The Madurai District Court on Tuesday sentenced a former government school headmaster to undergo 55 years of imprisonment “consecutively” and pay a fine of ₹12,32,500 in a case of sexual abuse of 20 girl students, six years ago. Five of these girls belong to the Scheduled Castes.
R. Shanmugasundaram, Third Additional District Judge (PCR), sentenced the suspended Pothumbu Government High School Headmaster M. Arokiasamy, 62, to undergo imprisonment of varying terms on different counts. He was charged under Section 354 (outraging modesty of women) and Section 506 (criminal intimidation) of the IPC and under various Sections of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, and the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 1998. Arokiasamy was sentenced to imprisonment for five years each for the sexual abuse committed on the five Scheduled Caste students under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act (total 25 years) and two years each for the other 15 girl students (30 years), amounting to a total of 55 years. The sentence will run consecutively.
Separately, the judge sentenced the accused to imprisonment for three years each for abusing the 20 girls (total 60 years) under the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act. He also awarded 10 years in jail for criminal intimidation. But, these sentences would run concurrent to the cumulative 55-year jail term.