Sumbal Minor’s Rape: HC Seeks Police Probe Status By Tomorrow

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SRINAGAR — Observing that sexual violence is not confined to any particular culture, class, religion, age or geographical location, the J&K High Court on Wednesday directed Inspector General of Police (Kashmir Zone) to file by Friday a status report of the investigation into rape case of a three-year-old girl in Malikpora Sumbal.

Taking took suo-moto cognisance of the media reports, a division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Tashi Rabstan also directed Secretary Department of Health and Medical Education department to indicate by same time steps taken regarding medical examination, treatment and counselling being administered to the victim.  

It also directed J&K State Legal Services Authority through its Member Secretary High Court to file a report regarding the status of effective legal aid granted to the victim as well as the status of the release of compensation admissible to the victim.  

A three-year-old girl was allegedly raped last week by her neighbour, leading to widespread outrage and protests against the incident.

The accused has been arrested by police and a special investigation team constituted for a speedy investigation of the incident.

The court underlined that in cases of sexual violence, critical requirements of sensitive medical examination, treatment and counselling of the traumatised victim must be ensured. “Adequate provision of these facilities is the responsibility of the medical authorities of the State.”

The court observed that the incident at hand is not the first incident of sexual violence in the State.

“Sexual violence unfortunately is endemic to human beings and is not confined to any particular culture, class, religion, age or geographical location. While legislations have attempted to take a strict view of the matter and provide stringent punishments for sexual violence, however, it is increasingly being found that even youngsters are being implicated, some of them unwittingly rendering themselves liable under penal laws being ignorant and unaware of the consequences of their acts or omissions,” the court observed.

The manner and nature of reporting of the alleged offence in the media, the court said, is in absolute violation of specific statutory prohibitions against disclosure of identity of the victim especially in respect of a minor victim.

The court appointed government advocate Ms Farah Bashir as amicus curie and asked her to give details of the reports regarding the incident of May 8 which have been published in print and electronic media which may be violation of section 23 of J&K Protection of Children from sexual violence ordinance 2018. “We shall proceed in respect of such reports upon receiving the list and copies of the reports,” the court said and posted it on May 17


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