Thane: A 25-year-old man was sentenced to one-month imprisonment by a court here for stalking a minor girl. District Judge VY Jadhav, in his order passed on Tuesday, also imposed a fine of Rs 20,000 on the accused, Shivkumar Mourya, after pronouncing him guilty under the Indian Penal Code’s Section 354D (stalking) and relevant provisions of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

The accused had earlier served one-month in jail following his arrest in the case. According to the prosecution, the accused and the victim were residents of the same locality here. The accused used to frequently stalk the Class X girl in 2015 when she would go to school.

Once while she was travelling in a bus, he sat next to her and tried to touch her inappropriately, the prosecution told the court. The girl later reported the matter to her mother. Based on the mother’s complaint, police lodged an FIR against the accused and subsequently arrested him. The accused was in custody for a month before getting bail in the case.

The prosecution told the court that though the accused had never threatened the girl, he continuously followed her, causing mental trauma. In view of this, the prosecution demanded maximum punishment (three years) to him under the relevant sections.

However, the defence counsel submitted that considering the age of the accused and absence of any criminal antecedents, he may be awarded a minimum punishment or a sentence for the period which he had already been in custody.

After hearing both the sides, the judge said that considering the age of the accused and lack of any criminal antecedents, in my view, directing him to suffer imprisonment of lesser period like one month along with the fine would suffice the purpose”.

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