Section 493 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 deals with the offence of Cohabitation caused by a man deceitfully inducing a belief of lawful marriage. Under this section a man either married or unmarried who induces a women to become, as she thinks, his wife, but in reality his concubine, is punishable for the offence of Cohabitation caused by a man deceitfully inducing a belief of lawful marriage, with imprisonment for a term of 10 years and shall also be liable to fine or both.
In order to constitute an offence under Section 493 of Indian Penal Code, 1860, there shall be a;
- Deceit causing false belief in the existence of a lawful marriage;
- Cohabitation of sexual intercourse with the person causing such belief
However, if a woman married a man with the knowledge that, he was already a married man and there was no proof that the man falsely induced her to believe anything, it was held that, the ingredients of the offence under Section 493 were not made out1.
Where a man and woman exchanged garlands, the man promising to marry formally, and had se as a result of which the woman became pregnant, it was held that, exchange of garland did not amount to falsely inducing the woman to believe that she was married to the man2.
In Akhaya Kumar v. State3, the accused and the prosecutrix were in love with each other for several years. The accused married another and still continued to cohabit with the prosecutrix on false pretences of marrying her. The prosecutrix was aware of this fact. Hence, there was no deception. Framing of charge against the accused under Section 493 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 was not proper.