Ends Of Justice Would Be Met: Supreme Court Reduces Sentence Of POCSO Convict
The Supreme Court reduced the period of imprisonment of man who was convicted under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (POCSO) saying that the ends of justice would be met.
The Court was deciding a criminal appeal filed by a man against the judgment of the Madras High Court by which he was convicted under Section 3(a) read with Section 4 of the POCSO Act.
The two-Judge Bench of Justice Vikram Nath and Justice Satish Chandra Sharma said, “Having heard the Learned Counsel for the parties and considering the totality of the circumstances of the case, we are of the view that the ends of justice would be met if the period of imprisonment awarded against the Appellant is reduced to the period already undergone by him. Accordingly, the appeal is allowed in part. The conviction of the Appellant u/s. u/S. 3(a) r/w Sec. 4 of the POCSO Act, 2012 is hereby confirmed.”
Advocate B Karunakaran appeared on behalf of the appellant while none appeared on behalf of the respondent.
In this case, the Apex Court had earlier issued notice only on the quantum of sentence awarded to the convict. Therefore, only that limited question was required to be considered by the Court. Vide the judgement of the Sessions Court, the convict was sentenced to undergo ten years rigorous imprisonment along with a fine of Rs. 5,000 with a default clause to undergo simple imprisonment for three months. The State Government was also directed to pay Rs. 1,00,000 to the victim as compensation under Rule 7(2) of the POCSO Rules, 2012. The sentence imposed by the Sessions Court was confirmed by the High Court without any modification.
The Supreme Court in the above regard observed, “Learned Counsel for the Appellant submits that at the time of conviction, the minimum sentence prescribed u/Sec. 4 of the POCSO Act was seven years and as on date, the Appellant has already served more than seven years of his sentence. It is also submitted that the Appellant is providing for the day-to-day expenses of the victim and her child and therefore, further imprisonment will impact not only his family but also the victim’s. On these grounds, Learned Counsel presses for leniency.”
Accordingly, the Court partly allowed the appeal, confirmed the conviction of the appellant, and reduced the sentence.
Cause Title- Rajasekar v. The State Rep. by the Inspector of Police (Neutral Citation: 2024 INSC 96)
Appellant: Advocates B Karunakaran, K Balambihai, Ajith Williyam S, V M Eashwar, and AOR S. Gowthaman.