CHENNAI: The Supreme Court on Thursday set aside conviction of a man under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act, 2012 taking into account his married life with the prosecutrix.
A Pocso case was filed against man for having sexual relationship with the prosecutrix on 2012 by promising to marry her, which he did. The prosecutrix was 14 years old when the incident happened. She then gave birth to the first child when she was 15 years old and second when she was 17 years old.
The appellant's conviction under sections Sections 5(j)(ii)read with Section 6, 5(I) read with Section 6 and 5(n) read with Section 6 of Protection of Child from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act, 2012, was ordered by the Fast Track Mahila Court in Tirupur on 31/10/2018. The conviction was upheld by the Madras High Court on 13/02/2019. Under the said sections the appellant was ordered to undergo a 10-year sentence.
Upon him appealing to the Apex Court, it directed the district court to gather information of the prosecutrix's present condition. She expressed satisfaction with the marriage with the appellant, and she said their two children are taken good care by the appellant.
Taking cognisance of her present condition, the Supreme Court observed that, "The Court cannot shut its eyes to the ground reality and disturb the happy family life of the appellant and the prosecutrix". The top court, chaired Justices BR Gavai and Nageswar Rao, set aside the appellant's conviction and put the quietus on doubts whether the appellant is using the marriage as an escape from punishment, saying the prosecutrix can approach the court for the modification of the order in case the appellant doesn't take care of her.