Ramnath Kovind approves POSCO amendment

In the wake of brutal rapes and muder of minors, Indian President Ramnath Kovind on Sunday approved “the criminal law amendment ordinance, to provide stringent punishment, including death penalty, for those convicted of raping girls below 12 years”.

The federal Cabinet had approved a day before, the ordinance, following a public outcry demanding justice for the rape victims and for a stringent law on the sexual assault of minors.

The minimum term of rigorous imprisonmenment for the rape of a girl under 16 has been extended to 20 years from 10 years, which maybe extended to a lifetime imprisonment.

The perpetrators of rape of a girl child under 12 years of age may undergo 20 years of rigorous imprisonent, extendable to a lifetime of imprisonment or death; in the case of gangrape, life imprisonment or death is made effective.

The investigation time limit has been set to two months, paving way for a speedy trial. The provision for anticipatory bail for the rape accused have been denied. Setting up of fast-track courts is in due consideration of the Union Cabinet.

A national database and profile of sexual offenders is to be maintained by the National Crime Records Bureau and will be sent to the states and UT's for tracking and monitoring incidents of sexual assault.

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