A Delhi Court said that token sentences, in the case of sexual abuse is not fit as a punishment, even if the accused is an aged person.
While dealing with a case of a six-year-old girl, who was molested by her 61-year-old neighbour, the court said that old age is no ground for token sentence in sexual offence cases.
The judges said that old age and clean antecedents can at the most be considered for lessening the punishment but not a ground to allow a convict walk free after serving a token punishment like sentenced till the rising of the court or the end of the day’s working hours.
“No doubt, the old age and clean antecedents of the appellant are relevant factors to determine the quantum of sentence, but considering the fact that the appellant had outraged the modesty of a minor child, I am of the considered opinion that the plea is not sufficient to impose the token sentence, but certainly relevant to reduce the sentence,” additional Sessions Judge Pawan Kumar Jain said.
However, as the hearing proceeded, the court reduced the accused’s sentence from two years to six months of rigorous imprisonment considering the fact that the convict had been facing trial for seven years. It also directed him to pay Rs 30,000 to the child.