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16 December Gangrape victim’s parents move SC for juvenile’s trial in court

GANG-RAPE

The parents of the victim, who had said the August 31 verdict of the Board was not acceptable to them

GANG-RAPE-sl-21-12-2012New Delhi: Parents of the December 16 gangrape victim have moved the Supreme Court seeking directions to put one of the accused who was then a minor on trial by a criminal court by quashing a law which bans such prosecution of juveniles.

The juvenile, who was six months short of 18 years at the time of incident, was convicted for gangrape and murder of the 23-year-old girl but he got away with a maximum of three years imprisonment mandated under the juvenile law by the Juvenile Justice Board here.

The parents of the victim, who had said the August 31 verdict of the Board was not acceptable to them, filed the petition in the apex court saying since they are challenging the constitutional validity of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2000, there is no other concerned authority to which they can approach for such relief.

Badrinath Singh and his wife Asha Devi, parents of the victim, sought a direction to declare “as unconstitutional and void the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act to the extent it puts a blanket ban on the power of the criminal courts to try a juvenile offender for offences committed under the IPC”.

The petition filed through advocate Aman Hingorani said the juvenile “is liable to be tried and punished by the criminal courts for the aforesaid offences, complete with the judicial discretion on established principles of law regarding the award of sentence keeping in view, amongst other factors, the nature and gravity of the offence”.

They referred to the trial court verdict by which four adult accused were convicted and sentenced to death and sought similar trial for the then juvenile offender, who had now turned major.

“One of the accused (Respondent No 2 (juvenile), however, has not been tried at all for the offences committed under the Indian Penal Code by the criminal court on the premise that he is a juvenile in conflict with law aged 17 years,” the petition said in which the Centre and the accused have been named as respondents.

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