A Delhi court has sentenced a man here to five years in jail for sexually assaulting his seven-year-old daughter, born out of his live-in relationship. Additional sessions judge Pawan Kumar Jain awarded the jail term to the Timarpur resident, after holding him guilty under provisions of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and the IPC. The court said being her father, it was the man's duty to protect the child but he chose her to satisfy his lust.
"No doubt, the convict is the father of the victim who was just seven years old at the time of incident. Being the father of the victim, it was the duty of the convict to protect her from any such incident but he himself chose the victim to satisfy his lust. The convict not only committed an offence as provided under the POCSO Act, but he had also betrayed the faith of the victim which she had posed in him being her father," the court said.
It also held him guilty of threatening the child by asking her not to disclose the incident to anyone and imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on the man.
According to the prosecution, the man and the girl's mother were living together for the past 14 years, but they had not married each other. Four children including the victim were born out of their live-in relationship. In 2012, the woman, along with her children, went to her parents' house after being beaten up by her live-in partner. And a few days before the incident in November, 2012, the man took the children to his house, the prosecution said. When the girl returned, she asked her mother not to send her to her father's house, and on being asked why, she disclosed that the man had sexually assaulted her during her stay there, the prosecution said. The woman then lodged a complaint with the police.
During the trial, the man claimed that he had been falsely implicated in the case by the woman. The court convicted him saying it became abundantly clear that the man had sexually assaulted the girl, who was not only below 12 years of age at the time of incident but was also his blood relation. It, however, did not award the maximum sentence of seven years prescribed for the offence of aggravated sexual assault, saying that the minor stayed with her father for five nights and except one night when he assaulted her, he kept her properly during the rest of the time.
"It is also an established fact that the victim had stayed with the convict for about five nights, and he had treated her properly during the said period except on one night when the said incident had taken place. This is one of the substantial mitigating factor in favour of the convict. In view of the said mitigating factor, I am of the view that it is not a fit case to award maximum sentence as prayed by prosecution," the judge said.