Andhra Pradesh

While Disha Bill was being passed, State witnessed three cases of sexual assault


Incidents reported from Krishna, Guntur and Prakasam districts


On the very day that the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly was passing the A.P. Disha Bill, 2019 and the A.P. Special Courts for Specified Offences against Women and Children Bill, 2019, three sexual assault cases, including two cases falling under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, were reported in the State on Friday.

Legislators cutting across party lines had supported the two Bills, and the Assembly unanimously passed them on Friday, paving the way for quick action against those found guilty of sexual assault against women and children. Ministers and MLAs had voiced their support of the Bills, claiming that they would go a long way towards preventing such crimes in the State.

Watch | How Indian Laws on Sexual Crimes Have Evolved?

However, hopes of Friday’s developments in the Assembly having any significant impact at the ground-level were swiftly dashed as news came in on Saturday about the alleged rape of a five-year-old girl by an Intermediate student in Guntur on Friday. The accused (aged 19 years), said to be a neighbour of the victim, allegedly committed the offence when the girl was playing in the accused’s house.

The Nagarampalem police registered a case under the POCSO Act and arrested the accused on Saturday.

Alleging that the government did not respond quickly in the case, the victim’s family members and women’s organisations gheraoed A.P. Mahila Commission chairperson Vasireddy Padma when she visited the Guntur Government General Hospital to inquire into the incident on Saturday.

In Ongole, a 20-year-old physically-challenged woman was allegedly sexually assaulted by two persons in Rajupalem village in Prakasham district on Friday. Yerragondapalem police booked a case and arrested the accused on Saturday.

In yet another case, a 14-year-old girl was allegedly sexually assaulted by her mother’s boyfriend at Paritala village in Krishna district. Following a complaint lodged by the victim’s grandmother, the Kanchikacherla police registered a case under the POCSO Act and arrested three persons, including the girl’s mother, on Saturday.

“It is quite unfortunate that at a time when the A.P. Disha Bill was being passed in the Assembly, the victim’s family members were in the police station because of the sexual abuse suffered by the minor girl. The case was registered on the same day that the Bill was passed in the Assembly,” a police officer said.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2020 12:06:36 PM |

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