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Homechevron_rightIndiachevron_right"POCSO Act's intent is...

"POCSO Act's intent is not to punish teens in love": Karnataka HC quashes case against minor boy

POCSO Acts intent is not to punish teens in love: Karnataka HC quashes case against minor boy

Taking note that the intent of the Protection of Children against Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012, is not to prosecute teenagers who fall in love, the Karnataka High Court on Monday dismissed a POCSO case against a 16-year-old boy who eloped with a 16-year-old girl.

The High Court dismissed the case against the boy who was a minor at the time of the complaint, stating that the POCSO Act cannot be invoked, and calling it an instance of "romantic love between a boy and a girl of the age of adolescence."

The HC found that the two minors had indulged in sexual acts but it would not amount to a crime as envisioned under POCSO Act.

Justice M Nagaprasanna quashed the proceedings pending in a lower court against the boy and allowed a compromise settlement between the families of two minors who had engaged in a sexual act leading to the boy being charged under the POCSO Act.

Justice Nagaprasanna, however, added a caveat and said the court "is not painting every incidence of sexual activity of any kind that would become an offence under the POCSO Act, with the same brush, but there are cases of the kind, like the one at hand, where the adolescents have indulged in such acts due to lack of knowledge of consequence of law".

As per reports, the boy and girl, who were classmates, had reportedly eloped. After the complaint was filed, they were found together in another district. The boy was charged with rape under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and under Section 5 of the POCSO Act.

The High Court was recently approached to quash the case while the case was pending in a lower court.

While the lower court proceedings were quashed, the HC pointed out that youngsters are not aware of POCSO. "The act has been done in the frenzy of youth, owing to human curiosity coupled with biological cravings. These acts are entirely different from those which become offenses under Section 5, which deals with aggravated penetrative sexual assault. These provisions are not known to students, who are themselves, minors and get infatuated," it said.

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TAGS:POCSO Act karnataka hc 
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