NEW DELHI – The Supreme Court today issued a slew of measures to monitor and fast-track trials across the country in sexual abuse cases involving children under stringent POCSO Act, including a direction to all High Courts to set up a panel of three judges to look into such cases.A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra considered a report produced by lawyer Alakh Alok Srivastava and said that 30,884, 16,099 and 10,117 cases under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, were pending at different stages of trial in Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh respectively.
The bench, also comprising Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, felt the need of issuing directions to ensure that the mandate of the POCSO Act with regard to speedy probe and trial was complied with in letter and spirit.
“The High Courts may constitute a committee of three Judges to regulate and monitor trials of cases under the POCSO Act,” the top court directed.
“The High Courts of all the states would see that the cases registered under the POCSO Act, as prescribed under the Act, are heard and decided by special courts,” it said, adding that such courts “may be assigned” to deal with such cases exclusively.
It also asked the High Courts to issue a direction to special court judges not to grant adjournments during the trial of child abuse cases. – PTI