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Can Sex With Minor Wife Be Allowed?

Can Sex With Minor Wife Be Allowed?

The Supreme Court yesterday asked the Ministry of Women & Child Development to check for the contradictions and exceptions in the provisions of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and the IPC on the question of sexual abuse of a minor wife.

Acting on a petition filed by an NGO named Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA) in which the NGO has claimed that while any sexual offence against a child below the age of 18 years is an offence, the exemption II under Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code allows sex with a wife not being under 15 years of age.

The Court directed the NGO to send its petition to Women & Child Development Secretary, saying that the Ministry would treat the petition as a representation and examine the legality of the provision raised in it.

According to the Sections 3 & 5 of POCSO Act aggravated penetrative sexual assault on girls up to the age of 18 years as minor and Section 6 lead to punishment not be less than 10 years and even life imprisonment in some cases.

However, exception II in Section 375 reads, "Sexual intercourse or sexual acts by a man with his own wife, the wife not being below 15 years, is not a rape."

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