A 25-year-old businessman was found guilty last week by a Mumbai court in the case of State v. Abrar Noor Mohd Khan of sexually assaulting a young girl by referring to her as a “item.” According to special judge SJ Ansari, the phrase objectified women in a sexual sense and would constitute outraging a woman’s modesty in violation of Section 354 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
The businessman was found guilty and given a 1.5-year prison sentence by the Sessions Court judge in Dindoshi, Mumbai, based on the provisions of the Protection of Children under Sexual Offenses (POCSO) Act and Section 354 of the Indian Penal Code. The judge underscored that in order to safeguard women, such offences and inappropriate behaviour must be dealt with harshly.
The accused, who shared a neighbourhood with the youngster, had been arrested in 2015 for taunting her on her way home from school. In the event that resulted in the FIR, the accused approached the girl in 2015, yanked her hair, and asked, “Kya item kidhar ja rahi ho?” (To where are you heading?)
He began verbally abusing the girl after she requested him specifically not to and even claimed that she couldn’t hurt him in any way. While the police arrived quickly after the victim dialled 100 from her mobile device, the accused had already left the scene.
The defendant said in his defence that the girl and he were friends prior to the episode at issue and that the complaint was brought because the girl’s parents did not approve of their friendship. The evidence, according to the Court, is trustworthy and reputable, and it has the appearance of being true.
Furthermore, the accused did not present any evidence to the court that would support her making a false deposition against him. According to the court, the prosecution can be deemed to have established that the accused persistently followed the young girl with the intention of harassing her sexually.
It is true that there is nothing to show the fact of any other crime having been registered against the accused. The fact, however, remains that the prosecution has proved the fact of he having outraged the modesty of a minor girl while she was walking in a lane and of having sexually harassed the said child. …Consequently, there does not arise any question of granting the benefit of probation to the accused or showing unwarranted leniency to himThe Court Stated