The Delhi High Court recently granted bail to a 23-year-old man in a POCSO Act case arising from a “consensual physical relationship” with a girl who was minor at the time of the incident, observing that putting him in the “company of hardened criminals will do more harm than good to him”.
A single-judge bench of Justice Vikas Mahajan, in its July 28 order, observed: “The petitioner…is already in custody since 15.10.2021. Keeping the petitioner in jail will not serve any useful purpose…”
Hearing a bail plea moved by the man, the HC said it cannot be overlooked that the girl, who was 17.5 years old at the time of the incident, was of “sufficient maturity and intellectual capacity”.
The HC, thereafter, granted bail to the man on a personal bond of Rs 20,000 and a surety bond in the like amount subject to certain conditions.
In the case, the FIR was registered at the instance of the girl alleging that the man established physical relationship with her on the pretext of marriage. In the order, the HC noted that it “appeared” from the girl’s statement recorded under the Code of Criminal Procedure that she never wanted to get the case registered against the man. “However, it seems that the present FIR has been lodged…at the insistence of her family who were perhaps embarrassed after the discovery of prosecutrix’s pregnancy, which had surpassed the stage of its termination,” Justice Mahajan said.
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