Friday, August 2, 2013

Court upholds life term for rapist dad (New Delhi, India)

The rapist dad is identified as SANT RAM.

Delhi: High court upholds life term of rapist father
Harish V Nair, Hindustan Times New Delhi, August 01, 2013
First Published: 00:25 IST(1/8/2013) | Last Updated: 00:26 IST(1/8/2013)

The Delhi high court on Wednesday upheld the life sentence awarded to a man three years ago by a trial court for raping his own minor daughter. Delivering the order, the court said the ‘ghastly act’ had “shaken the faith of children in their own parents”.

The 16-year-old girl became pregnant after the incident and delivered a child.

“The convict’s lawyer has failed in establishing his innocence. On the other hand, it is established that the appellant, who is father of the victim and the protector of his daughter himself, betrayed her trust. The act committed by the appellant has shaken the faith of children in their own parents,” said a bench of justices GP Mittal and GS Sistani, dismissing the appeal filed by Sant Ram.

The accused in his defence said that the act was “consensual” and “it could be proved from the fact that the girl had not complained.

He argued that the “incident came to light only when her mother noticed after she became pregnant and filed a rape complaint”.

However, the court rejected the argument, saying :”Keeping in view the evidence produced coupled with the victim’s age, her mere submission to the barbaric lust of her father cannot be said to be voluntary participation in the act and consensual in nature”.

While sentencing Ram to life imprisonment on April 22, 2010, the trial court had also imposed a fine of Rs. 2 lakh on him with a direction that Rs. 1 lakh each would be given to the victim, who is already married, as well as the child.

The court said the existing laws in India are highly inadequate in dealing with cases related to incest by close relatives, particularly where the father is the perpetrator of this brutality.

“Instances are not rare in India of people taking the law into their own hands. Incest offences in many cases often end up in honour killings in our society. It is time to wake up to this situation and acknowledge the existence of incest in our Indian society before it is too late,” the court said.