The accused, a temporary sweeper at the Government Rural Hospital in Yavatmal district, was found guilty of sexual harassment under relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
OBSERVING THAT hospitals are a space for care and not exploitation, a special court sentenced a hospital staffer to six years in jail for molesting a patient’s minor granddaughter. The accused, a temporary sweeper at the Government Rural Hospital in Yavatmal district, was found guilty of sexual harassment under relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
According to the prosecution, on November 13, 2015, a woman was admitted to the hospital for treatment. The victim, who is the 13-year-old granddaughter of the patient, was at the hospital to accompany her for the night.
The victim told the court during her deposition that around 10.30 pm when she was laying a mat near her grandmother’s bed to go to sleep, the accused told her that he could provide her with a bed. He asked her to accompany him to fetch the bed and took her to a storeroom, after which he shut the door. He then molested the girl.
Later, a doctor found her in the room and the victim told him about the incident. Her parents were also called to the hospital and informed about it.
The next day, she visited the police station and lodged a complaint. The prosecution examined seven witnesses, including the victim, her grandmother, a nurse and the medical officer.
“Whenever a person goes to a hospital…then the said patient and his family must at least feel protected if no other hospitality is provided. Therefore, this being an offence aggravated in nature by a person who happens to be staff of a hospital… in which accused increased the suffering of the family leaving a permanent mark in a mind and soul of the minor,” the court said.
The victim had come to the hospital from her village to keep company to her ailing grandmother and the accused had taken advantage of the situation. So, he deserves no mercy, the court said.
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