4-year-old boy booked for ‘raping’ classmate in Delhi school, Experts say don’t criminalise him

A four-and-a-half-year-old boy has been booked for raping a classmate inside the classroom as well as the washroom of a prominent private school in west Delhi on Friday, police has told Hindustan Times.

According to a report by Journalist Heena Kausar, and Shiv Sunny the girl, who is of the same age, told her mother that the boy used his finger and a sharpened pencil to assault her sexually. The assault caused wounds in the child’s private parts, her mother said.

Experts however suggest against criminalising the boy and seeing him as a sexual predetor. As per journalist Rhythma Kaul’s report in the same newspaper, legal experts were consulted “since an offence was made out and there was a victim”, and a case of rape under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act was registered.

Delhi Police confirmed the case to Free Press Kashmir over the phone and said that they are proceeding with extreme sensitivity, keeping in mind the suspects age. Although they have registered a case, police is unsure how to proceed.

In her statement to the police, the girl’s mother said the child complained of pain in her lower abdomen after returning from school on Friday. The girl kept complaining sporadically, but the mother ignored it thinking it was “one of her tantrums”.

The girl began crying that night and told her mother about the alleged assault. She told her mother that a boy from her class unbuttoned her pants in the classroom and used his finger to assault her.

In the FIR, the child’s mother stated that she complained to the schoolteacher through a text message that night. She informed the school again on Saturday, but the authorities allegedly did not cooperate with her and instead asked her to give a written complaint on Monday.

Since her daughter’s pain did not subside, she rushed her to a hospital where she was treated as well as a medico-legal case made. A police case was then registered.

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