After spending four years in prison as an undertrial, a 27-year-old labourer pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a four-year-old child before a special court and was sentenced to four-years rigorous imprisonment by the court.
The youth Balakram Tiwari was arrested on February 6, 2017 and has been in prison since the next day. Since he is entitled to a set-off for the time already spent in jail, he will be released now.
The court said in its judgement last Thursday that the accused who was produced from jail before it, made a written plea that he wants to plead guilty. Special judge HC Shende stated that earlier too he had made such a plea, but had then reconsidered it on the opportunity given by the court. When he made the plea again, the court explained to him the nature of the offence and the punishment he would have to go through if he pleaded guilty. Judge Shende then requested an advocate to explain the consequences to him. He reiterated that he wanted to plead guilty. The court then considered his submission as one without pressure or promise from anybody.
While the prosecution requested that he be given the maximum punishment of five-years-jail, Tiwari requested leniency and said he had already spent a long time in prison. He told the court that he had realized his mistake and wanted to live a respectable life in future for which he asked the court to give him an opportunity.
Judge Shende while deciding the quantum of punishment which for his offences, could extend to five years, considered the period already spent in prison, while sentencing him to four-years-imprisonment.
Tiwari, from UP, residing as a tenant at Malvani, had ushered the victim into his house while she was playing outside. He had made her sit on his lap and pulling down her underwear had touched her private part.