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Madras High Court directs State Judicial Academy to train judges and officers dealing with POCSO Act

Madras High Court directs State Judicial Academy to train judges and officers dealing with POCSO Act

By Shrey Garg

The Madras High Court in the case of Renold Mike Tyson v. State Rep. by The Inspector of Police, Town Police Station, the court has ordered the judicial academy of the state to train all the stakeholders dealing with cases under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) including the special judge, investigating officer and public prosecutor.

The single bench of Justice P Velmurugan was adjudicating on a criminal appeal which was challenging the conviction order dated 25.11. 2019 passed by special judge under Section 4 of the POCSO Act.

The Special Court Judge ordered the accused to serve the remaining sentence of rigorous imprisonment and also directed the Taluk Legal Services Authority to pay compensation to the victim child of not less than Rs. 4 lakhs.

The appellant in this case argued that the victim girl has not levelled any allegations against him and has also not registered complaint against him.

The court said that even if the girl had given consent for the act, it is immaterial as she was a child under the definition of Sectoon 2(1) of the POCSO Act.Hence, the appelant’s act comes under the definition of aggravated penetrative sexual assault under Section 5(1) which is punishable under Section 6 of the POCSO Act.

He further argued that there were inconsistencies in the statements given by the victim to the Magistrate under 164 CrPC and the statement given to the doctor at the time of medical examination.

The prosecution on the other hand argued that the victim who is 16 years of age has clearly said that the accused has sexually assaulted her and this attracts the sections under POSCO Act.

The court after hearing the arguments from both sides clarified that since the victim is 16 years in age it cannot be expected from the prosecution to furnish independent witnesses as evidence and the statement given by the victim would suffice if its trustworthy. The court further added that the capacity of a 16-year-old cannot be equated with that of an 18-year-old and therefore her consent to intercourse is material and such a matter should be dealt under Section 6 of the POSCO Act.

The court dismissed the appeal and ordered the appellant to pay 5 lakh rupees, as compensation to the victim.

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