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Guwahati High court did not grant bail to a rape accused just because he is a talented student

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A post claiming that Delhi High Court through a judgment has allowed IIT students to rape whoever they want is being shared widely across social media platforms. The post further claims that the court assured that they would not be jailed for doing so. let’s fact-check the veracity of the claim made in the post.

Claim: Delhi High Court through a judgment has allowed IIT students to rape whoever they want.

Fact: While granting bail to a rape accused, the Guwahati High court (not Delhi High court) remarked that the accused is a talented student pursuing a technical course and could be state’s asset. However, the court also laid emphasis to other factors like completion of the investigation, no possibility of the accused tampering with the evidence if granted bail. Further, it is noteworthy to mention that the court felt there is a clear prima facie case as alleged against the accused. However, multiple news agencies highlighted the judges remarks regarding the academic profile of the accused over other factors, which led to the misinterpretation of the judgement. Hence the claim made in the post is MISLEADING.

The Guwahati High Court recently granted bail to an IIT Guwahati student who is accused of raping a girl student from the same institute earlier on 13 August 2021. ‘However, as the investigation in the case is completed and both the informant/victim girl and the accused are the state’s future assets being talented students pursuing technical courses at the I.I.T., Guwahati, who are young in the age group of 19 to 21 years only and further, they are being hailed from two different states, continuation of detention of the accused in the interest of trial of the case, if charges are framed, may not be necessary. A perusal of the list of witnesses too, cited in the charge-sheet, this Court finds no possibility of the accused tampering with their evidence or influencing them directly or indirectly, if released on bail’, the court opined after hearing from both the sides.

Even though the court granted bail to the accused, it is noteworthy to mention that the court felt there is a clear prima facie case as alleged against the accused. This judgment of the Guwahati High court is being wrongly shared as if the Delhi court delivered the judgment.

While granting bail to the accused, many other factors like completion of the investigation, no possibility of the accused tampering with the evidence, or influencing them directly or indirectly if released on bail were considered by the court. In addition, the court weighed in on another factor that the accused being a talented student pursuing a technical course could be the state’s asset. In fact, the court mentioned both the victim as well as the accused as state’s assets.

However, multiple news agencies (here & here) which reported the judgement highlighted only the judge’s comment of hailing the accused as a state’s asset over other factors. This led to the misinterpretation of the judge’s remarks like in the case of viral social media post, claiming that the court blatantly supported the rape accused taking his academic record into consideration, which is not the case in reality.

To sum it up, Guwahati High court did not grant bail to a rape accused just because he is a talented student.

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