Some say rape is a western thing and got introduced in India due to western influence. I was wondering whether any instance of rape was mentioned in Puranas or Itihasas. By the way, I am not interested in whether rape is right or wrong, what are the punishments prescribed, whether it is condemned, etc. I simply want to know any instance where somebody raped someone.

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    Is lust a western thing that rape will be a western thing? Also I think Ravana raped more than one woman during his lifetime. If I'm not wrong Brihaspati also forcefully enjoyed his brother's wife. There can be numerous such examples but scriptures are more or less spiritual guides and not manuals for keeping account of these things like rapes and masturbation
    – Rickross
    Jan 21, 2022 at 12:45
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    As Rickross said Ravana raped many.. For Rambha, u can find ref here - ancientvoice.wikidot.com/src-vrm:ram7-31 after which Nalakuvara cursed Ravana ("Whenever he shall, stricken by lust, ravish a reluctant damsel, his head shall be sundered into seven pieces.") ...
    – YDS
    Jan 21, 2022 at 14:04
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    Yes. There are some instances. One of those I seek to reconcile in this question - How to reconcile these incendiary acts of Devaguru Bṛhaspati, in the story of Dīrghatamas (from Mahābhārata)?
    – Vivikta
    Jan 21, 2022 at 14:22
  • Rape is a crime that is present in every society without exception. Dec 27, 2022 at 2:04

2 Answers 2


Yes , king Danda - son of Ikṣvāku raped his own guru's daughter named Araja.

From Padma Purana (This story is uttara kanda of ramayana too)

O descendant of Kakutstha, the righteous-minded Daṇḍa governed the kingdom, free from any source of vexation for many groups of myriads of years.20b-21a. Some time during the charming month of Caitra, the king approached the beautiful hermitage of Śukra.21b-23. There he saw Śukra’s daughter of matchless beauty on the earth, who was wandering in the forest. Seeing her tall and stout, being in (the prime of) youth, with moon-like face, beautiful, of a fine nose, charming in all limbs, with stout and raised breasts, slim in the waist and big (in size), he was pleased.24. Seeing her who had put on (only) one garment, who was (all) alone, and who was in her first (i.e. prime) youth, he naturally became tormented by love.25-26. Approaching the well-reposed unmarried girl he said (these) words to her: “O you lady of beautiful buttocks (i.e. O you beautiful lady), where from do you come? Whose daughter are you, O beautiful lady? I am tormented by love, therefore I am asking (you), O you beautiful lady. O charming lady, merely on seeing you, my heart is snatched by you.27. Know me to be dead I do not get to enjoy this your beautiful face which attracts the hearts of sages.28. My life is taken away by you; O beautiful lady, revive me. O you charming lady, I am your servant. Accept me who am your devotee.” 29. When the king, intoxicated by the passion of love, was thus talking, the daughter of Śukra politely spoke to him:30. “Know me to be the daughter of Bhārgava, i.e. Śukra of pious deeds. (I am) Arajā by name and the eldest daughter of (Śukra) living in the hermitage.31. O best king, my father is Śukra, and you are the disciple of that great-souled one. So, O king’s son, I am your spiritual sister.32. O king, please do not utter such words. You should (in fact) protect me from other very wicked men.33-34. My father is irascible and (when) angered will reduce you to ashes. Or (if) in view of the customary laws laid down for a king you (desire) to have union with me per force, ask my father through a prescribed course of conduct. O best king, request my father of a great lustre.35. Otherwise you will certainly meet with a great terrible grief. When my father is angry he would burn (even) the three worlds.”36. Hearing these inauspicious and very fearful and terrible words from (i.e. of) her, Daṇḍa, who was intoxicated by passion, said again with his head hung down:37-38. “O you beautiful lady, favour me who am mad with lust. O you beautiful lady, you have arrested my life; it will (now) perish. Let there be hostility or let me be even killed very (mercilessly) after I obtain you. O you timid one, resort to me—your devotee. I have great attachment for you.”39-40. Speaking thus, the king forcibly seized the girl with one hand, and snatched off her garments with the other (hand). He pressed her body with his body and put his mouth into hers (i.e. kissed her) and started copulating freely with her who was trembling (with fear).41. Having wrought that very dreadful and fearful mischief, Daṇḍa quickly went to his city like an intoxicated elephant.


Ravana was the worst villain of his time.

Ravana had raped Rambha, the daughter-in-law of Kubera [Ref: Mahabharata 3.278]. Ravana had also molested Rishi Kushadhwaja’s daughter Vedavati in Naimisha-vana (grove) near Kurukshetra in present-day Harayana state [Ref: Ramayana 7.17].

Ravana had molested Dvaipayana's sister, dragged Atri's wife by her hair, raped Rtuvarman's wife Madanamanjari, humiliated Agni's wife Svaha, tried kidnapping Brihaspati's daughter Sulekha, and tried humiliating God Brahma's daughter Punjika [Ref: Puranic Encyclopedia page 646].

As per folklore, Ravana had also raped Rishi Udanga’s daughter Malati on the banks of River Godavari.

Ravana had even cast his evil eye on Goddess Lakshmi in the higher regions. He was dumped back on Earth by God Vishnu, as he remained protected by God Brahma’s boon [Ref: Ramayana 7.28].

Source: 'Essence of the Fifth Veda' by Gaurang Damani pages 15-16

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