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Rape of minors : Convict should be mercilessly punished

Persons accused of sexual offences against minor victims should be “mercilessly and inexorably punished”, the Bombay High Court said while upholding the conviction of a 29-year-old man for raping a five-year-old girl.

A single bench of Justice Prithviraj Chavan on Friday dismissed an appeal filed by Sagar Dhuri, challenging a special court order of June 2018 convicting him for sexually assaulting the victim and sentencing him to ten years in jail.

“The dicta is loud and clear as to how such offences are required to be dealt with. Such persons are a menace to the civilized society and, therefore, they should be mercilessly and inexorably punished,” the court said.

“This is a case in which there is no question of reformation of the appellant as he was quite a grown up male who knew the consequences of his act,” Justice Chavan noted.

According to the prosecution, Dhuri, who used to live in the same neighbourhood as the victim in Thane district, called the girl to his house in April 2015 under the pretext of showing her songs on his mobile phone and sexually assaulted her.

The victim’s friend, who was looking for her to play with, found her in the convict’s house and informed a woman residing in the neighbourhood.

The woman peeped through a hole on the convict’s door and found the girl lying down and the convict on top of her following which she called the victim out and took her to her mother and narrated the incident.

A police complaint was then lodged and the accused was taken into custody.

The high court, while upholding Dhuri’s conviction and sentence, relied on the statements of witnesses and also the evidence given by the victim.

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