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Madras High Court's sensational judgment on watching porn

Saturday, January 13, 2024 • Tamil Comments
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Madras High Courts sensational judgment on watching porn

On Friday, the Madras High Court made a significant decision by quashing a case filed against a Chennai youngster who had downloaded and viewed two child pornography videos on his phone. The Ambattur police, who had registered the case, had also confiscated the phone used for downloading the illicit content.

Justice Anand Venkatesh, in his ruling to dismiss the case, highlighted the evolving nature of the youth's behavior, noting that the current generation is grappling with a similar addiction to pornography as earlier generations had with liquor and cigarettes. Instead of punitive measures, the court emphasized the need for society to adopt a more mature approach, advocating counseling to help these young individuals overcome their addiction.

The judge clarified that merely watching porn videos in private would not automatically trigger the provisions of Section 14 (1) of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012, or Section 67B of the Information Technology Act, 2000, which were applied to the youngster based on an anonymous complaint. The court further emphasized that the two videos depicting teens with an adult woman, downloaded from the internet, had remained confined to the private domain of the young individual.

Additionally, the court noted that the youth willingly appeared in court and admitted to being addicted to watching porn films on the internet. Moreover, he expressed a genuine desire to break free from this habit and expressed willingness to undergo counseling.

Justice Anand Venkatesh supported his decision by referencing recent statistics from a study, revealing that nine out of ten students were addicted to porn videos. The court acknowledged the adverse impact of such addiction on the psychological and mental well-being of the youth, emphasizing the importance of addressing these issues through counseling rather than punitive measures. This ruling signals a progressive and nuanced approach to handling cases related to the consumption of explicit content, recognizing the need for empathy and rehabilitation.

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