenced by franchised libertines. In my opinion, a row modernized on interest of a applicant that Section 354 offends Article 15(1) contingency be rejected.

  • As to a contribution of a case, we see no reason to differ from these point conclusions arrived during by a Courts below. On a justification on record it is conclusively determined that on a afternoon of 10.2.1951 during about -4-30 p.m., a applicant who is a Pujari of a Mandir held reason of a immature lady named Saroj of about 9 years of age, took her to his residence on a stratagem of giving “Parshad” to her and afterwards when she was inside he sealed a doorway of a room, done her distortion on a bed, put a covering on her and afterwards sat on her for some time. Later on a applicant became exposed and asked Saroj, to mislay all her clothes. When a lady shouted and called her brother, who happened to come nearby a residence in hunt of Saroj, a applicant forcibly sealed her mouth. Saroj was afterwards discovered by a neighbours who forcibly non-stop a doorway and entered a room. On her lapse home, Saroj afterwards complained to her mother. Mr. Bhagwandas Gupta urged that as Saroj was a small lady of 9 years of age, she could not have grown a clarity of tact of a lady as contemplated by Section 354, Penal Code and serve as her mom was not examined, to support her matter that she complained to her mother, it was puzzled either a applicant had committed any corruption during all underneath Section 354, Penal Code. Learned Counsel relied on Soko v. Emperor AIR 1933 Cal 142 (D). In that box Jack J., felt some doubt as to either a act of a masculine putting a finger into a private tools of a lady of 5 and half years of age, constituted an corruption underneath Section 354, Penal Code. The schooled Judge was prone to cruise that when a lady had no perplexity in revelation her mom accurately what had happened and carrying courtesy to her age, it could not be pronounced that she Had grown a clarity of modesty, Ghose J., who was a other member of a Bench that motionless that box did not determine with a perspective taken by his schooled hermit that a box did not tumble underneath Section 354, Penal Code. In a Calcutta case, a indicted was eventually convicted underneath Section 323, Penal Code and a judgment of 6 months severe seizure that had been awarded to him by a hearing Magistrate underneath Section 354, Penal Code was maintained. Having courtesy to a business that a judgment was maintained, Bose J., did not wish to differ with a end arrived during by Jack J. With all honour to Jack J., we am incompetent to find myself in agreement with his reasoning. It is nonessential to cruise here either a small lady of 5 years of age can be pronounced to have grown a clarity of tact contemplated by Section 354, Penal Code. So distant as a benefaction box is concerned, it is transparent that when a applicant asked Saroj to mislay her clothes, she refused to do so and shouted. It cannot, therefore, be pronounced that she had not grown any clarity of modesty. To my mind, a act of a applicant in restrictive Saroj in a room, in creation her distortion on a bed and afterwards sitting on her and apropos exposed is clearly one amounting to use of rapist force with a goal or believe that a girl’s tact will be outraged. The applicant has been righteously convicted underneath Sections 354 and 342, Penal Code. The correspondence of a sentences awarded to him is abundantly done out.

  • In a outcome this rider petition is dismissed.
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