Madras HC commutes death penalty awarded to man in POCSO case to 30-year jail term

The judges pointed out that the boy died nearly 19 days after the incident due to septicemia, which is a life-threatening infection that occurs when bacteria enter the bloodstream and spread.

Published: 04th December 2021 05:25 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th December 2021 05:25 AM   |  A+A-

POCSO, Sexual Assault

Image for representational purpose only. ( Express Illustration)

By Express News Service

MADURAI/TIRUCHY: The Madurai Bench of Madras High Court on Friday commuted the death penalty awarded to a man by a Pudukkottai court, for sexually assaulting and murdering a 17-year-old boy of unsound mind in 2019, to 30 years of rigorous imprisonment.

Observing that the man’s intention of causing injuries to the boy, which included inserting a stalk into the boy’s anus, was “not to cause death but to satisfy his lust”, a Division Bench of Justices S Vaidyanathan and G Jayachandran modified the trial court’s order by convicting Gujarat-native Danish Patel (34) from Gujarat for ‘culpable homicide not amounting to murder’, instead of ‘murder’.

The judges pointed out that the boy died nearly 19 days after the incident due to septicemia, which is a life-threatening infection that occurs when bacteria enter the bloodstream and spread. Stating that such an injury is not likely to cause death per se, but for the infection caused, the judges held, “The prosecution failed to prove that the accused caused that particular injury with intention to cause death.”

Hence the death of the victim would fall under the definition of ‘culpable homicide not amounting to murder’ and deserve punishment under Section 304 (ii) of IPC, they opined.  They modified the trial court’s order and awarded 20 years rigorous imprisonment for the offences under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, and 10 years rigorous imprisonment for the IPC offences and added that the sentences should run consecutively (one after the other).

Danish Patel was working as an excavator operator in a crusher company in Pudukkottai when the crime occurred. According to the prosecution, on December 18, 2019, Patel abducted a 17-year-old boy of unsound mind to an isolated area and committed aggravated penetrative sexual assault on him.  “The postmortem examination further revealed that the man had also inserted ‘thuvarai stalk’ into the boy’s anus; the resultant injury later caused septicemia,” the prosecution had said.

School correspondent held
A government-aided school correspondent in Tiruchy was arrested for allegedly sexual assaulting a  girl. The wife of the correspondent, who works in the same school, was also been arrested for reportedly trying to cover up the incident.

The accused were identified as James (52) and Stella Mary, both working at CE Government-aided Higher Secondary School at Puthur. James allegedly tried to misbehave with the girl when she was alone at the school hostel during Deepavali holidays.

According to police, the victim had reportedly complained to Stella Mary, who allegedly tried to cover up the incident. The incident came to light after an information passed on to  Karthikeyan, Tiruchy City Police Commissioner. 

Based on his instruction, an inquiry was conducted by the Srirangam AWPS on Friday morning and both the accused were arrested.

Teacher suspended for ‘sexual remarks’
Karur: A 48-year-old government school teacher in Karur was suspended for allegedly making sexual remarks in class. The action by Karur Chief Educational Officer follows complaints against Pannerselvam, who was teaching science at Paganatham panchayat union middle school in Thanthonimalai. Unit 20 in the textbook for Class 8 deals about adolescence and reproductive system. Pannerselvam had allegedly made the remarks while taking the chapter and spoke in a manner that aroused sexual feelings. Also, he had skipped a few chapters in order to teach Unit 20. Based on the complaint, the CEO suspended Pannerselvam on Thursday. 


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