Case Title: Rangaraju @ Vajapeyi vs State of Karnataka
A division bench of Justice B Veerappa and Justice Venkatesh Naik of Karnataka High Court directed state government to install CCTV cameras in mortuaries of all government hospitals after a man caught of having sex with dead body.
The state government was also asked to maintain mortuary hygiene, ensure confidentiality and privacy at mortuaries.
The bench was hearing an appeal against the sessions court’s order for convicting a man for the offence of murder and rape of a woman.
The bench said that the following case would not come under section 377 of Indian Penal Code.
“A careful reading of Sections 375 and 377 of IPC makes it clear that a dead body cannot be called a human or person. Therefore, the provisions of Section 375 or 377 would not be attracted”.
“It cannot be termed as rape punishable under Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code. Utmost it can be considered as sadism, necrophilia and there is no offence made out to punish under Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code”.
The bench urged central government to either amend the provisions of IPC or introduced a separate penal provision to criminalise necrophilia.
“The Central Government is hereby recommended to amend the provisions of the IPC as stated supra in order to protect the dignity of the body of the deceased in order to ensure to protect persons right of life includes right of his dead body as contemplated under Article 21 of the Constitution of India within a period of 6 (six) months from the date of receipt of certified copy of this order”.
However, the man was found guilty of committing murder based on the several evidence and thus, the conviction for the offence of murder was confirmed.