A special Judge A S Ansari of Mumbai court while sentencing a 25-year-old man to imprisonment for one and half year said that calling a girl “item” is punishable under sections 354 of the IPC.
The fact of the case is that the victim was returning from the school at afternoon walking through a lane of, the accused who was sitting with his friends in the lane came behind her, pulled her hair and said “kya item kidhar ja rahi ho ?”
As the victim felt ashamed, she told the accused to not to do so after which he started abusing her and told her to do whatever she could as she could not harm him in any way due to which the victim gave a call to police from her mobile phone and asked for help.
The police reached the spot However, by that time, the accused had run away from the spot. The victim then went home and informed her father about the incident after which she went to Police Station with him.
The FIR against the accused the came to be lodged by the victim for the offences punishable under section 354, 354-D, 504, 506 of the Indian Penal Code and under section 12 of the POCSO Act (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012).
Justice observed that “Item is a term used generally by boys to address girls in a derogatory fashion as it objectifies them in a sexual manner, the same will clearly indicate his intention of outraging her modesty.”
While refusing the accused to release, justice said that “Such offences need to be dealt with a heavy hand as a lesson needs to be meted out to such road side romeos, in order to protect the women from their uncalled for behaviour. Consequently, there does not arise any question of granting the benefit of probation to the accused or showing unwarranted leniency to him.”
Justice said that the victim and the accused didn’t even know each other it was wholly inappropriate of the part of the accused to act in the way in which he did, which act qualifies as using criminal force to her.
Justice also held accuse guilty under section 12 of the POCSO Act.