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self defenceA woman, accused of causing her husband’s death while stopping him from allegedly raping their daughter, has been acquitted by a Delhi court which said she acted in “self defence” as the man would have “ravished” the child or would have grievously hurt them.

Additional Sessions Judge Sudesh Kumar said that the circumstances in which the accused (woman) was, were amply sufficient to give her the “right of private defence” of the body even to the extent of causing death.

“The prevailing circumstances gave rise to a reasonable apprehension that either the victim would be ravished or grievous hurt would be caused if the right is not exercised.

“It is these circumstances which bring the case of the accused within the limits of self defence as enumerated under the provisions of IPC and for which, the accused is certainly entitled to be acquitted,” the court said.

The court said whether the man was ravishing his minor daughter at the time her mother intervened or whether he “belligerently” attacked them on being confronted, was immaterial as in both the circumstances a reasonable apprehension of imminent danger to their body has arisen.

“I have no hesitation in holding that act of the accused was in the nature of exercise of private defence and had the accused not stopped the deceased(husband), either he would have raped her daughter or would have caused physical harm to her and also the victim who was resisting his advances to defeat his evil acts as he has previously done when he raped his daughter and fractured the leg of the accused when she objected,” the judge said.

The court observed that it is an “unfortunate case which is a result of repeated incestuous assaults on a minor girl by none else but her own father for almost two years prior to the date of incident despite stiff resistance and objections by the victim and other family members.

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