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The Kerala High Court on Thursday granted bail to a man who is accused of sexually molesting his 14-year-old daughter on several occasions. He was booked for offences punishable under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012. But what was more interesting is the genesis of the case of sexual assault. It was the petitioner’s case that the POCSO case was filed after the victim was stopped from following a Korean pop band known as BTS as it was “un-islamic”.

The allegation against the petitioner is that he had sexually abused his minor daughter by touching and kissing her on her private parts, both at the residence as also in a hotel at Kochi’s Nedumbassery. This came to be known after the minor revealed these instances to her aunt, Ms. Hiba. The minor victim had started following the said band on the instigation of her aunt. Also, being aggrieved by the fact that the
petitioner had not permitted the victim to go on a school trip to Wayanad, the victim had raised absolutely false allegations, the petitioner argued.

Opposing the grant of bail, the Public Prosecutor vehemently opposed the grant of bail. He submits that the allegations against the petitioner are extremely serious. Though the investigation had been completed and final report has been filed, the petitioner
cannot be granted bail as the victim is none other than the daughter of the petitioner. Further, absolutely nothing was revealed during investigation which would suggest that this was a false complaint owing to the Aunt’s instigation.

What the Court said?

Justice Gopinath P granted bail after noting that even though the allegations were serious, certain facts put them to doubt.
“It is no doubt true that the allegations are serious. However, certain circumstances mentioned above, leads me to
conclude that there is a possibility that the allegations may be false.”

With this, the Court added that it may not be proper for the Court to make any conclusion regarding the matter. Since investigation has been completed and final report has been filed, continued detention of the petitioner is not necessary for the purpose of investigation, the Court said.

The only apprehension can be that since the victim is none than the daughter of the petitioner, there is every chance of the victim being influenced or intimidated, if the petitioner is granted bail. But the Court noted that the custody of the minor victim is now with her aunt, following orders issued by the Family court. “Therefore, necessary conditions can be imposed to ensure that the petitioner does not come into contact with the victim in any manner and the petitioner can be granted bail subject to conditions”, the Court reasoned while granting bail to the mail.