Sexual abuse in the name of beauty pageant

Manoj Pandey sentenced to 7.5 years in prison

Published On: February 7, 2023 03:00 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Feb 7: The Kathmandu District Court has convicted Manoj Kumar Pandey in the case of child sexual abuse and human trafficking. The bench of District Judge Deepak Dhakal found Pandey guilty in the human trafficking case and sentenced him to seven and a half years imprisonment and ordered him to pay a fine of Rs 130,000 to the victim. It has been stated that the perpetrator should be sentenced for over seven years in the human trafficking case and six months in the child sexual abuse case, a total of which sentence in prison have been for seven and a half years. 

Pandey has been ordered to pay a fine and compensation of Rs 130,000 - Rs 55,000 for child sexual abuse and Rs 75,000 for human trafficking. On January 24, the court decided that Pandey pay Rs 50,000 in compensation to the victim along with six months imprisonment, Rs 5,000 in fine. Two cases were registered against Pandey on June 15, 2022. A case was registered against him for child sexual abuse and human trafficking.

Six months after the registration, the district court convicted Pandey in both the cases. Kathmandu District Court Information Officer Deepak Dahal submitted the case for sentencing on Monday.

Pandey was prosecuted under Section 225 of the Criminal Code for 'child sexual abuse'. According to the demand of the victim, the court found him guilty. "If someone takes a child to solitary confinement in an unnatural manner, touches or holds their sexual parts, makes them touch or hold their sexual parts, or engages in any other kind of sexual unnatural behavior with them, it will be considered as child sexual abuse," the Civil Code states. According to the law, the person who commits the offense will be imprisoned for up to three years and fined up to Rs 30,000 rupees. 

It was revealed through social media that Pandey, the main person among the organizers of a beauty pageant, had committed a sexual crime against a teenage girl who dreamed of a bright future in modeling, in the name of making her participate in a beauty pageant. Last May, the victim publicized the incident of sexual exploitation that happened seven years ago through the social network Tik Tok. 

She was 16 years old in the year 2014 and said that she became mentally deranged due to sexual abuse and could not tell anyone about the incident due to fear and panic. She said that now that she knows, she is forced to bring out the crime against her. After the girl posted a video about the incident where she was raped as a teenager, the pressure to register the case increased.

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