Bombay HC grants bail to juvenile sentenced for raping a minor on grounds that his future might be ruined
The juvenile was sentenced to seven years of rigorous imprisonment for the offence under the POCSO Act, 2012, and to three years jail term for the IPC offence, and was remanded to the Borstal School in Nashik.Updated: Aug 13, 2020 19:15 IST
The Aurangabad bench of the Bombay high court (HC) has granted bail to a juvenile, who was tried by a sessions court for raping a minor and had been remanded to the Borstal School in Nashik, on the grounds that his future might be ruined in company of hardened criminals if he were to be sent to a regular prison after he turned 21.
“It would be appropriate to suspend the sentence passed by the trial court in light of the tender age of the appellant and looking at the aspect that he will turn 21 soon,” said Justice Shrikant Kulkarni while granting bail to the resident of Maharashtra’s Nandurbar district.
“If he is allowed to be remanded to prison (after he turns 21), there is every possibility that he may mix with hardened criminals and his future may be ruined,” the judge added.
Though a juvenile at the time of the incident, the Nandurbar resident was tried by a sessions court, instead of the juvenile justice board (JJB) as is the norm.
On February 14, 2019, an additional sessions judge at Nandurbar had convicted him under section 354A (sexual harassment) of the Indian Penal Code and section 4 (penetrative sexual assault) of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO), Act, 2012.
The juvenile was sentenced to seven years of rigorous imprisonment for the offence under the POCSO Act, 2012, and to three years jail term for the IPC offence, and was remanded to the Borstal School in Nashik.
He had filed an application seeking bail during pendency of his appeal against the conviction, apprehending that he would be shifted to a regular prison after he turns 21.
His lawyer pointed out that the juvenile would turn 21 soon, and it was necessary to suspend his sentence and release him on bail because of his tender age.
The lawyer expressed apprehension that the juvenile would come in contact with hardened criminals, if he were to be shifted to a regular jail after he ceased to be a juvenile.
Justice Kulkarni accepted the argument and ordered the juvenile to be released on bail on furnishing a personal bond of Rs. 15,000 and a surety of the same amount.