The Narendra Modi government passed the Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018, which amended the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses (POCSO) Act, Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) to pave the way for the death penalty for those convicted of raping minors below the age of 12 years.
This move is nothing more than just a gimmick which is done just to please the emotion of public rather than doing justice to victims. Why I am saying this? because out courts already has power to give death plenty to any convicted in “rarest of rare” cases. Remember the “Nirbhya Case” in Delhi gang-rape in which all convicted were given Death Penalty.
New Amendments have done by Government in POSCO Act
- Stringent punishment for rape of a girl under 12 years has been
provided with the minimum jail term being 20 years which may go up to life in prison or death sentence.
- Minimum punishment in case of rape of women has been increasing for rigorous imprisonment for 7 years to 10 years, expendable to life imprisonment.
- In case of Rape of a girl under 16 years, minimum punishment has been increased from 10 years to 20 years, expendable to imprisonment for rest of life, which shall mean imprisonment till that person’s natural life.
- The punishment for the gang-rape of a girl under 16 years of age will invariably be imprisonment for rest of life.
- Time limit for investigation of all cases of rapes has been prescribed, which has to be mandatorily completed within 2 months.
- Time limit for completion of the trial of all rape cases has also been prescribed and it has to be necessarily completed in 2 months.
- Special forensic kits for rape cases to all police stations and hospitals.
- 6 months time limit for disposal of appeals in rape cases has also been prescribed.
- In 2016, of the 64,138 child rapes cases that come up before the courts under POCSO Act read with IPC section 376, 1869 cases (equivalent to less than 3%) ended in convictions.
- Reason being, Moreover of the total cases of rapes of women and children before the police that year, in over 94% cases (34,650 out of 36, 657), the offenders were known to the victim – he was either a close family member, a neighbor or an acquaintance.
- This main point leads to less conviction, as the parents of the Victim either not report the case, or withdraw it before reaching conviction.
As we already have the provision of “Death Plenty” for convicted of “Rape and Murder” cases and “Murder Cases“. Since the punishment for rape and the punishment for murder are now the same, a rapist will have no incentive to spare his victim’s life, which will only increase the number of cases like #Kathua and “Nirbhya”.
As the Rule will become law, the number of convection will also get decreased because in most of the cases the convicted were near and dear to the victim or her family. So the victim might get forced to either give false statements or withdraw the case and more often never file the case, as no one wants to get his loved ones to get die.
So the things are the New Amendment in the POCSO Act is made just to make people feel good other than that Government neither has interest in improving the social and nor in giving justice to the minors.
According to a survey done with the convicted in Rape cases “The convicted Says,
If a Girl wear “Jeans-Tops” or men’s clothes, they will surely invite us to rape her.
which is something which some of our MLAs and MPs says. With the addition of Death penalty, we can’t change someone’s mindset and views.
There is a Myth that if we increase the punishment or make it hard, there will be fear in the people and the rapes will get a decrease. But as said its a myth, because
– First of all when someone commits a crime – No one ever thinks that He will get caught, everyone thinks that he will get away easily without any issues. (It’s a physiological phenomenon)
If we see it in a simple example… we have a provision of Death Penalty in “Murder Cases”, so almost everyone knows that if He/She kills someone, they can get Death Sentence. Still, there is no decrease in Murder Cases in India.
So in my Opinion, Death Sentence is not a Proper solution. Instead, the Government should make laws on How to teach the people, that Rapes are not good for Society.
For example: In Kenya, they teach the Students from younger classes that, if any Girl says “NO” that means its a “NO” and you have to respect that. You can think if a person is taught these lessons from class First, then there are chances that the person will get “Good UpBringing” and will participate in the Success of Country instead of being a “Rapist” and spend His life in Jails.