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Wednesday, Nov 20, 2019

POCSO court acquits 19-year-old accused of sexually abusing lover in Mumbai

In February 2014, the duo had eloped to the man’s native place in Satara as the girl threatened to commit suicide if he refused to take her with him.

mumbai Updated: Aug 28, 2019 19:11 IST
Charul Shah
Charul Shah
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
(Representational image)
         

A Special Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) court acquitted a 19-year-old man booked for kidnapping and sexually abusing a 16-year-old on the grounds that the duo was in a relationship and the girl had threatened to commit suicide if the man did not elope with her.

In February 2014, the duo had eloped to the man’s native place in Satara as the girl threatened to commit suicide if he refused to take her with him. “The accused never had the intention of sex at the time of eloping with the girl. His intention was to make sure the victim does not harm herself,” the court observed while clearing the man from all charges.

The special judge Preeti Kimar Ghule further observed that the law does not prohibit youngsters from having a love affair. Only marriage is prohibited for a girl below 18 years and a boy below 21. “The case of love relation tried to be brought into the ambit of rape so that the lovers can be taught a lesson,” the court observed.

The duo had met in 2013. The accused used to work near a shop run by the girl’s relative. On February 24, 2014, the girl left her house for college but did not return. The family lodged a missing complaint with the Trombay police. In her statement to the police, the girl said she was annoyed with her mother and had called the accused to Mumbai from Satara. He reached the city on February 21, 2014. It was stated that the girl threatened to commit suicide if the boy refused to take her along to Satara.

On March 7, 2014, the duo presented themselves before the police with the help of a lawyer.