Get Inspired, Be Empowered Forums Sexism & Patriarchy Why is Martial Rape Legal in India? Reply To: Why is Martial Rape Legal in India?

Yash Tiwari
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Whenever we speak about the sexual abuse of women, it is difficult for us to believe what is happening in our homeland. Recently, and all the time we see that rape is being spread in the name of religion and caste. Is there any country on earth where marital rape is not known? A man can be imprisoned for raping a non-related woman or girl having consensual sex, but a husband who sexually abuses his wife has never been punished by law. The situation is changing today but men are still dominating women and even their gang up against females to rule them. Society will only change when males accept the fact that women exist separately and they have ownership rights. Men should never put down their wife’s respect even if they think she is inferior to them. We have the right to choose whom we want to marry.

The irony of this is that marital rape is legal in India. Marital rape is a crime in many countries including the United States. This idea of a woman being the property of her husband persists in India, which has led to laws protecting men rather than women. In India, marital rape is not considered a crime. Women’s rights groups argue that while the government has criminalized all forms of sexual violence outside of marriage, acts such as forced sex and domestic assault are not considered criminal within marriage or in relationships. This double standard makes it possible for men to force their wives to have sex against their will without any legal recourse.

It’s time to change this law and in the meantime, society should be encouraging Indian women not to marry or have physical relations with a man before getting married. Times are changing and if we don’t change, we will be left behind. If you live in India, you need to be aware of the danger your daughter might face as she moves into adulthood. Every year thousands of girls and women suffer unwanted sexual advances that threaten their health and safety. And under Indian law, these same girls and women have no recourse for justice if they are raped by someone they know. The Indian government did what it always does when women are raped — the Central Bureau of Investigation sent a team to make inquiries, but it’s unclear whether anyone will ever be prosecuted for the crime.

The crux of the matter is that a marriage is considered sacred and inviolable in our society. According to the Hindu religion, the consummation of marriage is not essential for its continuance. But today, despite modern sensibilities and The Constitution, the State has chosen to use marriage itself as a tool of repression. Rape in marriage is perfectly legal, which means that an act as intimately violent as rape can never form part of a contract between two people, even if it is consensual.