Child rape death penalty sought in India

Frederick Owens
April 22, 2018

"The President (Ram Nath Kovind) must not approve this regressive ordinance, as it does little to promote the best interests of children", she added.

Where rape is of a girl below 16 years, the minimum punishment has been increased from the existing 10 years to 20 years, extendable up to imprisonment for remaining period of the convict's "natural" life. Yesterday, in a letter submitted to the Supreme Court, the government had said that it had started the process to amend the POCSO Act.

Oddly enough, the Yogi Adityanath government in UP failed not just in taking action against BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar, it has also chose to withdraw a rape and kidnapping case against former Union minister Chinmayanand.

But sexual violence, including against children, remains unabated in India, with some 11,000 child rape cases reported in 2015.

After the Nirbhaya case in December 2012, when the criminal laws were amended, the minimum sentence for raping a woman was kept at seven years of rigorous imprisonment which could be extended to life in jail.

Right now, the maximum punishment for child rape is life imprisonment.

On Saturday, police in central Madhya Pradesh state arrested a man over the rape and murder of a 4-month-old girl. "This is a grave crisis and the government has abdicated its responsibility in ensuring the safety and security of women and children", she said.

Meanwhile, the home ministry officials said that the ordinance isn't the only step that is being taken by the government which has chose to adopt a "comprehensive response" to deal with the incidents of rape in various parts of the country.

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The time limit for investigation of all cases of rape has been prescribed, which has to be mandatorily completed within two months.

It stipulates stringent punishment for perpetrators of rape, particularly of girls below 16 and 12 years.

The new laws included doubling the prison sentence for rape to 2 years and criminalizing voyeurism and stalking.

The proposed Ordinance also makes it hard for those accused of raping or gangraping a child under 16 to obtain bail, removing the provision for anticipatory bail for such a person.

India is set to introduce the death penalty for anyone convicted of raping a child under the age of 12, following a number of high-profile cases. (Reuters) People participate in a protest against the rape of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua near Jammu, and a teenager in Unnao, Uttar Pradesh, in Kolkata.

A 2016 investigation by The Washington Post of almost 400 fast-track rape courts found that those set up to speed the prosecution of rape cases do not always have the impact that advocates hope for.

These measures will form part of a new mission mode project to be launched within 3 months.

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