Ordinance making child rape punishable with death approved

Ordinance making child rape punishable with death approved

The Union cabinet on Saturday approved an ordinance, proposing to punish perpetrators of rape of girls below 12 years of age with the maximum penalty of death sentence.

It has been proposed to complete the investigation and trial in all rape cases on a fast-track basis as it has to be completed within a period of two months each, with no provision for anticipatory bail in the rape case of a girl below 16 years of age.

"Government has taken serious note of incidents of rape in various parts of the country. While expressing deep anguish over such incidents, it has been decided to devise a comprehensive response to deal with the situation," sources said.

The country saw huge public outrage over the murder-cum-rape of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua and another incident of sexual assault involving BJP Unnao MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar.

The Union cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the promulgation of the Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018 for effective deterrence against rape and instilling a sense of security among women and especially young girls in the country.

The Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018, mandating maximum punishment of death to child rapists, would be sent to President for his assent.

The Ordinance would entail changes in Indian Penal Code, Criminal Procedure Code, Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act and Indian Evidence Act.

Under the proposed change, stringent punishment for rape of a girl under 12 years has been provided — minimum 20 years' imprisonment and maximum imprisonment of either a life term or death.

In cases of gang-rape of a girl below 12 years, punishment will be imprisonment for the rest of life or death sentence, the official sources said.

Besides, the minimum punishment in case of rape of a woman has been increased from rigorous imprisonment of 7 years to 10 years, extendable up to life imprisonment.

In case of rape of a girl under 16 years, minimum punishment has been increased from 10 years to 20 years, extendable to imprisonment for rest of the natural life of the convict.

The punishment for gang-rape of a girl under 16 years of age will invariably be imprisonment for the rest of the life of the convict, the sources said.

A time limit of six months has been set for disposal of appeals in rape cases.

DH Newsletter Privacy Policy Get top news in your inbox daily