‘DCW counsellors at police stations must support rape victims’
While acquitting an accused in a rape case, a court here suggested that the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) adequately train its counsellors posted at police stations to provide support to rape victims and not to advise them to lodge false rape cases.
Additional Sessions Judge Arun Grover Baliga gave the advice to the women’s rights body when an alleged rape victim in her deposition before the court said that “she had mentioned the allegations of rape in her complaint [to the police] only on the advice of the NGO counsellor at Sarojini Nagar police station”.
“Before parting with this case, this court finds it necessary to direct that a copy of this judgment be sent to the DCW to bring to its notice the conduct of the counsellor at the police station. This court has no doubt in its mind that the statement made by the prosecutrix on oath that she had made allegations of rape in her complaint only on the advice of the counsellor present at the police station, is true and correct,” the judge said.
Duty of counsellors
“This court, therefore, feels it necessary to request the DCW to properly train its counsellors appointed at the police stations and remind them that their duty is to provide support to the victims of sexual assault, and not to advise them to make false allegations of rape,” the judge added.
Also, the judge further said, “This court has found the prosecutrix to be a very credible witness because she honestly narrated the entire facts in her deposition and did not make any efforts to conceal the fact that it was the attitude of her own grandfather which caused problems in the finalisation of her marriage with the accused. She has also very forthrightly admitted that she was never fraudulently induced by the accused to have sexual relations.” “In the considered opinion of this court, had the counsellor at the police station not given wrong advice to the prosecutrix to make false allegations against the accused only to rope him in a case of rape, the accused would not have had to spend 22 days in judicial custody and perhaps the parties may have amicably settled their disputes,” said the judge.
The allegations against the accused stated that he had sexually assaulted the victim several times on the pretext of marrying her.