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A district court in Madhya Pradesh has awarded death penalty to a 22-year-old youth for raping and killing a nine-year-old girl.
While pronouncing the judgement on Tuesday, the court termed the act as 'heinous', which called for an exemplary punishment to send a strong message to the society.
The gruesome incident took place in November 2022, and the court pronounced its judgement within three months of the crime. After a fast-track probe, the police had filed a charge-sheet against accused Rahul Kavde, a resident of Betul district, soon after the crime was committed.
The court has also announced financial aid of Rs 5 lakh for the victim's family.
According to the police, Kavde, who is the brother-in-law of the victim's father, strangulated her to death after raping her in Itarsi town in Narmadapuram district. The police had recovered the body from a forest area located near the victim's house.
A missing complaint was lodged at the local police station, following which the Narmadapuram district police had launched a search operation. The police were initially clueless until they came to know that the girl was seen walking with a youth, who later turned out to be the brother-in-law of the victim's father. Subsequently, the police detained Kavde, who confessed to the crime during interrogation.
Narmadapuram SP Gurkaran Singh said the accused was taken to the forest area where he dumped the body. He tried to mislead the police for hours, but around 70 policemen and FSL team members kept on searching and after five hours, they finally found the body in a semi-nude condition. The child's face was covered with a cloth.
Singh said, "The murderer was immediately arrested by the police and was presented with a challan in the court within 11 days. On the basis of solid evidence, he has been sentenced to death by the Itarsi court."