The Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde on Monday asked a 23-year-old man, who has been accused of raping a minor girl, whether he will marry the victim.
A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde and comprising Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian asked advocate Anand Dilip Langde, representing the petitioner, "Will you marry her?"
To this, Langde replied that he would need to take instructions from his client and asked for a pass over, but the court was not inclined to it.
The Supreme Court was hearing the bail request of Mohit Subhash Chavan, a technician with the Maharashtra State Electric Production Company, reported NDTV. He was accused of raping a schoolgirl and faces charges under the severe POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act.
During the course of the arguments, Langde submitted before the bench that his client is a government servant, and he will face suspension due to his arrest in the matter.
The Chief Justice replied: "You should have thought before seducing and raping the young girl."
He added that being a government servant, the petitioner should have thought about the consequences. However, the Chief Justice stressed that the court is not forcing the petitioner to marry the girl. "We are not forcing you to marry, otherwise you will say we are forcing you to marry," the bench observed.
After a brief hearing in the matter, the bench declined to entertain the petitioner's plea seeking bail and gave him the liberty to seek regular bail. The top court also granted protection from arrest to the petitioner for four weeks, DNA reported.