A 28-year-old Mumbai special court teacher has been sentenced to five years of hard labour in prison for molesting young female students.
According to special judge Seema Jadhav’s order on Tuesday, a teacher is supposed to be a protector, and the victims have suffered lifelong “psychological and emotional impact” as a result of the accused’s horrible deeds.
The accused, a teacher at a suburban Govandi school, was found guilty by the court in accordance with the applicable provisions of the Protection of Children From Sexual Offenses (POSCO) Act.
He was charged with sexually abusing three of his younger classmates.
The court stated that the accused is a teacher, “the only career that influences other professions,” rather than a layperson in the detailed order that was made public on Wednesday.
As a result, it is expected of the teacher to provide protection. The victims have suffered lifelong psychological and emotional effects as a result of the accused’s horrific actions, the judge stated.
The teacher has no prior criminal convictions, the court further noted.
The court sentenced him to five years in prison, saying that, in light of the circumstances of the case, the minimum penalty under applicable POCSO Act provisions “would meet the ends of justice”.
In September 2019, the mother of one of the victims filed a police complaint, and the teacher was charged as a result.
The three victims, according to the complaint, were fifth-grade students, and the accused was their teacher.
He is accused of “frequently touching them inappropriately” by the victims.
The victims’ testimony, which is supported by additional witnesses, is not to be disregarded, the court ruled.
It stated that the accused has not presented any credible evidence to support his claim of false implication at the request of another teacher.
“Upon evaluating the testimony of victims and other witnesses, the prosecution has been able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt that the accused has committed non-penetrative sexual assault, as defined in section 7 of the POCSO Act, upon the victims below 12 years repeatedly,” the judge stated.