19-year-old gets death for raping infant in Alwar, first judgement under amended Pocso Act
A special court in Rajasthan Saturday sentenced to death a 19-year-old youth for raping a seven-month-old child in Alwar district in May, the first such sentencing in the state after a law entailing capital punishment to those convicted of raping a child below 12 years of age came into force, according to police.
The special court hearing cases of SC/ST Act and Pocso Act in Alwar awarded death penalty to Pintu, who was found guilty of raping the infant in Laxmangarh area in the district on May 9.
Special Judge Jagendra Agrawal, who had conducted daily hearings in the case for 30 days, had held the youth guilty on July 18, special public prosecutor Kuldeep Jain said.
Pintu was convicted under IPC sections 363, 366 A (related to abduction of minor) and 376 AB (for rape on woman under twelve years of age) and 5(M)/6 of Pocso Act. The death penalty was awarded under the IPC section 376 AB, SHO of the Laxmangarh police station Prahlad Sahay said.
According to DGP OP Galhotra, it was the first such judgement in Rajasthan after the criminal law (amendment) ordinance, which introduced IPC Section 376 AB came into force on April 21 this year under which the provision of death penalty for raping a girl below 12 years of age was introduced
“The local police had filed a challan against Pintu under sections of Pocso Act and IPC on June 6,” IG Jaipur Hemant Priyadarshi said.
The incident took place in on May 9 when Pintu had taken the infant from her house when she was alone with her grandmother who is partially blind. He took the infant to a nearby school building and raped her. He was caught by locals who handed him over to the police.
Activists and rights bodies welcomed the order, saying it would set a precedent.
Rajasthan state women’s commission chairperson Suman Sharma said the decision “will set a precedent” and “will bring relief to mothers who worry about the safety of their daughters.”
She said the decision had come in record time and was a befitting reply to those who were questioning if the amended Pocso act would be implemented effectively.
Deepak Kalra, former chairperson of the Rajasthan State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (RSCPCR), said the decision has set an example. “I hope other pending cases will also be resolved soon, as this judgement will become a guide for other such cases,” he added.
Nisha Sidhu, chief general secretary of the National Federation of Indian women said the decision was welcome as it gave justice to the victim and her family. She, however, added that death penalty was not a solution as the accused would not be made to repent for his crime. Instead the accused in such cases should be jailed and suffer for their crime, she said.
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