Kerala

Man arrested for abusing minor girl in cinema hall

In a shocking case of sexual abuse of a minor girl inside a cinema hall at Edappal, the police on Saturday arrested a man from Thrithala.

However, the delayed police action against the accused evoked sharp criticism from different quarters, including the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC).

The child abuse amounting to rape of the minor girl took place during the evening show on April 18 in the darkness of the cinema hall.

Video footage

The night-vision surveillance camera in the theatre captured the video footage of the man, flanked by a middle-aged woman on his right and a minor girl on his left, engaging in sexual acts with both.

The theatre owner, on finding that it was a case of child abuse, approached the Childline on April 25 with the videotape.

The Childline identified the man with the help of the Motor Vehicle Department, and handed over the tape to the police on April 26.

However, the police failed to register any case against the man who abused the girl. The police also did not try to identify the woman and the girl.

Media expose

The police swung into action on Saturday when the media exposed the incident.

A case was registered and the man, Moideen Kutty from Thrithala, was arrested. The police said he had admitted to the crime.

SHRC acting president P. Mohanadas, in an order on Saturday, asked the District Police Superintendent to inquire into the delay in registering the case. The District Police Chief should submit his report in three weeks.

The commission asked the police to register a case against the man and the woman, as the woman was responsible for providing the girl to the man.

The commission found fault with the police for the delay.

Police officers said that as per the visuals, the crime amounted to aggravated sexual offence and would evoke Sections 5 and 6 of the Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

The District Child Protection Unit, Childline, and Child Welfare Committee will involve in providing safety and protection to the girl once the police identified her.

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2020 10:09:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/man-arrested-for-abusingminor-girl-in-cinema-hall/article23866619.ece

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