Allahabad High Court recently noted that a rape victim cannot be compelled to undergo the DNA test to find out the paternity of the child. The bench was hearing a revision plea against the June 25 order by the Additional Session Judge which allowed DNA test.
“It is apparent that the learned Additional Sessions Judge has misdirected his energies. The question before the learned Trial Court was not whether the child that was born to the prosecutrix was the child of the opposite party no.2. There was no question for determining the paternity of the child, the question involved in the case was whether rape was committed on the prosecutrix by the opposite party no.2. There was no reason for the prosecutrix to let her child undergo DNA Test,” noted Justice Sangeeta Chandra.
The bench noted that the impugned order dated June 25, 2021 had ignored the provisions of Article 14–21 of the Constitution of India. Justice Chandra further added that there was no reason to allow the victim to undergo a DNA Test as the issue in consideration was whether the offence of rape had been committed and not whether the accused had fathered the child.
“The order dated 25.06.2021 is set aside and the learned Trial Court order dated 25.03.2021 is affirmed subject to the modification that the Trial Court’s observation regarding such application being moved under Section 313 of the Cr.P.C. would be considered on its merits when it is taken up, shall also not be read against the revisionist that victim of rape can be compelled to undergo DNA test after such long time of the alleged incident,” the High Court bench observed.
14 year old victim was allegedly raped seven months ago after which she got pregnant. Subsequently, a case was registered in Kotwali Dehat, District Sultanpur under Section 376, Section 504, Section 506 of Indian Penal Code and Section 3/4 POCSO Act.
As per the victim’s mother, she had tried to get the victim married to the accused but the father of the accused rejected the proposal. The accused was declared juvenile during the trial. Therefore, the matter was transferred from Trial Court to the Juvenile Justice Board, Sultanpur.
The accused moved an application to conduct the DNA test of the victim which was rejected by the Juvenile Justice Board.
“Such an application for examining the victim can only be moved at the stage when defence witnesses were being examined under Section 313 CrPC. Sending the victim child for DNA Test would further delay the trial which under the provisions of statute should be concluded as expeditiously as possible,” said the Juvenile Justice Board.
Thereafter, the accused moved a criminal appeal before the Additional Sessions Judge, Sultanpur which permitted the conduct the DNA test vide impugned order dated June 25, 2021.
Then, the mother of the victim had filed a revision petition before the High Court.