Marital rape is non-consensual sex committed by a man on his wife by force or threat of using force. It can be said that it is a form of domestic violence. There was a time when marital rape was unrecognized as an offence around the world. But from the second half of the 20th century, many countries have come forward and criminalized it because of increasing violence against women.
However, many countries do not recognize marital rape as an offence. India being one them. According to Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code, sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under fifteen years of age, is not rape. India is a country which is blinded by its age old cultural norms and customs which places every woman in control of her husband.
We still believe in the concept that husbands are deities. So when a deity like creature imposes himself on his wife without her consent, then it cannot be called rape. It’s his right. Marriage gave him a license to violate his own wife.
Sex is a very beautiful thing and it should not be limited to just sexual intercourse without any feelings. What makes sex beautiful is that both the partners willingly give their consent. But in an Indian marriage, consent of wife is unnecessary as long as husband has consented to it. A woman becomes nothing but a property of her husband.
What is more shocking is that some women consider marital rape as their fate. They believe that after marriage it is a wife’s duty to satisfy her husband even though they may not be willing to do it. Marriage in India means a lifelong free ticket to have sex. No education can cure this ignorance.
Recent studies show that between 10 and 14% of married women are raped by their husbands. This means that so many women are humiliated and assaulted within the safe boundaries of their houses. According to Indian Government, “the concept of marital rape can’t be applied in the Indian context, as marriage here is sacred.” The very sanctity of marriage loses its essence when the man refuses to take a “NO” from his wife.
The fight against the government for criminalizing marital rape is still on and we will not stop until we get the desired results. Until then, if he RAPES you, he doesn’t love you.