Andhra Pradesh

Probe, trial in many POCSO, sexual assault cases pending


Verdict has not been given even in a single case registered so far

With a view to curbing the crimes against women and children in the State, the Legislative Assembly had unanimously passed the A.P. Disha Bill – 2019 on December 13.

Under the Bill, it is aimed at getting medical reports, expediting investigation and completing trial in 21 days after registration of the case and awarding punishment to the convicts.

However, investigation and trial in many cases registered under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012, and the sexual assault cases booked under Section 376 of the IPC have been pending for long. Verdict has not been given even in a single case.

Interestingly, the trial in two POCSO cases registered in Krishna and Guntur districts on December 13 (on the day the Disha Bill was passed) is in different stages. The four accused, who included two women, arrested in the cases are in judicial remand.

In the first case, a five-year-old girl had allegedly been sexually assaulted by her neighbour, an Intermediate student, under the Nagarampalem police station limits in Guntur district. The police had booked a case under the POCSO Act against the 19-year-old accused and sent him to judicial remand.

The Kanchikacherla police had registered a similar case against a 53-year-old man, an acquaintance of the victim’s mother, for allegedly sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl in Krishna district.

“The girl’s mother, who is A-2 (Accused No.2) in the case, allegedly abetted the crime. another woman of Paritala village helped the accused by providing accommodation for committing the crime,” said Krishna Superintendent of Police M. Ravindranath Babu.

“Nandigama DSP G.V. Ramana Murthy, who is investigating the Kanchikacharla case, filed the charge-sheet in just 12 days. Trial schedule in the case will begin soon,” the SP said.

Guntur Urban SP P.H.D. Ramakrishna told The Hindu on Sunday that the charge-sheet had been filed in three working days after registering the case, which was a record in the country.

“Trial began in the case on December 27. A sum of ₹9 lakh has been given as compensation to the victim’s family, which included ₹5 lakh from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. Seven officers, who included two DSPs, two CIs and three SIs, worked on the case,” Mr. Ramakrishna said.

Disha Bill

DGP D. Gautam Sawang, who conducted a coordination meeting recently with the line departments, said all measures were being taken to enforce the A.P. Disha Bill within the stipulated time-frame.

Disha Special Officer Kritika Shukla said that 13 Disha Courts and as many Disha Mahila Police Stations, and Disha Centres (One-Stop Centres) and Disha Medical Centres would be set up January 31.

The police said that 830 POCSO cases had been registered in 2016, 1,069 in 2017, 1,229 in 2018 and about 1,080 (up to November end) in 2019 in the State.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 4:58:17 AM |

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