Mumbai: A 28-year-old man was convicted by a special court designated under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act for sexually harassing a four-year-old child who had visited his shop.
Special Judge AD Deo, under the POCSO Act, imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on the man, but did not direct any compensation for the child. The judgment stated that while recording the child’s evidence, it was not observed that she required any counselling and, hence, no such order is being passed.
The incident dates back to February, 2018, when the child, who was then going to nursery, had gone with her 11-year-old brother to a shop next to their building to buy a ‘pichkari’ for the then upcoming Holi festival. While her brother remained outside the shop, the shopkeeper took the child inside and exposed his private part and spoke vulgarly to her. The child got frightened and did not reveal the incident to her brother. It was only later that she told her mother about it, after which her parents took her near the shop and she identified the man who had misbehaved with her. They then lodged a police complaint.
The child was only six years old during her testimony in court. The judgment noted that she replied to most questions by nodding and gave short answers. She identified the man in court.