THE BOMBAY High Court recently upheld the conviction of man for raping a girl, observing that the evidence put up by the prosecution regarding the incident — a case of penetrative sexual assault — would have to be appreciated keeping in mind the tender age of the survivor, who may not be able to narrate the explicit details of the incident.
The prosecution has alleged that around 4 pm on March 26, 2013, the day of Holi, the accused — a neighbour of the eight-year-old victim, who is a student of Class III — had allured the girl by offering some eatables and taken her to a secluded place near her house. There, the accused allegedly raped her behind a car.
The mother learnt about the incident the next day when the child complained about having trouble urinating. A complaint was filed with a police station in Solapur. Later, the accused was sentenced to 10 years in jail under IPC sections and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act by the Solapur sessions court.
An advocate appearing for the accused told the court that the prosecution has not examined the doctor, who had examined the child when she reported having trouble urinating. He added that the evidence presented by the investigating officer has shown that the doctor could not give an opinion on whether the child was sexually assaulted.
While upholding the conviction last week, Justice A M Badar noted that the child has said in her statement that the accused offered her some eatables and took her behind a white car where she was stripped and then he laid upon her.
“Considering her tender age, it is explicit that she was not in a position to narrate in detail the act committed by the appellant/accused on her by taking her to the secluded place. Evidence regarding the penetrative sexual assault coming from the mouth of the prosecution will have to be appreciated by keeping in mind tender age of the victim child,” the court said.