A Delhi court today has awarded life term imprisonment to former BJP MLA Kuldip Singh Sengar in the 2017 rape case of a then minor girl. District Judge Dharmesh Sharma, who had reserved the verdict on quantum of sentence in the forenoon, also imposed a fine of Rs 25 lakh in the case which has to be paid within a month.
“This court does not find any mitigating circumstance. Sengar was a public servant and betrayed people's faith,” the judge said while declining the plea for lenient approach in sentencing him, News 18 reported.
The court has also ordered the CBI to provide the necessary protection to the survivor and her family and to evaluate the threat to the family. It observed that the conduct of Sengar was to intimidate the rape survivor and instructed a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to be paid to the survivor's mother. CBI has also been asked by the court to provide a safe house to the survivor and her family.
The four-time MLA from BJP, Sengar was convicted in the rape case by the Delhi court on Monday under Section 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 5 (c) and 6 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, which pertains to penetrative sexual assault committed against a child by a public servant. The court had also termed the case “an extraordinary one” where the court has to “consider her continued suffering.” While convicting Sengar, the court also noted, “the CBI was able to prove the guilt of Kuldeep Singh Sengar beyond a reasonable doubt.”
The trial, in this case, was heard on a day-to-day basis since August 5 after the Supreme Court directed to transfer the case from Unnao in Uttar Pradesh to Delhi.
It is pertinent to note that Sengar has been named in five cases connected to the rape cases which were transferred from Unnao to New Delhi and he has been convicted in only one case so far. The four other cases comprise of framing of the rape survivor's father in an illegal firearms case and his death in judicial custody, the conspiracy of Sengar with others in an accident case of the rape survivor and a separate case of her alleged gang rape by three others.
The court is conducting a joint-trial in the case of framing of the rape survivor's father in an illegal firearms case and his death in judicial custody. It has framed Sengar and brother Atul Sengar, three ex-UP policemen and six others in this case. While the statements of all accused persons have been recorded in the court, the defence will name all the witnesses on Tuesday.
District Judge Dharmesh Sharma, who had reserved the verdict on quantum of sentence in the forenoon, also imposed a fine of Rs 25 lakh in the case which has to be paid within a month.
In July this year, the survivor along with her two aunts and the lawyer was on her way to Bareilly to see her uncle when her car met with an accident in which both her aunts lost her life. The survivor and her lawyer got critically injured. In an FIR filed by her uncle, he blamed the accident on Sengar as he alleged that he attempted to kill the survivor and her family. However, in the charge sheet filed by the CBI, it has stated that it was a case of an accident and not murder, yet it has named 10 people as accused including Sengar.
In June 2017, Sengar and his accomplices Naresh Tiwari, Brijesh Yadav and Shubham Singh kidnapped and gang-raped the survivor in Unnao. While Sengar has been convicted, the court is yet to commence trial against the others.
Picture credit: Onmanorama