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Man acquitted of sexually assaulting 13-year-old girl

ByRevu Suresh
Jun 16, 2024 07:14 AM IST

Special POCSO court in Mumbai acquits a man accused of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl in 2018, citing lack of evidence to prove charges.

MUMBAI: A special Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) court on Thursday acquitted a 28-year-old booked for sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl in 2018.

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Additional sessions judge Kalana Patil observed that the prosecution failed to prove the charges under Section 8 (punishment for sexual assault) of the POCSO Act and section 354 of the Indian Penal Code (using criminal force with an intention to outrage the modesty of a woman) against the man.

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As per the prosecution, the accused, a resident of NM Joshi Marg, allegedly proposed to the victim on January 26, 2018, by telling her that he would divorce his wife. The next day, the accused allegedly went to the victim’s house and touched her leg. The accused also showed her some money, added the prosecution.

After that incident, the minor’s father registered a complaint with the NM Joshi Marg police station. The defense noted that the mother of the accused and the victim’s wife had some dispute between them, because of which he was booked in a false case.

After hearing both sides, the court observed that the victim was a minor at the time of the incident. However, it noted that they were unable to prove that the accused touched her leg inappropriately and showed her money.

The court observed a discrepancy between the victim’s statement and her father’s oral testimony. Her father’s statement did not prove whether the accused visited the girl’s house and was present at the scene.

The judge said that the oral evidence of the victim does not prove section 354 of IPC. “The prosecution evidence also does not prove that the accused has committed any act of sexual assault i.e touched the victim with sexual intent”, the court said and ordered that the accused be released immediately.

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