Outraging the modesty of a woman

Outraging the modesty of a woman: Provisions and Cases

This article on ‘Outraging the modesty of a woman: Provisions and Cases‘ was written by an intern at Legal Upanishad.


History demonstrates that women were revered as both a personification of a deity and a sign of respect. However, this is not supported by the countless recent and even historical examples of crimes against women. In addition, it demonstrates how common women were mistreated and viewed as inferior to men, with the exception of royal family members, who led lives of luxury, comfort, and dignity and held positions of authority. We frequently believe that as time passes, so does the status of women, but this is not the case.

It’s merely a myth. Instead, during the past few years, crimes against women have significantly grown. Women are simply misunderstood as sex objects, which disrupts the conversation. Several laws have been created to shield women from such heinous crimes and offenses.[1]


A female human being of any age is referred to as a “woman” in this context. The Indian Penal Code does not define the term “modesty.” But in the common language, the word “outrage” refers to an act of savagery or brutality, or, as we would say, to something that causes a great deal of outrage or indignation. So, in essence, outraging modesty refers to nasty conduct that usually makes a woman angry. There are certain offenses that are seen as outraging the modesty of a woman, such as gestures, remarks, etc. that invade a woman’s privacy. Modesty serves as a safeguard for virtue in addition to being an ornament.

In India, outraging the modesty of a woman is seen as a crime, and the Indian Penal Code has measures that address it.[2]

Crime against females

In India, women are more likely to commit significant crimes. Another important component in these crimes is the dominance that men have over women. Physically and psychologically, women are typically viewed less favorably. It is extremely heartbreaking to witness how some societies’ women are abused physically, sexually, and emotionally by both their husbands and strangers males. Additionally, in certain communities, the women are expected to follow the men’s orders and are not even given the option of choosing whether to keep their pregnancy or have it terminated.

Some of the most significant crimes against women in India include the following:

  1. Sexual crimes
  2. Molestation
  3. Rape
  4. Both at home and at work, there is harassment
  5. Shady trafficking
  6. The mistreatment of women
  7. Physical harm [3]

In accordance with Section 354

 Anyone who assaults a woman or uses criminal force against her with the intent to offend or knowing that doing so will likely offend her modesty shall be punished by imprisonment of either description for a term that shall not be less than one year but which may extend to five years, by fine, or by both.

Because of this, the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 2013 changed it to an offense that is not subject to bail.


Section 6 of the Provision of Punishment 2013 Act 13 states that the punishment and fine previously given under the aforementioned have been replaced with either two years of imprisonment of either sort, a fine, or both.

Section 354 requires the accused to have a fundamental understanding that his actions may jeopardise the modesty of a woman. The action taken on his behalf must be the result of unlawful force or an assault committed by him.

Outrage is used as a word Since what offends the modesty of a woman is not explicitly defined, what falls within its purview depends on the circumstances of a given situation. Modesty is a sensitive term that has been subject to various understandings and interpretations. [4]

Outraging the modesty of a woman
Outraging the modesty of a woman

Case laws

Major Singh v. State of Punjab (AIR 1967 SC 63):

In this case, the culprit was charged under section 354 of the IPC after interfering with the epithelial duct of a child who was seven and a half months old. According to the high courts in Patna and Haryana, the victim’s youth prevented him or her from being furious out of modesty. However, the Supreme Court has ruled that evidence or intent on the part of the suspect should be viewed as the causal cause rather than the feelings of the woman against whom such an act is done.

The proof that the woman felt her modesty was angry does not constitute an offense in cases where such associate degree intention or data has not been proven, as the crucial component is associate degree intention or data on the part of the suspect. The Supreme Court found the defendant guilty as a result of the suspect’s attractiveness and sentenced him to two years of strict incarceration. The culprit has to pay a fine of 1000 rupees. A settlement of Rs. 500 was given to the child out of that sum.

State of Madhya Pradesh v. Ramkripal Singh, AIR 2007 SC 370

The Supreme Court finally defined modesty in this significant judgment by establishing that a woman’s sex is the core of her modesty. It was defined as “Decorous in manner and conduct; not forward or lower; Shame-fast; religiously chaste” when applied to a girl. The suspect begged for a lesser punishment so as not to be held accountable under section 354 for upsetting the modesty of a woman. However, the Supreme Court ordered that it result in rape because penetration had already occurred. Section 354 of the IPC only applies to activities that need to be stopped before they may be penetrated. The attractiveness was fired as a result.

Rajasthan State v. Ram Pratap

The suspect was found guilty under Section 354 of the IPC, 1860, for allegedly entering the victim’s home when she was alone, forcing her to lie on a bed, and acting inappropriately with her. However, there was no preparation made to commit rape.[5]

Kanwar Pal Singh Gill & Anr. V. Mrs. Rupan Deol Bajaj & Anr.

The Butt Slapping Case is another name for this incident. The complainant in this case was an Indian officer. Administrative Services and K.P.S. was the target of a lawsuit. Gill for violating her secrecy in violation of sections 354, and 504 of IPC. There was a trial for the case, and the plaintiff is under a lot of pressure to drop the case as she disclosed. She did not, however, take her case back. The defendant was found guilty of insulting a person’s modesty since he was unable to demonstrate his innocence.

IAS officer who was a woman. Additionally, he was mandated to provide her with Rs. 2 lakhs compensation. Mrs. Deol declined to accept payment as payment. It must be provided to women’s organisations, the court said. However, his prison term was changed to “probation.”


Despite the numerous laws designed to defend and protect women’s rights and interests, the prevalence of crime against and victimization of women is skyrocketing. It is often claimed that dance requires two people. It means that the rise in crimes against women in our society is not solely under the authority of the law.

The eradication of discrimination against women and the instillation of social ethics, morality, and values, as well as respect and dignity for all people toward women, are urgent needs that can also help to lower the rate of crimes against women. However, more and more restrictive regulations are required in order to prevent anyone planning to commit such crimes from gathering the courage to carry out his plan.[6]