In nine working days, UP special court convicts man of raping 4-year-old
The accused was awarded life imprisonment for raping a four-year-old girl. A special court for Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act in Auraiya district of Uttar Pradesh conducted daily hearings of the case.Updated: Aug 31, 2019 01:06 IST
Setting an example of swift delivery of justice, a special court for Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act in Auraiya district of UP concluded a rape trial within nine working days, convicting the 22-year-old accused on Thursday. The accused was awarded life imprisonment for raping a four-year-old girl. He was also slapped with a penalty of ₹2 lakh, which has to be paid to the victim’s family.
Superintendent of police (SP), Auraiya, Suniti (goes by single name) said, “Additional district judge Rajesh Chauhan of POCSO Court convicted Shyam Veer in nine working days (total 10 days, including a Sunday) by conducting daily hearings in the case.”
“In such cases, witnesses can turn hostile over time. This gives advantage to the accused and they can get acquitted. So, we were pushing to file the charge-sheet at the earliest and get a speedy trial underway,” said the SP.
She said that the girl was raped by Shyam Veer, who lived in the same neighbourhood, on the afternoon of August 1. “The accused lured her to his house when she was playing outside her home and raped her. Her parents lodged an FIR under section 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code and section 5/6 of the POCSO Act,” said Suniti.
Section 5/6 of the POCSO Act provides the option of stringent punishment, including death penalty, for committing aggravated penetrative sexual assault on a child.
A TEAM EFFORT
The SP said that everybody from the investigating officer (IO) to the prosecution officer and the court played praiseworthy roles in making this case an example of swift delivery of justice in a heinous crime.
“Sub-inspector (S-I) Brijesh Bhargava, the IO, arrested the accused a day after the crime, on August 2, and professionally collected all the evidences and recorded the witnesses’ statements. We were able to file the charge-sheet on August 18 and it was accepted by the court on August 20,” said Suniti.
Bhargava said that statements of nine witnesses, including the victim and her parents, were recorded. “The child boldly gave her statement to the court --thanks to the effective counselling she received by women constables Pramila Yadav and Shobha Devi, who had also registered the FIR and recorded her statement,” he said.
He also mentioned the positive roles played by Dr Seema Gupta, who medically examined the girl, and anganwadi worker Kalpana, who helped the court verify the victim’s age. “Kalpana is posted at the pre-primary school where the girl went. The child had gone there even on the day of the crime,” he said.
Bhargava said an independent witness, Madhu Bala, had spotted the accused taking the girl away. “Her testimony played a crucial role in the trial. Apart from that, the guidance provided by the additional district government counsel, Jitendra Tomar, and the court’s decision to take up the case on priority also helped greatly in the judicial proceedings,” he said.
Auraiya is about 180km south-west of the state capital, Lucknow.