The Hyderabad Police is likely to request for the five accused in the Jubilee Hills gangrape case to be tried as adults to ensure that they get the maximum punishment instead of a lenient one meant for juvenile undertrials, city Police Commissioner CV Anand told the media.
The 2015 amendment to the Juvenile Justice Act, allows an accused aged between 16-18 years to be tried as an adult if he has committed a “heinous crime,” or that which entails a minimum incarceration of seven years.
However, the accused should fulfil three criterions to be considered as an adult by the court – he should have mental and physical capacity, ability to understand consequences and have an understanding of the circumstances of the offence.
However, when tried as a juvenile, the accused can be jailed for only a maximum of three years.
All the five accused in the case are above 16 but below 18 years.
Police have also nabbed a sixth accused in the case after BJP MLA Raghunandan Rao shared a video of the incident – purportedly shot by the assaulters themselves – at a press conference to reveal the identity of the accused.
Anand said that they have accessed all video recordings of the crime, including 12 hours of CCTV footage from inside and outside the pub, a bakery and roads, to get a clear idea of the sequence of events that led to the crime.
“We matched it (video) with the statement given by the victim to a magistrate under Section 164 (CrPC), and corroborated with other evidence. We now have all the details of what exactly happened. Questions on whether there was consent or not are immaterial because she is a minor,” Anand told Indian Express.