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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 August 2006, 15:12 GMT 16:12 UK
Two-day rape trial 'sets example'
Amarnath Tewary
Patna, Bihar state

Protests against kidnapping in Bihar
Bihar is India's most lawless state
A court in the north Indian state of Bihar has sentenced a man to seven years in prison for rape after just two days of hearings.

It may be the fastest such court case in Indian history. Most court cases drag on for years, some for decades.

The trial begun on 25 July and the judgement was announced on 27 July.

Police in Bihar, India's most lawless state, say they are also trying to file charges against suspects as fast as possible to combat crime.

Examination

The case concerned the rape of a minor girl last December.

The prosecution alleged that the accused, Gajendra Chaudhury, raped the girl when she had gone to pick vegetables in a field.

The girl filed a complaint with the police who sent her for a medical examination. Once the rape was confirmed, the police pressed charges in court in April.

The case then came before Judge Arun Kumar Srivastava who delivered his rapid verdict last week after hearing the testimonies of the doctor and the police.

Bihar is India's most lawless state with very high crime rates. Concerned by this negative image, the state government is now trying to improve the law and order situation.

'Sends a message'

A senior police officer, Mr Abhayanand, says the two-day rape trial will have a positive impact on society. And he says the police also have a role to play in the quicker implementation of justice.

"As part of our strategy to curb crime and kidnappings in the state we have started filing charges against the accused criminals in the shortest span of time and so the trial begins quickly and justice is dispensed soon. It sends a message to the criminals," he says.




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