Udupi: Youth sentenced to 20 years of rigorous imprisonment in POCSO case


Team Udayavani, Feb 23, 2024, 11:13 AM IST

Udupi: The Udupi Additional POCSO Court on Thursday convicted an accused and ordered him to undergo 20 years of rigorous imprisonment in the case of sexually assaulting a minor, and impregnating her.

The convict has been identified as Prashant Poojari (25), a resident of Byndoor Hallihole. Prashant Poojari, who worked as a bus conductor, knew the victim. In July 2022, he took the victim girl forcefully to a temple on his bike, and from there, he took her to his house where he sexually assaulted her.

The case came to light when the girl developed health issues and it was revealed at the hospital that she had been pregnant. Accordingly, a case was registered in the Kundapura police station as per the complaint filed by the aggrieved girl’s grandmother. The then Kundapur Circle Inspector Mahabaleshwar investigated and filed a charge sheet against the accused.

The girl later gave birth to a boy and a DNA investigation later conducted established the accused as the father of the child.

Out of 20 witnesses, 13 witnesses were examined by the court.  The court also took into account that another POCSO case was registered against the accused.

Based on the testimony of the victim and evidence, the court held Prashant guilty as charged.

Taking into account all these matters, Additional POCSO Court District Judge Shrinivas Suvarna sentenced the accused to 3 years rigorous imprisonment and a Rs 5,000 fine for forcibly taking the victim girl against her will;  10 years rigorous imprisonment and a Rs 10,000 fine for rape; and 20 years imprisonment and a fine of Rs 20,000 for impregnating the minor girl.

Of the fines collected, the court directed that Rs 25,000 be paid to the aggrieved girl and Rs 10,000 to the government. Further, the court also ordered the government to pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to the victim.

Special public prosecutor YT Raghavendra argued on behalf of the State.

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