Written byAakanksha Raghuvanshi ·
The Delhi High Court has agreed to quash an FIR against a couple, who had employed a minor for household work, and directed them to plant 100 trees and pay Rs. 1.5 lakh to the victim.
It also directed the two agents, through whom the minor girl was employed at the couple's house, to offer manual labor for plantation and care of the trees.
Justice Najmi Waziri imposed a fine of Rs. 1.5 lakh on the couple and Rs. 10,000 each on the two agents and directed that the amount be paid to the minor.
In the circumstances, the FIR and all proceedings emanating from there are quashed subject to costs of Rs. 1.5 lakh to be paid by the couple to the victim, the court said.
The court noted that as an expression of contrition for causing unnecessary burden upon the administrative machinery engaged in the maintenance of law and order, the couple submitted they wanted to do some social work. It directed them to plant 50 trees each in Delhi.
The couple was asked to report to the deputy conservator of forests (South Delhi) who shall assign them duties of planting the trees in the Central Ridge for 10 working days in compensatory afforestation or other schemes.
The court said the trees shall be of deciduous indigenous variety with a nursery age of three-and-a-half years and a height of at least six feet.
Depending upon the soil type and topography, the court said the forest officer may consider plantation of Gular (Cluster Fig), Kadamba (Burflower Tree), Pilkhan (White Fig), Jaamun (Black Plum), Bargad (Banyan Tree), Mango, Amaltas (Golden Shower), and Mahua (Butter Tree).
Putranjiva, Badh, Sagwan (Teak Wood), Safed Siris (Albizia Procera), Kala Siris, Anjeer, Kathal (Jackfruit), Palash, Arni, Bistendu, Rohida, and Medshingi were also suggested.
Regarding the two agents, the court said as an expression of their contrition and remorse for having put the child through gravity and pain, they undertake to offer manual labor for the plantation and care of the trees.
Deputy conservator of forest (South Delhi) would file an affidavit of compliance along with pictures of the plantation on or before March 25 before the court.
An FIR was lodged for the offenses of voluntarily causing hurt, unlawful compulsory labor under the IPC and the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act.
It was alleged that the minor was kept in illegal confinement for about three months for household labor and she was brought to Delhi by these two agents, apparently with the consent of the victim's father.
The victim was employed by the couple for household work and was allegedly physically assaulted whenever she made a mistake and was never paid any money for the period of her work, it was alleged.
The matter was also reported to the Child Welfare Committee in the national capital, which had directed the employers to pay wages and compensation to the victim.
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