49-year-old man sentenced to five years for sexually assaulting disabled niece

Relying on the testimony of a sexual assault victim with an intellectual disability – whose testimony was recorded with the assistance of an interpreter – and on the eyewitness testimony of the man’s underage daughter, a court trial sentenced a 49-year-old man to five years’ imprisonment for sexually assaulting his 21-year-old niece.

On October 27, 2016, the five-year-old girl saw her father assault her cousin and informed the victim’s mother. When questioned, the victim, unable to speak, recounted the gesture attack to her mother. Later, the minor also informed her mother of the incident.

The police and the magistrate recorded the victim’s testimony with the help of an interpreter who works with children with intellectual disabilities and is the principal of a school for these children. The victim’s testimony was also recorded in the same way in the courtroom.

The man’s underage daughter had testified against him in court as an eyewitness and his wife had also testified against him in court as the child informed her of the incident.

On Wednesday, additional sessions judge Sanjashree J. Gharat said in his judgment, while deciding on the quantum of the sentence, that the accused is the maternal uncle of the victim and that the victim is intellectually disabled. “The accused being a close relative had the opportunity to visit the victim’s residence. He abused this knowledge and committed the serious act … “

The court considered the seriousness of the offense, adjudicated the sentence and fined the man 20,000 rupees. The man had argued that he was falsely involved because he had a drinking problem and was having an argument with his wife. Refusing to accept his defense, the court declared that it had had the opportunity to see the victim and found her to be intellectually disabled. He added that it is very difficult to help a person with an intellectual disability to solve personal problems between husband and wife.

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Posted on: Saturday December 25, 2021, 8:21 am IST

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