A special court Friday sentenced a 30-year-old man to life imprisonment for raping a six-year-old girl, in the first such conviction in Odisha following the passage of Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill 2018, in Parliament.
A POCSO court in Balasore district held the man guilty of rape after a speedy trial. “This is the first conviction in the rape of a minor following the passage of the Bill,” said public prosecutor Pranab Panda. The convict raped the girl twice at his residence in May. After hearing the girl scream, children playing nearby alerted their parents, who later rescued the girl.
The girl’s mother had died in 2015 after which her father deserted the girl and her older sister. The two girls were taken in by her mother’s distant cousin. “The accused had been living alone with the child, who he called his god daughter. In May, he brought the child from his older brother, after his (accused) wife abandoned him,” said Chandipur police station inspector Rajendra Das.