HC upholds sentence for molester
The Bombay high court, last week, declined to show leniency towards a shopkeeper from Akola convicted of molesting a school-girl, and confirmed his three-month prison term.mumbai Updated: Aug 17, 2011 01:00 IST
The Bombay high court, last week, declined to show leniency towards a shopkeeper from Akola convicted of molesting a school-girl, and confirmed his three-month prison term.
“The object of punishment is to protect society by stamping out the offender and imposing stern sentence where it should be, and tempered with mercy if so warrants,” justice AP Bhangale observed while dismissing 29-year-old Vikas Ghodke’s appeal.
“The sentence is required to be proportionate to the crime committed,” Justice Bhangale said while rejecting Ghodke’s plea for leniency. “It must also ensure the adequate deterrence for like-minded prospective offenders,” the judge added.
A magistrate court at Akola had convicted Ghodke for outraging the modesty of the school-girl when she went to refill her pen in his shop in February 2006.
The court had sentenced him to 3 months’ simple imprisonment.
Ghodke moved the high court after a sessions court, in March 2011, dismissed his appeal against the magistrate court’s verdict. He had challenged the conviction and sentence on various grounds, apart from seeking leniency and release on probation under the Probation of Offenders Act.
His counsel contended that there was no independent evidence, and the shopkeeper could not have been convicted solely basis of the testimony of the victim.
Justice Bhangale rejected the contention noting a victim of molestation and indignation is in the same position as an injured witness and her testimony should receive the same weight. The judge refused to interfere with his conviction and sentence saying there would be no justification in interfering with concurrent findings of two lower courts.