Observing that the mother has ‘divine powers’ to understand the feeling of her child without being conveyed by words, the Aurangabad bench of the Bombay High Court recently upheld the conviction of a 20-year-old man for attempting to rape a minor girl. The HC, however, commuted his sentence after taking into account the fact that he was a ‘child in conflict with law’ at the time of the offence.
A single-judge bench of Justice Vibha Kankanwadi said, "The relationship of a mother and a daughter would always be of confidence and the mother would be having her own skill to extract about the things that have happened with her child."
"It will not be an exaggeration, if it can be observed that the mother has that divine power to understand the feelings like happiness or sorrows of the child. Many times, she understands it without it being conveyed in words. She understands the mood of the child from his or her appearance and/ or actions also. She can understand the agony that the child undergoes and she would be the first person to offer security to the child," the judge observed.
The relationship of a mother and a daughter would always be of confidence and the mother would be having her own skill to extract about the things that have happened with her child
Justice Vibha Kankanwadi
The judge further said that the child usually opens up and conveys what s/he wants or went through. "In the extreme childhood of any child, his or her mother would understand the language of the child even if s/he may not be talking properly. Mothers of a deaf-and-dumb or even mentally challenged child can understand their language," the judge noted.
The strong observations were made while dealing with an appeal filed by the juvenile convict, who sought to quash his conviction under charges of rape and the stringent POSCO law.
To buttress his case, the convict argued before the trial court that the victim did not specify as to what exactly happened with her and emphasised on her words, wherein she had said that ‘something happened and she started crying in pain.’
"Even if the child was unable to tell before the court as to what had happened with her on the day of incident, yet the other evidence that has been produced by the prosecution is required to be considered here by keeping aside the testimony of the child," Justice Kankanwadi said.
"However, it is required to be observed that the child in conflict with law will not get any kind of advantage, when the victim in this case was not able to convey the happenings that had happened with her on the day of the incident," the judge added.
The court, accordingly, held that the conviction was correct, but since the trial court had considered him as an adult at the time of offence, Justice Kankanwadi commuted his sentence to five years from 10 years as at the time of offence he was 17 years old.
As per the prosecution, the juvenile in conflict with law had taken the minor girl to his house and had tried to penetrate. However, he couldn't do so since the child's mother entered his house after hearing the minor's screams.
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