Geeta Sharma, a special PAGES since July 2017 for the courts that judge cases Protection of children against Sex crimes law (Little), achieved his 100th conviction on Thursday in the court of sessions in South Mumbai. He has been a prosecutor for more than 200 cases, he says. Since last March, when the confinement began for the Covid-19 pandemic, he has obtained 33 convictions in his cases. His tally includes 18 life sentences, four with a 20-year prison sentence, 16 the convict was sentenced to 10 years in rigorous prison.
Thursday’s conviction was for a crime of kidnapping and the defendant was acquitted of the charge of sexual assault and rape. The victim was a 15-year-old girl who had befriended the 19-year-old defendant on social media. Cases of teenagers as victims and defendants in their 20s abound in court. They easily make up a third of all cases, Sharma says.
Some of the other SPPs for Pocso’s cases in the courtroom in Fort agree that ‘out of control marriages’ cases account for a significant portion of cases and the other category is often abused younger children. By people they know or are familiar with.
The cases that shock even the most prolific prosecutors are those in which the victims are still toddlers or preschoolers. “Neighbors and relatives as defendants are on the rise. 90% of the time in Pocso cases, the defendants are ‘known’ people, of these 50% are relatives or neighbors and 25 to 30% are dating cases, ”said Sharma. “If the age of consent is changed and reduced to 16, the burden of cases would be reduced by 25%,” he says.
“When I see their small faces as we talk about the incident, it is stressful at times. I get angry. I write poetry and stories to vent, ” says Sharma, who started out as a young mother and has three children.