In a recent verdict that sent a strong message against crimes targeting foreign tourists, a 19-year-old man has been sentenced to two years in jail for molesting a woman tourist from Peru. The judgment, delivered by Metropolitan Magistrate P I Mokashi at Mazgaon court, emphasized that the accused’s actions had tarnished the image of India and that leniency would send the wrong message internationally.
The incident took place a little over two months ago, and the court wasted no time in convicting and sentencing the accused, Riyaz Ahmed. Alongside the jail term, the court imposed a fine of Rs 5,000 on him. The judgment, made public on Saturday, acknowledged the credibility of the victim’s complaint, stating that a woman with a good background and reputation, especially as a foreigner, would not falsely implicate someone without valid reasons.
During the sentencing hearing, the defense lawyer pleaded for leniency, considering Ahmed’s young age and the fact that it was his first offense. The lawyer argued that probation of good conduct would be more appropriate. However, the court rejected this plea, pointing out that the accused had intentionally entered the woman’s room and touched her inappropriately, resulting in her fear of traveling in India.
The magistrate emphasized that the accused’s actions had far-reaching consequences, stating that it had not only harmed the victim but also maligned the image of the entire country. The court expressed concern that granting probation under the Probation of Offenders Act would send a wrong message worldwide.
The convicted man was employed as a manager at the guest house where the 38-year-old Peruvian woman was staying during her solo trip to Mumbai. According to the victim’s account, the accused repeatedly entered her room, insisted on taking selfies with her, and engaged in inappropriate touching. Such behavior is not only a violation of personal boundaries but also undermines the sense of safety and security that tourists expect when visiting a foreign country.
This court ruling serves as a reminder that crimes against tourists will be dealt with firmly, safeguarding the dignity and well-being of visitors to India. It also sends a strong signal that the country takes its reputation seriously and is committed to ensuring a safe and welcoming environment for all visitors. By holding the perpetrator accountable, the court has taken a step towards restoring trust and confidence in India as a tourist destination.
It is crucial for societies to prioritize the safety of tourists and foster an environment that discourages such crimes. The verdict serves as a deterrent and should encourage authorities, local communities, and individuals to work together to create a culture that respects and protects all visitors, regardless of their nationality or background.
The court’s decision to sentence the man responsible for molesting a Peruvian tourist underscores the importance of upholding justice and protecting the reputation of India as a tourist-friendly nation. By taking a firm stance against such offenses, the court has sent a powerful message that crimes against tourists will not be tolerated. This serves as a call to action for society at large to promote safety, respect, and inclusivity, ensuring a positive experience for visitors from around the world.