The Uttarakhand High Court on Wednesday ordered that cases registered under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012, as well as under Section 376 (rape) of I.P.C. will from now on be investigated only by a woman police officer not below the rank of sub-inspector.
The Bench comprising Acting Chief Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Manoj K Tiwari further directed that the survivor in such cases shall also only be examined by a woman doctor.
“Henceforth, in the cases registered under POCSO Act as well as under Section 376 of I.P.C. or any other sexual offence relating to child/girl, the enquiry/ investigation shall be carried out by a woman police officer not below the rank of sub-inspector and the victim shall only be examined by woman doctor, as provided under Section 27 of the POCSO Act,” it ordered.
The Court was hearing a petition filed by a woman, whose 16-year-old niece had been subjected to sexual assault. She had now alleged that the accused was threatening the girl and her family members, and was mounting pressure on them to drop the proceedings against him.
The petitioner had alleged that the Investigating Officer in the case, who is the Sub-Inspector, Kotwali Gangnahar Roorkee, District Haridwar, was also pressurising the family to withdraw the proceedings.
The Court further noted that the Investigating Officer had visited the girl’s school, revealing her identity. This, it said, amounted to “serious dereliction of duty”. It, therefore, directed disciplinary action to be taken against the officer, and disposed of the petition with following directions:
Read the Judgment Here