Published on: September 22, 2022 at 20:38 IST
Afzal, a 26-year-old carpenter, was given a 5-year prison term by an Uttar Pradesh court this Thursday in accordance with the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Convention of Religion Act, 2021. (Anti-Love Jihad Act).
Kapila Raghav, the Additional District Judge (POSCO Court), Amroha, observed that the prosecution had proved its case that the accused (Afzal) concealed his reality regarding his name and religion, lured the minor victim, took her away from her father’s legal guardianship to Delhi for the purpose of marrying, after converting her religion against her will.
The court further stated that it had been established that the youngster had been sexually assaulted in order to coerce her into changing her religion and had been threatened with death if she had refused.
The victim’s statement was taken into consideration by the court, and it was further noted that throughout both her main and cross examinations, the victim accused the accused of lying about his faith in order to engage in illicit sexual activity or get married to her.
He claimed to be a follower of Lord Shiva and to practise Hinduism; afterwards, he coerced her into changing her religion, abducted her, and sexually raped her.
The victim’s evidence is natural and convincing, thus the court concluded that there was no reason to doubt it and that it was trustworthy enough to result in a conviction based solely on her testimony.
The court observed as it convicted the accused under Sections 363, 366, 506, IPC, 7/8 POCSO Act and 3/5(1) of the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion Of Religion Act.
“The act of sexual assault, molestation ahs been committed by the accused with the victim, it is a heinous act, which sends a wrong message to the common man and such criminals make it difficult for women and girls to come out in the street,”