Mumbai: A special court in Mumbai has sentenced an octogenarian couple to ten years of rigorous imprisonment in a 2013 case of sexually assaulting a four-year-old girl, who lived in their neighbourhood in Mumbai’s Girgaon. The court convicted the couple under Section 6 (aggravated penetrative sexual assault) of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
The special POCSO court, presided over by judge Rekha Pandhare, also imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on them. The court relied on the testimony of the girl, her mother and others, along with other oral evidence that was supported by the medical report. The judge observed that the accused, being the age of the girl’s grandparents, were supposed to take care of her. Instead, they sexually assaulted her, Pandhare said.
The police said the incident took place on September 4, 2013, when the girl was returning from her friend’s house. The accused, whom she referred to as “dada and dadi [grandmother and grandfather]”, called her on her way. The child said when she went to the man, he carried her and took her into the house. Later when she tried to leave, the man slapped her. The police said that the child alleged that while the woman held her, the man undressed her before sexually assaulting her. The woman repeated the act.
The girl said that when she tried to run, the man spat on her face, according to the police. The child said she was afraid and after the accused let her go, she dressed up and ran back home. The girl’s mother told the police that her daughter informed her about the incident later in the day when she came back from work.
The mother said she checked her daughter’s private parts and found inflammation. She then told her husband, and complained to police. The accused were arrested the next day. They were out on bail at the time of the hearing of the case on Thursday.