India: 4-year-old boy sexually assaults classmate with pencil; experts say don't criminalise him

The victim was taken to Rockland Hospital, and the doctor on duty after medical examination confirmed that it is a case of sexual assault.

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In an extremely shocking case in India's capital Delhi, a 4-year-old girl was allegedly sexually assaulted by her classmate, who is of the same age, with a pencil inside the classroom of Maxfort School in Dwarka. According to reports, the Delhi police have registered a rape case under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. However, they are still seeking legal guidance in the case owing to the tender age of the culprit.

"The Indian Penal Code (IPC) provides children below seven years of age certain protections against prosecution. We are examining those provisions even as we are handling the matter with utmost sensitivity," Dependra Pathak, Delhi Police's chief spokesperson, told the Hindustan Times.

The victim's mother has narrated the entire incident to the media through email.

On Friday, the victim returned home from her school and complained of pain in her private parts. Initially, her mother ignored the complaints as she thought that the girl was simply throwing tantrums. But, the girl started crying profusely at night and told her mother that her classmate had assaulted her using a pencil and his finger after unbuttoning her pants in an empty classroom.

The victim was taken to Rockland Hospital, and the doctor on duty after medical examination confirmed that it is a case of sexual assault. The hospital has also filed a medico-legal case.

The victim's mother has lodged an FIR at Dwarka Sector 9 Police Station. "She tried pushing him [awa], but could not get away as other children had left and there was no staff around," the mother's FIR report said.

She claims that she was probably assaulted twice, once in the classroom and next in the washroom. As seen in the CCTV footage, her daughter's delayed exit from the classroom corroborated the sexual assault allegation.

According to the girl's mother, the teacher in charge of the two children's class reportedly ignored a text message sent by the girl's mother complaining about the assault.

She said that when the school authorities were approached by her on Saturday, they did not cooperate with her. She added that they also refused to provide her details of the accused.

Meanwhile, the experts have advised the investigators to handle the case with sensitivity.

This entire incident of sexual assault clearly points to an alarming situation at the schools where the teachers are not being attentive enough to see what is happening in the classroom or within the school premises. Recently, the Ryan International murder case has also triggered such questions regarding children safety inside the schools.