Sembi: The Film Shows Justice Is Possible With POCSO

Sembi the film provides justice to the child victim, thereby spreading the needed awareness in the society about POCSO Act.

Trigger Warning: Child Rape, Trauma, Harassment at hands of law

The title character revolves around a ten-year-old who is sexually assaulted within the first few minutes. What follows is the path taken by her grandmother ‘Veerathaayi’ to reach justice for her only relation, who is the world to her. They belong to the tribal community living in the Kodaikanal Hills.

It is a big surprise for the audience to note the famous comedy actress, Kovi Sarala, as the grandmother in such a highly emotional role. Her presence would usually indicate laughter-filled moments, but here we see her occasionally smile and sometimes sarcastically. She carries the entire weight of the story, struggling every moment to reach their destination.

At first, she thinks her granddaughter Sembi has been attacked by wild dogs. Later, when the doctor informs her about the incident, it takes time for her to grasp the situation. After she realizes the danger Sembi had been through, she strives to make her reach her normalcy.

Though not educated, she believes the law will do its duty.

A child cannot consent to sexual advances!

When people mock the tribal community women would indulge in anything just for a few hundred rupees and Sembi would have given her consent for this incident, Veerathaayi rises with a sickle in anger.

Why do men always need proof to believe when a sexual assault happens? No girl would ever want to come forward and wrongly accuse others unless something had happened to her.

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When would the society understand this and stop their derogatory comments?

Understanding POCSO Act is important

The second half turns interesting when stressing more about the POCSO (Protection Of Children from Sexual Offences) ACT.

It also emphasizes that sometimes people think it takes a long time to win over a case and feel there is no point in continuing their legal battle. It is common people’s ignorance that this awareness is still missing is the point mentioned here.

This act is different. The sole testimony of the victim can be taken into consideration while providing the judgement. The example of the Bihar case in 2021, where the judgment was provided within one day, was cited here.

It is considered to be the fastest verdict by any POCSO court in the country.

The trauma of the crime done to a child will remain

A kind-hearted lawyer comes forth to help them. He stays nameless till the end. It is quite easy to guess that criminals have a political background, and all the evidence can be erased.

Defending the case, the lawyer says he doesn’t have evidence to support their allegation, but has only the truth with them. When he makes Sembi see the accused, the horror in her eyes gives way to the judgment, thus imprisoning the accused.

This movie does provide justice to Sembi thereby spreading the needed awareness in society.

Justice delayed is justice denied, but never with POSCO Act.

Image source: From the posters of Sembi, edited on CanvaPro

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