With a Child Welfare Committee (CWC) probe revealing that a “fabricated” complaint had been lodged against five minor children, the complainant and the police officials who had registered the case are likely to face the heat.
The High Court order directing Madurai Superintendent of Police Vijayendra Bidari not to spare any person behind creating false and fabricated stories has turned the heat on the complainant, the father of a girl child, and the police officials who had booked minor boys and a girl under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.
“Even Section 22 (1) of POCSO states any person, who makes a false complaint or provides false information against any person, in respect of an offence committed under Sections 3, 5, 7 and Section 9, solely with the intention to humiliate, extort or threaten or defame him, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months or with fine or with both,” a High Court advocate said.
While Section 22 (2) spares children of any punishment for making false complaint or providing false information, Section 22 (3) states that whoever, not behind a child, makes a false complaint or provides false information against a child, knowing it to be false, thereby victimising such child in any of the offences under this Act, shall be punished with imprisonment which may extend to one year or with fine or with both.
Meanwhile, Puthiya Tamilagam functionary and the petitioner in the case, S. Baskar Mathuram, said that the district administration denied him a copy of the CWC report that had also concluded that a caste Hindu leader had put undue pressure on the police to register the case. “Had I got the report, I would have impressed upon the Superintendent of the Police to act immediately on the case,” he said.
The advocate also pointed out that Section 83 of Indian Penal Code stated that any act of a child above seven and under 12 would not be an offence. The Section states that the child above seven and under 12 of immature understanding — nothing is an offence which is done by a child above seven years of age and under 12, who has not attained sufficient maturity of understanding to judge the nature and consequences of his conduct on that occasion.