Delhi court sentences 2 men to 20 yrs in jail for raping 5-yr-old

New Delhi, Jan 30 (PTI) A Delhi court Thursday sentenced two men to 20 years in prison for raping a five-year-old girl saying she experienced 'exceptional depravity and extreme brutality'.

Additional Sessions Judge Naresh Kumar Malhotra also granted compensation of Rs 11 lakh to the survivor.

Advocate HS Phoolka, appearing for the survivor, said he will appeal against the order in the high court and seek life imprisonment for the two convicts.

The court had on January 18 convicted Manoj Shah and Pradeep Kumar.

In the gruesome incident at Gandhi Nagar on April 15, 2013, the convicts had shoved objects in the victim's private parts and abandoned her in a room, believing she was dead. The child was rescued 40 hours later on April 17.

In an over 100-page judgment, the court had said: 'In our society, minor girls are worshipped as a goddess on certain occasions, but in the present case, the victim child, who was aged about five years at time of incident, had experienced exceptional depravity and extreme brutality.' 'The crime against the victim was committed in a most grotesque and revolting manner and the collective conscience of the community was shaken,' the court had said.

The incident had taken place four months after another gruesome gang rape and murder of a 23-year-old paramedic student, who came to be known as Nirbhaya.

The court had convicted Shah and Kumar under sections 363 (kidnapping), 342 (wrongful confinement), 201 (disappearance of evidence), 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 376 (2) (gang rape), 377 (unnatural offence) and 34 of the Indian Penal Code and Section 6 (aggravated penetrative sexual assault) of the POCSO Act.

Shah and Kumar were arrested from Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga in Bihar on April 20 and April 22 in 2013, respectively.

The police had said some foreign materials -- three pieces of a candle and one hair oil bottle -- were taken out from the body of the victim, which was also proved by doctors during recording of their statements in the court. The girl had undergone multiple surgeries at the AIIMS in Delhi.

Anger over the incident had spilled onto Delhi's streets as outraged students and women staged demonstrations at the India Gate, police headquarters and near the residences of then prime minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

Singh had said a collective effort was needed to root out such 'depravity' from society.

In 2014, Kumar moved the court claiming he was a juvenile at the time of his arrest.

The trial court took three years to decide his application of juvenility and transferred the case in April 2017 to the Juvenile Justice Board, which granted him bail in June.

Following this, the mother of the rape survivor moved the Delhi High Court against the trial court's order declaring Kumar to be a juvenile. The high court in 2018 declared that he was not a juvenile and sent him to trial before the sessions court. PTI URD LLP SA