New Delhi: A Delhi court has given a lighter punishment of three years` imprisonment to a 19-year-old youth for sexually assaulting a minor girl student here, noting there was some intimacy between the convict and the victim earlier.
Additional Sessions Judge Pawan Kumar Jain, however, refused to release the convict on probation of good conduct, saying, in that case "object of legislature to provide minimum sentence will be defeated".
The court handed down jail term to Delhi resident Manish for sexually assaulting a Class XI student of a government school at Partap Nagar here on January 15, 2013, the offence committed under sections of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
"Indisputably, convict is a young boy of 19+ years and he has no criminal antecedents. It is also proved during trial that there was some intimacy/friendship between convict and victim... In view of the said mitigating factors, I do not find any substance in the contention of Additional Public Prosecutor for maximum sentence.
"However, simultaneously, it is also an undisputed fact that a minimum sentence of three years has been provided for the offence punishable under Section 8 of POCSO Act. Thus, if convict be released on probation of good conduct...The object of legislature to provide minimum sentence will be defeated," the judge said, while imposing a fine of Rs 2,000 on the convict.
The youth was convicted for the offence punishable under Section 8 (sexual assault) and 12 (sexual harassment) of POCSO Act, read with sections of IPC including 506 (amounting for criminal intimidation).
According to the prosecution, the accused came to the victim`s class room and abused her.
The accused had also asked her whether she would talk to him and love him and when victim denied the same, he threatened to kill her and her family members, it said.
The youth had denied prosecution charges, saying the victim was in love with him since long and they studied in the same school.
However the court rejected the submission, saying it was not proved that the said intimacy continued and was in existence in the year 2013 too and even in that case, it does not permit the accused to enter the class room of victim and to misbehave or sexually assault the victim.