Minor rape victim left in lurch, not produced before welfare committee even after 48 hours

  • Jatinder Kohli, Hindustan Times, Jalandhar
  • Updated: Sep 04, 2014 22:41 IST

A 15-year-old minor girl, who was allegedly raped by her neighbour on the pretext of marriage, was not produced before the child welfare committee (CWC) even after she was shifted to the state protective home 48 hours ago.

The district administration has also apparently failed to provide any relief to the girl, who was also allegedly molested and sexually harassed by her father for years.

The Juvenile Justice Act, 2006, which confers judicial powers on the CWC, mandates that all children in need of care and protection be produced before the committee within 24 hours whenever any case occurs.
A case under Sections 363 (kidnapping) and 366a (procuration of minor girl) was registered on June 10 this year against Rajinder Kumar (18) who had allegedly kidnapped the minor by promising marriage and made sexual relations with her for two months.

Late Tuesday night, a police party rescued the minor girl from a rented accommodation in Ludhiana.
When the girl's statement was recorded before the judge, she said Kumar had made sexual relations with her after which Section 376 (rape) was also added against the accused who was sent to judicial custody.
After the girl gave a statement that she did not want to go home, she was referred to the state protective home in Basti Guzan Jalandhar on Tuesday night.

Further, the medical examination of the girl in the civil hospital has still not been conducted.
A senior official of the administration said protection was not the only thing the victim required. He said she needed post-trauma care by specialised counsellors.

He added that in this case, the girl was also allegedly sexually harassed by her father and one could easily gauge the trauma she was facing but she had been left uncared for. The official said the last meeting of CWC was held in August 13, 2014.

When contacted, Sukesh Kalia, vice chairman of Punjab State Commission for Protection of Child Rights said the girl should have been produced before the child welfare committee within 24 hours of the complaint and the step was mandatory under the Juvenile Justice Act.

Kalia further said it was shocking that the medical examination of the girl had still not been conducted and claimed that he would seek a report from the district administration over the incident.
Jaswinder Kaur, superintendent of the state protective home said she was on leave and was not aware of the victim.

Jalandhar deputy commissioner KK Yadav said he would immediately call the police commissioner to make arrangements for producing the girl before CWC.

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