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Odishatv Bureau

New Delhi: The CBI Tuesday sought life imprisonment for expelled BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar, convicted for raping a woman in Unnao in 2017, saying it was a fight for justice of an individual against the system.

The probe agency urged the court to give maximum punishment of life term, prescribed under the law, to the politician.

The court adjourned till December 20 the hearing on order for the quantum of sentence to Sengar.

District Judge Dharmesh Sharma adjourned the proceedings in the case till Friday after briefly hearing the arguments by the CBI, the complainant as well as the convict.

The counsel for the CBI and the complainant sought maximum punishment for Sengar, saying the court must consider the "cry of the girls in heinous crimes".

"The sentence must be commensurate with the gravity, seriousness and impact of the crime and its impact on the society at large should be considered. If we see the factual matrix of the case, right from the beginning it is a quest for justice of an individual against the system.

"It is the fight of an individual against the system. Hence we seek the maximum punishment for the convict," CBI's Public Prosecutor Ashok Bhartendu said.

While supporting CBI's submission, the counsel appearing for the rape survivor also sought adequate monetary compensation for her.

"An adequate monetary compensation should be given to the rape survivor. Since the convict is a public servant, it should be considered while granting the compensation," the counsel said.

Dharmendra Mishra, counsel for the rape survivor and her family, told the court, "The woman lost her father, her two aunts. She has been suffering since 2017. She has been de-rooted from her roots."

The counsel appearing for Sengar, however, urged the court to give minimum punishment to him, 10-year jail term, saying he had no prior criminal record.

"He had a political career without any blemish. Since 2002-till date he has been elected repeatedly as a member of the legislative assembly by the public," advocate Tanveer Ahmed Mir, appearing for Sengar, said, adding that the convict did not have a "depraved mentality".

Advocates Dhruv Gupta and Tushan Rawal, also appearing for Sengar, said that the politician was 54-year old and had two minor daughters.

The counsel further mentioned various development works reportedly done by Sengar as an MLA.

"He is responsible for the construction of bridges on river Ganga in a village in UP. He built multiple institutes at Maunpur. His good conduct should also be considered. He should be given minimum punishment," the defence counsel said.

The court had on Monday convicted Sengar for rape under the Indian Penal Code and the POCSO Act for offence by a public servant committing penetrative sexual assault against a child. The rape survivor was a minor when she was assaulted.

After the judgment on Monday Mishra told reporters "our faith in justice has been restored".

(PTI)

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