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Court upholds conviction on 4-yr-old girl`s deposition

Last Updated: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 - 21:43

New Delhi: A Delhi court has upheld the
conviction of a man for beating and trying to outrage the
modesty of a four-year-old girl relying solely on her
deposition made three years after the alleged incident, saying
that a child is likely to remember unpleasant things for long.

"In my view, an unpleasant memory is likely to remain
fixed in the mind of a child and is likely to have a long term
impact, not only on her physical but also on her emotional
well-being," Additional Sessions Judge Kaveri Baweja said,
dismissing convict`s Mohd Saleem appeal against his conviction
and six-month jail term.
The sessions court dismissed Saleem`s contention that
the magisterial court had erred in placing strong reliance on
the testimony of the minor victim while convicting him.

It ignored the fact that no other eye witness was
produced in the court, he had contended.

Saleem was sentenced to six months in jail after he
was found guilty on charges of assaulting the minor girl with
an intention to outrage her modesty and intimidating her
mother Shabana, on whose complaint the case was registered.
Shabana had complained that Saleem had beaten up her
minor daughter and had tried to undress her to outrage her
modesty on May 5, 2005. She said he also threatened her.

Saleem had moved the sessions court contending that
the trial court had erred in convicting him as it could not
solely rely on the testimony of the victim who was just
four-year-old at the time of the alleged incident.
She could not have narrated the entire incident after
a lapse of three years while deposing in the court, he added.

The sessions court rejected his contention saying, "I
find myself unable to agree with the said argument that the
child victim would not be able to remember the incident in
question so as to depose in the court as in the present case.

"I am inclined to agree with the the trial court that
the testimony of the minor remained unshaken despite her
cross-examination," the ASJ said and directed that Saleem be
taken into custody.


First Published: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 - 21:43
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