Published: 06th January 2021
Walayar minor rape case: Kerala HC set aside the acquittal of accused, orders retrial
In October 2019, a special POCSO court had acquitted the accused in the case — V Madhu, M Madhu, Shibu and Pradeep Kumar, causing a lot of hue and cry in the state
The Kerala High Court on Wednesday set aside the acquittal of all the accused in the sexual assault and death of two minor girls in Walayar. The appeal was moved by the Kerala Government and the children's parents. The court has also called for a retrial of the case.
In October 2019, a special POCSO court had acquitted the accused in the case — V Madhu, M Madhu, Shibu and Pradeep Kumar, causing a lot of hue and cry in the state. Pradeep was found dead in his house last year, in a case of suspected suicide. The incident had occurred in 2017, when the sisters aged nine and 13, were found hanging inside their house, 52 days apart. The post-Mortem had confirmed that the duo was subject to sexual assault.
"The sob story (that) unfolded from the records in these cases utterly shock our conscience. It ought to have been so for the investigator, the prosecutor and the trial court too," observed the High Court Bench that heard the case. The bench comprised of Justices A Hariprasad and MR Anita. "Police conducting a probe into heinous crimes should be scrupulously honest and committed to their duties and responsibilities. Level of integrity expected of the police officers probing into the offences against women and children, especially under the POCSO Act, are very high," it noted.
"We are disheartened to note the manner in which the Special Judge conducted the trial. He failed to perform a proactive role at the time of taking evidence," observed the court.