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Village court tells rapist to marry victim

The accused has been asked to wait until the victim, a minor, reaches puberty

Patna A village court in Bihar has ordered an alleged rapist to marry the victim when she attains puberty, according to reports on Friday.
The victim is 11 years old. According to the Hindu Marriage Act, a girl can legally marry only when she completes 18 years of age.

A decision to this effect was taken at a kangaroo court held at Baisi village in Purnia district earlier this week.
The victim girl who studies in grade six was alone in her house when a local youth intruded into her room and allegedly raped her.
Subsequently, the matter was brought to the notice of the village court earlier this week. The accused reportedly confessed to his guilt after which the court told him to marry the girl. However, since the victim was a minor, the accused was asked to wait until she reached puberty.
“Since the girl is minor, you will have to wait patiently for marriage, but you can’t escape,” a witness was quoted as telling the local media Friday.
On Thursday, the matter finally came to the notice of the local police when the victim’s family reached the local district superintendent of police Nishant Tiwary. The police have assured action against the culprit.
Village courts have been quite active in Bihar, disposing off care immediately while giving bizarre rulings.
Earlier this year, a village court in Bihar slapped a fine of Rs20,000 (Dh1,143) on a Muslim youth accused of kissing a girl twice. The incident took place in Begusarai district of Bihar.
In another incident, a village court held in Khagaria district asked the alleged rapist to pay a fine of Rs100,000 and make an out-of-court settlement of the case last year. The victim, a five-year-old girl, was alone in her house when the youth entered into her house and allegedly raped her.
In another such incident, a village court in Katihar district of Bihar asked a man to marry off his daughter to the youth who allegedly raped her with the direction to pay a handsome dowry to the rapist.
Incidence of rape remains a matter of grave concern in Bihar, and according to an official report, a total of 945 cases of rapes were reported last year. In 2015, a total of 1,041 incidents of rape were reported, while it was 1,127 in 2014 and 1,128 in 2013.

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