Earlier this week, special judge S J Gharat convicted Virendra Tufani, under relevant provisions of the Indian Penal Code and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
According to the prosecution, when the victim’s mother returned home from work on February 24, 2018, she found the 15-year-old missing and lodged a complaint with Nirmal Nagar police station.
However, three days later, the girl turned up at the police station along with the accused.
In her deposition, the victim told the court that the accused had come to her house in her mother’s absence and offered her chocolate, after which she lost sense of what was happening.
The victim claimed that the accused took her to a temple in Palghar, where he forcibly put ‘sindoor’ on her and later sexually assaulted her for three days.
The defence had argued that the girl had eloped with the accused and their relationship had been consensual.
The court rejected this argument and held Tufani guilty on the basis of the victim’s testimony, which was supported by medical evidence.