A special court designated under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act on Monday sentenced a 33-year-old footpath dweller to five-years in prison for abducting at night a four-year-old child sleeping near a fuel retail outlet with her mother in Mahalaxmi area and sexually and physically assaulting her.
Special Judge Rekha N. Pandhare found the man, working with a catering service, guilty of the offence of kidnapping as well as under the POCSO Act for aggravated sexual assault.
Veena Shelar, Special Public Prosecutor, said that the child was seven years old when she deposed before the court. The child’s mother also testified.
As per the complaint lodged by the child’s mother at Gamdevi police station, on 8 May 2017, her husband had gone to work and she and her child were sleeping near a fuel retail outlet in Mahalaxmi area. Around 4 am she woke up and found her child was running towards her from Pedder Road direction and was crying. The child pointed towards a man and said the ‘mad man’ had taken her away and physically and sexually assaulted before leaving her. The mother who recognized the man, had called after him, but he had fled. Later her father had gone in search of the man. He questioned the man and the latter had started a scuffle. The police had arrived and a complaint was lodged.