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Odishatv Bureau

Sambalpur: Exactly a month after the horrific gang rape of a 15-year-old girl in Sasana area, a special POCSO court here on Saturday awarded life imprisonment to five convicts in the sensational case.

Additional District Judge, Uday Bhanu Jena, District, and Sessions Judge Court, Sambalpur pronounced life imprisonment and also imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 on each of the convicts after a marathon 14-hour long trial on Saturday.

The sentence was prescribed under section 376 D, section 4 and 6 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) Act, sources said.

Terming the judgement as justice to the girl's family and general public, government counsel Santosh Panda thanked the police for quick and efficient probe into the incident. On the other hand, the defence counsel PR Patnaik has alleged improper probe into the incident and said that he will move the High Court.

The girl was gang raped by six persons including a minor on May 2.

According to sources, one of the convict Afzal called the girl on pretext of talking and then raped her when she refused to get intimate with him at her school and fled the spot. Without returning to home, fearing embarrassment, the girl went to the Sasan chhak where she met two others who assured to help but later raped her at Kanthina bypass. Later three others also raped her one after other after taking her to Sasan canal.

Considering the urgency of the matter the district police had arrested the six accused and directed a DSP level probe into the incident. Charge-sheet was submitted within 15 days of the incident.

However on May 23, the girl had allegedly committed suicide by hanging herself in her house.

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