Rape is defined under Section 375 of the IPC (Indian Penal Code, 1860), which states that rape occurs when a male engages in sexual activity with a woman:

  • Against a woman’s wishes,
  • Without her explicit permission or approval,
  • By forcibly obtaining her consent, or by threatening to murder or harm her or someone she cares about,
  • By convincing her that the man has been legally married to her for a long time,
  • By obtaining her permission when she was mentally ill, inebriated, or under the influence of any other drug that may impair her decision-making capacity.
  • If she is under the age of 16, with or without her permission, and 14 years of age if the offence occurs in Manipur.


This clause also states that mere penetration is sufficient to establish sexual intercourse, which is punishable as rape. The Supreme Court clarified the definition of rape in Sakshi v. Union of India, ruling that only sexual intercourse, i.e. penial and vaginal entry, shall be treated as rape within the scope of Section 375 of the IPC.

The court’s reasoning for this ruling was that while there are many different forms of sexual maltreatment or sexual abuse, each of which is terrible and horrifying, not every sexual offence can be classified as rape. As a result, Penetration is required for the crime of Rape to be committed.

The Supreme Court held in Smt. Sudesh Jhaku v. K.C.J. and Ors that while insertion of foreign objects, such as a bottle, into a female’s vagina can cause trauma and long-term mental harm to the victim, such an act does not fall under the definition of rape under Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code 1860.The court believed that insertion of foreign items would be unlawful under Section 354 of the IPC, which states that an attack or use of criminal force on a lady to insult her modesty is punishable by up to two years in jail.


Section 376A of the Criminal Code punishes victims who die while in a persistent vegetative state. Such conditions carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in jail, with the possibility of life imprisonment.

During the division process, Section 376B allows the husband to have sex with his wife. The penalty will not be less than two years in jail, with a maximum sentence of seven years in prison and a fine.

Section 376C outlines the penalties for sex by individuals in positions of power, which include a minimum of six years in jail and a fine of up to ten years.

376D stipulates that if there has been any rape, the punishment will be at least 20 years in prison, with the possibility of life imprisonment.

376E IPC refers to the sentence of detention for life or execution for persistent offenders.

The name of the assault victim cannot be published, according to Section 228A of the Indian Penal Code, and anybody who does so will face a sentence of up to two years in prison, a fine, or both.

Other relevant articles of the Code of Criminal Procedure express the provisions for rape victim clinical examination and mandatory camera trial for all rape victims, among other things.


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