Indian judge says pre-marital sex 'against religion'

Couples in Mumbai Pre-marital relationships are still frowned upon by society in India

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A judge in the Indian capital, Delhi, has said that pre-marital sex is "immoral" and against the "tenets of every religion".

Judge Virender Bhat made the remarks after ruling that sex between two adults on the promise of marriage did not amount to rape.

Pre-marital sex remains a cultural taboo in India.

Last year, a court in Delhi said live-in relationships were immoral and an "infamous product of Western culture".

Judge Bhat presides over a fast-track court set up in the Indian capital to dispose of cases relating to sexual offences against women.

He made his latest remarks while clearing a man employed with a multinational company of charges of rape.

The 29-year-old had been arrested after a woman working in a different company lodged a complaint of rape against him in 2011.

The woman alleged that the man had sex with her after promising marriage.

"In my opinion, every act of sexual intercourse between two adults on the assurance of promise of marriage does not become rape, if the assurance or promise is not fulfilled later on by the boy," Judge Bhat was quoted as saying by the Press Trust of India.

"When a grown up, educated and office-going woman subjects herself to sexual intercourse with a friend or colleague on the latter's promise that he would marry her, she does so at her own peril. She must be taken to understand the consequences of her act and must know that there is no guarantee that the boy would fulfil his promise.

"He may or may not do so. She must understand that she is engaging in an act which not only is immoral but also against the tenets of every religion. No religion in the world allows pre-marital sex," the judge added.

In 2010, the Supreme Court dismissed a number of cases against a Tamil actress who spoke in support of the right of women to have pre-marital sex. The court also endorsed the right of unmarried couples to live together.

Actress Kushboo was accused of "outraging public decency" and 22 cases were filed against her in 2005.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 247.

    Not only does the Indian Judge have no business imposing dogma on the country, he's wrong.
    Hindusim isn't gainst sex or nudity, if you read the Vedas, Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita etc. And Krisna had a harem.
    Also Jesus says nothing against sex, the Koran says little about dress codes, and that very liberal.
    Any repression of sex has been added later to control people.

  • rate this

    Comment number 232.

    I think India needs to be addressing the serious problem it has with rape rather than concerning itself with consensual premarital sex.The priorities are wrong.

  • rate this

    Comment number 193.

    Its called difference of culture.
    Majority of Indians think that 'pre-marital sex' or 'sex outside marriage' is immoral.There is nothing scientifically wrong with it,just the difference of culture.
    Lets appreciate each other's culture without ridiculing or trying to enforce our opinion onto others.

  • rate this

    Comment number 97.

    Sorry, but this Judge is 100% Correct.

    Glad to see we still got morality ALIVE in the world, and powerful people like this judge will bring change into this society for better.

    God Bless him!

  • rate this

    Comment number 95.

    This is all dreadfully muddled up. A law court is not a place to discuss 'morals' or religion, it is a place to determine if the individuals appearing there have or have not broken the law of the land.

    As for what consenting adults choose to do in private, that's their business. They may apply whatever moral code they choose.


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