Mumbai: Trial not begun for 5 yrs, POCSO undertrial pleads guilty, convicted

Bhavna UchilUpdated: Tuesday, March 22, 2022, 08:38 PM IST
article-image

A 25-year-old youth who served as a watchman and had been an undertrial for five years in a 2016 sexual assault case involving a minor, pleaded guilty to charges against him recently and was convicted. A Dindoshi special court sentenced him for the period he had already spent in prison.

The court designated under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO), noted that due to the pandemic, he could not be produced before it and the charge could not be framed. As per procedure, the court frames charges if it finds sufficient evidence against an accused person as per the police probe, following which then the trial begins. The court stated in its order that the accused sent a letter from jail wherein he pleaded guilty to the offences and was then produced before the court.

The court then framed charges against him under Sec 354 of the IPC (assault or criminal force on woman with intention to outrage modesty) and Sec 8 of the POCSO Act (punishment for sexual assault on minor) under which he had been booked by the Malvani police and arrested in Oct 2016. In the complaint it was alleged that the youth who worked as a watchman had made unwelcome advances towards a 15-year-old girl who lived in the vicinity of his workplace. He had also made inappropriate touches to her, besides stalking her.

While deciding the youth’s application pleading guilty to the charges, the court noted that he is alleged to have committed offences which are punishable by three years imprisonment and fine. The court also considered that he is aged 25 years, poor and served as a watchman.

“The accused has been in jail since Oct 16, 2016 which is more than five years and the trial could not start due to the Corona pandemic…the application needs to be accepted by imposing reasonable sentences after considering the facts and circumstances of the case,” Special Judge AZ Khan stated in the order. The court said he is entitled for deduction of sentence for the period he had undergone in prison. He would thus be released from prison.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. To receive it on Telegram, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

RECENT STORIES

'He was keen...': Ross Taylor on his attempt to get Ben Stokes play cricket for New Zealand

'He was keen...': Ross Taylor on his attempt to get Ben Stokes play cricket for New Zealand

'Saare jahan se accha...': Indian cricket fraternity extends Independence Day wishes to nation

'Saare jahan se accha...': Indian cricket fraternity extends Independence Day wishes to nation

Iran denies being involved in attack on Salman Rushdie

Iran denies being involved in attack on Salman Rushdie

Independence Day 2022: Flashmob at Dubai's Al Ghurair Centre to mark anniversary year

Independence Day 2022: Flashmob at Dubai's Al Ghurair Centre to mark anniversary year

Sameer Wankhede files a case against NCP leader Nawab Malik: Mumbai Police

Sameer Wankhede files a case against NCP leader Nawab Malik: Mumbai Police