Adopting a tough stance against “brutal, barbaric and an inhuman rape of a one and half year girl by a married 30-year old neighbour” the Nagpur bench of Bombay high court on Wednesday has sentenced him to life imprisonment and described perpetrator of such a heinous crime “monster” and for betraying “trust, belief and confidence reposed on an elder by mother of the girl child and for
shattering human relationship.”
A division bench of the court, consisting of Justice AP Lavande and Justice Arun Chaudhari while maintaining conviction of accused Dattu Mengu Shende for the lecherous act against minor girl child sentenced him for life.
The court also refused to show any leniency towards accused, though he had a family to support.
The prosecution had charged Dattu with forceful sexual assault of the victim which led to profuse bleeding from her private parts.
Victim’s mother and her lady friend thought that accused was playing with the child, but were shocked to find blood stains on frock of her daughter.
The accused even threatened both the ladies to repeat same act with them. They promptly filed a complaint of rape with the police and medical examinations confirmed brutal sexual assault of girl child.
The appellant was charged for the offence punishable under Sections 363, 366 and 376(2) (f) of Indian Penal Code and under Section 3(1)(x) of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
The appellant was convicted and sentenced for the offence punishable under Section 376(2) (f) of Indian Penal Code by trial court.
The accused denied allegation and claimed that he had removed the underwear of the girl because she had urinated and at the time of doing so, a nail of his hand entered her private parts and there was some bleeding but he did not commit sexual offence.
The trial court and high court both rejected this cooked-up defence. On the contrary, the medical evidence unequivocally confirmed rape committed by accused and high court rejected feeble defence raising doubts over veracity of testimony by two prosecution witnesses - mother and her lady friend.
Authoring the judgement on behalf of the bench Justice Arun Chaudhari noted, “We find that the appellant (accused) is the immediate neighbour of the complainant and element of faith and trust in the neighbour is the hall mark of human relationship. The appellant is a well grown married person of 30 years. He did not even think that the girl child of one and a half year who could not even walk properly much less resist or run away, could not have been subjected to such a heinous crime. The appellant did not think of the fact that the small child was like his daughter and would suffer immense pains and sufferings. His behaviour was of a monster. We do not think that the appellant deserves any leniency or sympathy, though he may have a family to support. In the light of the rising crime against the girl child and women, we do not think that the appellant can be shown any leniency, so far as imposition of sentence is concerned.”