Rajasthan: Teen gets death penalty for raping 7-month-old under new law

New Delhi: A Rajasthan Court has awarded death sentence to a 19-year-old for raping a seven-month-old baby this year.

This is the first death sentence ordered by a court in Rajasthan after a more severe sexual abuse law was passed by the state assembly in March that allows death penalty in rape of minors under 12 years of age.

Rajasthan is the second state in the country to have brought such a law in force after Madhya Pradesh passed it in December.

The accused took away the child on May when a relative was babysitting her. When the parents came looking for the baby, they were told by the relative that a neighbour had taken her away. She was later found crying in a football field, about a kilometre from their home in Laxmangarh.

The baby was then admitted in Alwar hospital for 20 days. The accused was arrested later and medical examination confirmed rape.

“This is the first such case in Rajasthan and the third in the country. In the first two cases, the accused was given death sentence,” public prosecutor Kuldeep Jain was quoted as saying by NDTV.

The case was fast-tracked and “trial, in this case, was completed after 13 hearings,” he said.

The prosecution said it is hopeful the special judge in the case, Jagendra Agarwal, will award the severest penalty in the rape case.