The Karnataka High Court has quashed the acquittal order of a rape accused father by the Belagavi POCSO court and awarded him 10 years of imprisonment along with a fine of Rs 50,000.
The High Court has slammed the biased approach of the lower court towards the victim.
A division bench headed by Justices H.T. Narendra Prasad and Rajendra Badamikar gave the verdict on Wednesday. The prosecution has submitted an appeal to the High Court questioning the order of acquittal of the accused by the Special POCSO court.
The bench has observed that the POCSO court had failed to consider the trauma that the minor girl has suffered due to sexual assault. It further noted that the lower court has seen the case with biased mindset in a case where the daughter was made victim of rape by the father.
There is no reason for the girl to give false statements against her father. In cases where the victim’s evidence is considerate and reliable, the courts have to be sensible. The proceedings of the trial court have been tainted and peculiar which is not acceptable, the bench opined.
It did not consider the plea of the counsel appearing for the accused father, that he is an auto driver and his family members depended on him for livelihood. The court stated that there is no reason for the reduction of punishment.
The accused is alleged of sexually assaulting his 14-year-old daughter continuously in 2015 and kept her in the house arrest. The girl had opened up about it when she had come to her grandparent’s home. She had told her ordeal to grandmother and refused to go back to her house.
The grandmother had lodged a complaint with police in this regard in Belagavi police station. However, the POCSO court had shockingly acquitted the accused in February 3, 2017 stating that the statements of the victim, her grandmother and other witnesses are unreliable. The prosecution had questioned the acquittal in the higher court.