Guj: Man sentenced to death for rape and murder of 11-year-old, deaf-mute cousin

Palanpur (Guj), Apr 27 (PTI) A special POCSO Act court here on Wednesday sentenced a man to death for the rape and murder of his speech-and-hearing impaired cousin in Gujarat’s Banaskantha district in 2020.

The incident had taken place at Dantiwada in the district in October 2020. The victim was only 11 years old.

Additional sessions judge B G Dave awarded death penalty to Nitin Chauhan (25), the accused, the prosecution said.

The accused first raped the victim, who was his cousin, in the kitchen of her house when she was alone, and later decided to kill her fearing that she would disclose the offense to others, said special public prosecutor C G Rajput.

He purchased two knives, took her to an isolated place outside the village on his motorbike, and raped her again before beheading her, the prosecutor said. He then threw away the severed head.

After the gruesome murder came to light, a case was registered at Dantiwada police station under IPC sections 364 (kidnapping), 376 (A)(B) (rape on woman under 12 years of age), 302 (murder) and relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses (POCSO) Act.

Police soon arrested Chauhan. The lawyers affiliated to the local Deesa Bar Council had decided not to defend the accused in the case considering the brutality involved.

The court accepted the prosecution’s argument that he should be given an exemplary punishment of death, Rajput said. PTI COR KA KRK KRK

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