pocso act: ‘Oral sex with minor not aggravated assault’: HC cuts convict’s time in jail | India News

PRAYAGRAJ: The Allahabad high court has held that oral sex with a minor amounts to “penetrative sexual assault” under Section 4 of the Pocso Act, but can’t be treated as “aggravated penetrative sexual assault” that invites stricter punishment under Section 6 of the same law. In making this observation, the court reduced the jail term of a man convicted of forcing oral sex on a child from 10 to seven years.
Hearing the appeal filed by Sonu Kushwaha, who was convicted by a Jhansi court, the single-judge bench of Justice Anil Kumar Ojha said, “After going through the records and provisions of the Pocso Act, I am of the considered opinion that the appellant should be punished under Section 4…because the act done by the appellant falls in the category of penetrative sexual assault.”
Kushwaha had offered Rs 20 to the survivor to keep quiet. He threatened the child with dire consequences if anyone came to know about what happened. The trial court pronounced him guilty of aggravated sexual assault, as defined by Section 5 of the Pocso Act, and sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
The high court ruled that the offence couldn’t be categorised under sections 5 and 6 of the legislation as the act of oral sex was not “aggravated penetrative sexual assault”, as defined by the law. It said the quantum of punishment should, therefore, be determined by Section 4 of the act rather than Section 6.

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