Home / India / Child welfare panel demands action under POCSO in killing of Dumka girl

Child welfare panel demands action under POCSO in killing of Dumka girl

Victim not 19, she was born on November 26, 2016 as per her class 10 board examination marksheet
Representational image.
Representational image.

Our Web Desk   |   Ranchi, Dumka   |   Published 30.08.22, 11:00 AM

The Child Welfare Committee (CWC) in Jharkhand's Dumka district has said that the class 12 student who died days after being set on fire by a man was a minor, and demanded action against him under the POCSO Act.

The committee said she was around 16 years old as per the class 10 board examination marksheet and not an adult as claimed by the police. The Dumka CWC's recommendation comes amid the National Commission of Women (NCW) seeking an action taken report from police on the progress of investigations into the heinous crime. 

The incident happened in Dumka town on August 23 when the accused allegedly poured petrol on the girl from outside the window of her room when she was sleeping and set her on fire. The teenager, who apparently did not reciprocate his overtures angering him, succumbed to her injuries on Sunday.

"We recommend that sections of the POCSO Act be added to the FIR as the girl was a minor as per our probe," Dumka CWC chairperson Amarendra Kumar told PTI on Monday.

A four-member CWC team led by Kumar met the victim's family on Monday and procured her marksheet. "According to her marksheet, she was born on November 26, 2006 she was a minor. So, sections under the POCSO Act are applicable in this case," he added.

The accused has ben arrested. Another person, who allegedly supplied petrol to the main accused, has also been arrested.

Earlier, Dumka Police had claimed that the deceased had mentioned that she was 19 years old in the statement given before the magistrate.

The National Commission for Women on Monday said it has written to the Jharkhand Police chief, calling for a fair investigation into the death of the woman.

The Director General of Police has been directed to submit an early report on the progress of the investigation, which should be conducted by ADG rank officer, Chief Minister Hemant Soren said in a Twitter post. The NCW wants the report from the police within seven days.

The chief minister said the case will be taken up by a fast-track court for speedy disposal.

Protests against the incident has erupted in Ranchi and Dumka on Monday.

"The incident happened took place in Dumka district on August 23. The accused, identified as Shahrukh, allegedly poured petrol on the girl from outside the window of her room when she was sleeping and set her on fire," according to a police officer in Ranchi.

The woman, who was undergoing treatment at Ranchi's Rajendra Institute of Medical Science (RIMS), died in the early hours of Sunday.

"The National Commission for Women has come across media reports wherein a woman was set on fire in Jharkhand's Dumka after she rejected the accused's proposal...

"The Commission is anguished with the reported crime and has taken cognisance of the matter. Chairperson Rekha Sharma has written to Director General of Police, Jharkhand to look into the matter and to ensure that a fair investigation is accomplished (conducted) in a time-bound manner," the apex women's rights body said in a statement.

"A copy of the letter has also been sent to the superintendent of police of Dumka. Action taken must be communicated to the commission within seven days," it said.

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