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Mumbai man jailed for stalking teenager, court says ‘unkind’


The man frequently harassed the girl; she went to the police after an incident in 2015. (Representative image)

Mumbai:

A local court sentenced a man to a year and a half in prison for sexually harassing a 15-year-old girl by calling her “article”.

“Not being related in any way and not being in any type of relationship, it was completely inappropriate to [man] to act as he did…after addressing her using the term “article”…typically used by boys to address girls in a derogatory manner as it sexually objectifies them,” said the court, refusing to give a lighter sentence, that of probation with a promise of good behavior, to the businessman from the Sakinaka district of the megalopolis.

“Using the term ‘object’ to address any girl is obviously insulting in nature,” Borivali Court Judge SJ Ansari said in his October 20 judgment in the seven-year-old case.

Although the man, Abrar Noor Mohammad Khan, and his friends frequently harassed her, the girl and her parents turned themselves in to police after an incident on July 14, 2015.

“Around 1:30 p.m., the young girl had gone to her school for work. When she came back around 2:10 p.m. and walked through an alley… [Khan] who was sitting with her friends in the alley came up behind her, pulled her hair and said ‘kya article kidhar ja rahi ho’“, the prosecutor told the court.

Khan had claimed – without any evidence later provided – that he was friends with the girl, whose parents had filed a bogus complaint as they did not like them being friends.

The prosecution demanded ‘sufficient punishment to send an appropriate message to society as a whole’, and specifically to people who ‘make girls’ lives miserable by teasing and inappropriately touching them when they walk on the road”.

While acquitting him of more serious charges and some related charges, the court imposed on him a prison term of one and a half years under section 354 of the Indian Penal Code for sexual harassment, and a similar sentence. under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act. The two sentences will run parallel, so he will only serve 18 months in prison. He had already served about four months of detention after his arrest, which would be exempt from this.

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