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Odisha minor gang rape: 5 awarded life term in 30 days

On May 3, the girl was allegedly gang-raped by her boyfriend Afzal and four other friends in two different places in Sambalpur. She committed suicide by hanging herself to death at her home on May 23.

india Updated: Jun 03, 2018 12:30 IST
Debabrata Mohanty
Debabrata Mohanty
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar
Gang rape,Minor,Odisha
On May 3, the girl was allegedly gang-raped by her boyfriend Afzal and four other friends in two different places in Sambalpur. She committed suicide by hanging herself to death at her home on May 23.(REUTERS FILE PHOTO)

Five youths in Odisha’s Sambalpur district were on Saturday sentenced to life imprisonment for gang-raping a 16-year-old girl 30 days back.

On May 3, the girl was allegedly gang-raped by her boyfriend Afzal and four other friends in two different places in Sambalpur. She committed suicide by hanging herself to death at her home on May 23.

After a marathon trial of 14 hours which ended at 10 pm on Saturday, special Pocso judge, Udaybhanu Jena sentenced Afzal and four of his friends to life under section 6 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences(Pocso) Act and section 376(D) of Indian Penal Code, said public prosecutor Artatrana Mishra.

“Afzal was the main accused who first sexually assaulted the girl and then asked his friends to assault her,” Mishra said, adding that the final hearing began at 7.30 am on Saturday and 21 witnesses were produced.

Other accused who have been sentenced to life are Ashirbad Behera, Abhilash Panchbhia, Tinu Sahu and Hadu Panchbhia.

A juvenile who was witness to the crime and an accused in the case is being separately tried in a juvenile justice court.

This is the fastest judgement in a rape case in Odisha. Last month, a Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra had asked all the high courts of the country to ensure fast-tracking of trials of all cases of sexual assault of children.

The apex court had also asked high courts to instruct trial courts not to grant unnecessary adjournments during trials of cases under Pocso Act.

First Published: Jun 03, 2018 12:30 IST