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Maneka Gandhi to ask for Death penalty in child rape cases
Maneka Gandhi to ask for Death penalty in child rape cases
14 April, 2018
Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi on Friday stressed on the urgency for making amendments to the POCSO Act.  Deeply perturbed by the horrific rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl Asifa in Kathua, she said she has asked her department to work on a proposal to amend the POCSO Act to bring in the provision of death penalty for the rape of a minor below the age of 12 years.

"I have been deeply, deeply disturbed by the rape case in Kathua and all the recent rape cases that have happened on children. I and the (women and child development) ministry intend to bring an amendment to the POCSO Act asking for death penalty for rape of children below 12 years," Maneka said.

WCD secretary Rakesh Srivastava said they will send the proposal seeking amendment to the law ministry soon. “We are in talks with the law ministry. Once they clear it, we will move the cabinet for approval,” he said.

Eight people, including mastermind Sanji Ram, have been charged with abduction, rape and murder of the eight-year-old girl from the Bakerwal community in Rasana village in January.

In the present Protection of Children Against Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, there is no provision for capital punishment with the maximum sentence being life imprisonment for penetrative sexual assault as well aggravated penetrative sexual assault.

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