(Trigger warning: This article contains descriptions of sexual assault and physical violence. Reader discretion is advised.)
The Guwahati High Court on Monday, 23 August, granted bail to a 21-year-old man, accused of rape in the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) case, citing that he is the 'state's future asset'.
According to The Times of India, the rape accused was arrested on 3 April, after another student alleged that she was "sexually assaulted". The incident reportedly took place on 28 March, following which the woman had to be admitted to a hospital.
A bench led by Justice Ajit Borthakur, even said that 'there was a clear prima facie case as alleged against the accused', but still went on to grant bail.
"However, as the investigation in the case is completed and both the informant/girl and the accused are the state's future assets being talented students pursuing technical courses at the IIT, Guwahati,...continuation of detention of the accused...if charges are framed, may not be necessary," the order said, reported news agency PTI.
People on Twitter slammed the court's decision, calling it 'disgraceful'.
The accused has been charged under Section 376 (rape), 328 (causing hurt by means of poison), 307 (attempt to murder),120B (criminal conspiracy) under the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
The accused was asked to pay Rs 30,000 along with two sureties, before granting him bail.
Appearing for the surviver, advocate Sumitra Sarma and public prosecutor D Das opposed bail, citing 'serious offence', reported The Times of India.
"A perusal of the list of witnesses too, cited in the charge sheet, this court finds no possibility of the accused tampering with their evidence or influencing them directly or indirectly, if released on bail," the court added, PTI said.