The Gauhati High Court has stayed an order passed by a lower court in Arunachal Pradesh on June 3 to hand over a minor rape victim to a relative of the accused.
The high court, while taking a suo motu cognizance of the case, stayed the June 3 order of the sessions court at Tezu in Arunachal Pradesh. The sessions court in its order had asked the Child Care Institute (CCI) in Roing to hand over the girl to the sister-in-law of the accused person.
The girl, originally hails from Nepal, was working as a domestic help at the house of one Aka Kalung in Roing, the district headquarters of Arunachal Pradesh’s Lower Dibang Valley district.
She was reported missing on March 2. Later, she shared the ordeal with a family, who gave her shelter. Later, the family informed the district Child Welfare Committee, which put her at the CCI. The case took a turn when she told the police that she had been subjected to sexual abuse by Kalung.
The accused was absconding before police caught him and filed a chargesheet against him on April 20. He was granted bail later.
The high court directed that the child be kept in the custody of the CCI in Roing till the next date of hearing and pointed out that the proceedings before the special POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) court in Tezu against the accused shall continue.
The Lower Dibang Valley superintendent of police has been directed by the high court to provide protection to the victim at the Roing CCI and restrain the visiting rights of the accused, his relatives, and the girl’s father. However, an exception was granted for the girl’s mother.
The director of health services in Arunachal Pradesh has been directed to make an inquiry to ascertain the age of the victim by way of a bone ossification test.