The decision by the court to decriminalize section 377 of the IPC was a good one but I was just wondering if anything is being done to amend the existing rape law (section 375)? First of all, the law as it stands today assumes that rape victims are always women and secondly, it does not consider marital rape a crime…If women want to accuse their husbands or vice-versa of sexual violence they cannot do so as there is a general marital rape exemption in section 375 of the IPC, 1860…The foundation of this exemption can be traced back to statements made by Sir Matthew Hale, C.J., in 17th century England…Hale wrote:
“The husband cannot be guilty of a rape committed by himself upon his lawful wife, for by their mutual matrimonial consent and contract, the wife hath given herself in kind unto the husband, which she cannot retract.”
Do jurists feel that since marital rape occurs between adults behind closed doors, it is not criminal?
Edited to add:
If IPC section 377 is repealed, then section 375 should be amended to include male rape of both adults and minors…The male rape provision should include rape by both men and women…