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Delhi HC slams trial court for acquitting accused in minor rape case

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“We are aghast at the manner in which the trial court has dealt with this case,” said the Delhi High Court while expressing its displeasure at a judgment acquitting the accused in the rape of a minor girl.  

The bench comprising Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rajnish Bhatnagar said irrespective of whether she (victim) is right in her conclusion with regard to the guilt or innocence of the accused, we have a serious reservation with regard to the manner in which the trial court has proceeded to deal with the evidence in this case. 

It further said that the Additional Sessions Judge had exhibited no application of mind. The Court has asked the Additional Sessions Judge concerned to send to the High Court all her judgments that she may have rendered while handling her assignment as a POCSO Court.

The Delhi High Court passed the order in a leave petition against the order of a trial court which acquitted the rape accused. The accused was charged for rape of a minor and a case was registered under Section 506 IPC and Section 6 of POCSO Act.

Pointing out that the order of the Trial Court was “all of 7-and-a-half pages”, the bench observed:

We are aghast at the manner in which the trial court has dealt with this case. Irrespective of whether she is right in her conclusion with regard to the guilt or innocence of the accused, we have serious reservation with regard to the manner in which the trial court has proceeded to deal with the evidence in this case. In fact, it has not dealt with the evidence. The purpose of writing a judgment by the trial court is to render a judgment which should be comprehensive and should display application of mind – as a trial court, to the evidence in the case in the light of the prevailing law.”

The bench, further pointing out faults in the judgment of the trial court, said, “The trial court has taken note of in para 3, the charge framed against the accused. Para 4 enlists the admission/denial of documents under Section 294 Cr.P.C. Para 5 records that in view of admissions, the requirement of evidence of the witnesses was dispensed with. It goes on to enlist some of those witnesses. Paras 6 to 9 talk about the three prosecution witnesses, including P-1 complainant/victim, and P-2 and P-3, the two eye witnesses. Para 14 records that the two eye witnesses to the incident deny having witnessed the offence, however, they stated that they were playing on the roof of the accused at the time of the incident. Upon hearing the ruckus, they rushed down and saw the victims elder sister shouting and accused was locked inside. They did not see the minor victim „P there. They stated that they were under a lot of pressure when they made their statement under Section 164 Cr.P.CPara 15 records that the FSL report confirms that the condom was recovered from the bedroom of the accused which had DNA of the accused. The trial court, however, records “there was, however, nothing in the testimony of the victim that would connect this condom with the offence alleged against him.” However, the statement of the victim has not been either reproduced or dealt with.”

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However, Advocate Ashish Dutta,  APP for the State, specifically referred to the MLC of the victim which contains the history and also refers to the use of condoms by the accused. He also referred to the rukka on the basis of which the FIR came to be registered, which also makes a reference to the use of condoms by the accused.

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