The court of district and sessions judge RK Sondhi here on Thursday sentenced a man to 10 years' rigorous imprisonment for raping his daughter over a period of several years. Though the girl had later turned hostile, the empanelled advocates, before whom she had first recorded her statement, stood by the case and ensured that the man was punished.
On August 9, 2013, the 19-year-old victim had got a case registered against her father Uma Shankar, 45. As per her statement, her father had raped her first about 7-8 years ago, when she was around 12. At that time, she did not have any knowledge of the gravity of the crime, she had claimed. She was raped while her mother was sleeping, and her father had told her not to tell anyone. After that, she was raped almost every month whenever the girl's mother went outside for work.
The victim told the police that in the past 3-4 years, she realised the gravity of the crime but could not tell anyone out of fear. Her father had, in fact, threatened to kill her if she told anyone. Most recently, she was raped in May 2013, after which she finally told her mother. Even after that, barely two days before she approached the police, her father tried to rape her but she escaped.
Her statement was recorded in the presence of district legal services authority (DLSA) panel advocates Shailendar Kaur and Manbir Singh Rathi, and then a statement before the magistrate was also recorded as per norms.
However, during the trial, taking a u-turn, the victim and her mother refuted their allegations. But the DLSA advocates stood by their statements, based on which Uma Shankar was convicted on Wednesday and now sentenced.
The victim has five siblings - two sisters and three brothers - and the family hails from Uttar Pradesh.