Boy sent money bor­rowed from dad to men on gay dat­ing app

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES CITY - Rebecca.Samervel @times­group.com

Mumbai: Giv­ing bail to a 54year-old busi­ness­man in a case of sex­ual of­fence against a 16-year-old boy, the POCSO court con­sid­ered the fact that a chargesheet has al­ready been filed against him. The bail ap­pli­ca­tion of an­other ac­cused, who is a school teacher and is the first of six ac­cused in the case, will be heard on Mon­day. His first plea was re­jected in July.

The FIR was lodged on June 8. The mat­ter came to light in May af­ter the child’s mother caught a 20-year-old old man sneak­ing out of her 3BHK flat at 3am. The state­ments of both mother and son are part of the chargesheet.

The boy said he had bor­rowed In­dian cur­rency from his fa­ther on the pre­text of help­ing out a friend and the dol­lars were trans­ferred with the help of his fa­ther’s credit card. The boy said his par­ents were di­vorced. While he lives with his mother and a younger sib­ling, his fa­ther lives in the vicin­ity. He said that dur­ing his tenth grade, his mother had given him a room for study­ing, which was close to the flat’s main door.

The boy said that he joined the app last year claim­ing he was an adult. He said that af­ter chat­ting and ex­chang­ing nude pic­tures with the men, he would meet them at des­ig­nated spots. He said that in Fe­bru­ary, he con­fided in his mother that he did not have feel­ings for girls and liked boys. At this, he said, his mother took him for coun­selling to a doc­tor.

The boy said that on May 17, at 3am, when his mother woke up to drink water, she saw a man walking out of his room. She asked the man his name and when she asked her son who he was, the boy told her he was a friend. Sus­pec- ting that some­thing was amiss, his mother took his phone and saw the app and his sex­u­ally ex­plicit chats. He said that on May 23, his mother ad­mit­ted him to a psy­chi­atric clinic.

Sev­eral chats are part of the chargesheet, along with med­i­cal re­ports of the boy.

The mother in her state­ment told the po­lice that dur­ing a coun­selling ses­sion the boy con­fided in the doc­tor about a man who had sex­ual re­la­tions with him since April 2017. The woman said this made her go to the po­lice. The boy’s state­ment was recorded on June 11. In it he took the names of sev­eral men, who were sub­se­quently booked. The mother al­leged that the men had taken ad­van­tage of her son de­spite know­ing that he was a mi­nor. She said that when her son con­fided in her about his feel­ings for the same sex, she was con­fused about how to han­dle the sit­u­a­tion and hence took him to a psy­chi­a­trist.

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