New Delhi: A youth accused of abducting and raping a 19-year-old girl has been acquitted by a Delhi court on the ground that the couple were in love and married with each other`s consent.
Additional Sessions Judge T R Naval allowed Delhi- resident Lokesh to walk free, saying that the prosecution could not prove its case against him and gave him the benefit of doubt.
According to the prosecution, the family members of the girl had lodged a missing complaint on September 6, 2011 after she did not return home from school.
The family suspected that Lokesh, who lived near their house, might have enticed the girl and taken her away.
On September 17, 2011, Lokesh`s father produced his son and the girl at the police station, following which Lokesh was arrested. Charges of abduction and rape were also invoked against him.
"It is held that the prosecution has failed to prove its case against the accused beyond reasonable suspicion and shadow of doubt that he kidnapped the girl out of keeping of her lawful guardianship of her parents, etc. And that she was kidnapped, abducted or enticed away by the accused in order to compel her to marry him, etc," the court said.
The girl did not support the prosecution`s version in the court, and said she was in love with Lokesh.
She told the court that they had boarded a bus to Uttar Pradesh and went to the house of Lokesh`s relative after getting married.
They also visited Rishikesh and stayed at an ashram, she said, adding that they did not have any physical relation.
During the trial, the accused denied the charges and said he was in love with the girl and had together decided to elope.
He further said they married in a court and thereafter, informed his parents about it.