Only 7 Pocso Act convictions in DK in 6 years

Only 7 Pocso Act convictions in DK in 6 years

Additional Deputy Commissioner Vaishali chairs a meeting on child rights protection in Mangaluru on Saturday.

Out of the 433 Pocso Act cases registered in Dakshina Kannada district between 2012 and 2017, the hearing of 44 cases has been completed.

Also, suspects have been acquitted in 37 cases. The accused are punished only in seven cases so far.

This report was revealed during a high-level committee meeting on child rights protection, held under the chairmanship of Additional DC M L Vaishali, on Saturday.

In Dakshina Kannada district police jurisdiction, the hearing of 17 Pocso Act cases have been completed and the suspects are convicted in four cases, while in 13 cases, they have been acquitted. In Mangaluru City Police Commissionerate jurisdiction, the hearing of 27 cases has been completed and only three suspects are convicted.

Out of 433 Pocso Act cases, 314 cases are in various stages of hearing in the court, 56 cases are in various stages of investigation and two cases have been transferred. While six cases have been disposed of, in 11 cases police have submitted ‘B’ report citing no truth in the complaint.

Raising concern over acquittal of suspects in Pocso Act cases, the committee members said there is a need to take stringent measures to provide justice to the victims. The police and the Prosecution Department should be cautious in connection with the Pocso Act cases.

Shortage of building

The committee in the last meeting had discussed on providing a separate building for Pocso special court.

Reacting to it, Mallana Gowda Patil, senior civil judge and member secretary, District Legal Services Authority, said, “There is a lack of building to house a Pocso Special Court separately on the court premises. The issue has already been brought to the notice of the High Court.”

The police informed at the meeting that 188 cases in connection with juvenile cases are pending before the CWC from 2008 to 2018. The final verdicts are awaited in 40 cases, while in 28 cases, the children in conflict with law have failed to appear before the CWC for hearing. As many as 69 cases are at various stages of hearing.

The committee members suggested that the cases booked before CWC should be completed within a time frame.

Prof Hilda Rayappan, Prajna Counselling Centre head, drew the attention of the members to the need for a separate ward for minor children at Wenlock Hospital, to which, the ADC directed the officials to look into the matter.

DK selected

Department of Women and Child Development Deputy Director Sundar Poojary said that Dakshina Kannada has been selected for implementing “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao” programme of the Centre government. The programme aims at bringing equality between men and women and to provide education to girls.

Considering the increase in sex ratio, the district has been selected for implementing the programme. As per 2001 census, the district had 1,022 women for every 1,000 men. During the 2011 census, the district had 1,020 women for every 1,000 men. The sex ratio of children below six has declined from 952 to 947.

The programme includes organising ‘Female Child Day’ in the month of November, distributing incentives of Rs 10,000 to all high schools where all girls have passed in SSLC, 50 girls who have scored highest marks in SSLC and PU will be given incentive of Rs 5,000 each, effective implementation of PNDT Act. An action plan of Rs 50 lakh has been chalked out for the programme.

Zilla Panchayat Standing Committee president Anitha Hemanath Shetty, CWC chairman Renny D’Souza, Child Protection Officer Usman and others were present.