Consent to Have Sex

Last updated on Apr 8, 2022

Trigger Warning: The following content contains information on sexual and physical violence which some readers may find disturbing.

No. The law does not recognize a child’s ability to give consent to have sex. This means that if an adult (above the age of 18) asks a child (below 18 years) to engage in any kind of sexual activity, and the child says yes explicitly or implies that they consent, this activity will still be considered as child sexual abuse or rape under the law.1

Consent Between Children

If two children engage in sexual activities willingly, it is still considered illegal. The age of consent for girls and boys is 18 years.2 Read more information in our explainer “Children Accused of Crimes”.

  1. Independent Thought v. Union of India and Another (2017) 10 SCC 800.[]
  2. Section 2(d), The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012; Independent Thought v Union of India and Another (2017) 10 SCC 800.[]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a question you want to ask our legal experts?

Related Resources

Child-Friendly Court Process

There are Special Courts set up to deal with child sexual abuse because of the sensitivity of the issue. Unlike normal Courts, these Courts are supposed to follow a special procedure to make sure that the child feels safe and comfortable.
Crimes and Violence

Types of Child Sexual Abuse

Indian law classifies the types of child sexual abuse into different types of crimes, regardless of the child’s gender .
Crimes and Violence

Recording a Child’s Statement on Sexual Abuse

While recording a child’s statement on the abuse, the police should follow the rules laid down in law, mentioned herein.
Crimes and Violence

Reporting Child Sexual Abuse

If you are aware of any incident and are reasonably certain that a child is a victim of any form of sexual abuse please use any of the ways mentioned herein to contact an authority to help the child out.
Crimes and Violence

Procedure for Adoption by Relative (Non-Religious Law)

As a relative of a child, following the non-religious law to adopt, you can adopt both within India and also do inter-country adoptions.

Child Sexual Abuse By A Family Member

When a child is sexually abused by a family member, they face a more severe punishment than someone who is not a family member since they are in a position of authority and trust to the child.
Crimes and Violence