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Posted at: Jul 24, 2019, 7:01 AM; last updated: Jul 24, 2019, 7:01 AM (IST)

Bill for death to child rapists tabled in RS

POCSO amendment Bill also aims to curb pornography
Bill for death to child rapists tabled in RS
Smriti Irani, Women and Child Development Minister. File photo

Tribune News Service
New Delhi, July 23

Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani today introduced a Bill in Rajya Sabha to amend the POCSO Act that seeks to provide death penalty for aggravated sexual assault on children and also stringent punishments for other crimes against minors.

In her introductory speech while moving the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill, 2019, the Minister said: “The amendments I move today are ensuring that those who rape our children, especially cases of gang rape, will be met by death.”  The changes in the Act also provide for fines and imprisonment to curb child pornography. Observing that many cases have come to light which show how children have become more vulnerable with evolving technology, Irani insisted that one of the biggest amendments to the Bill is the definition of child pornography.

“Through this amendment, we seek to define child pornography, but we don’t limit it only to videos. The amendment through definition of child pornography expands it to visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a minor or a child, which will include photographs, video, digital or photo generated images,” the Minister said.

Giving details of the amending provisions in the Bill, Irani said under Section 15, a fine of Rs 5,000 is introduced on the first occasion with regards to punishment for storage of pornographic material involving a child. 

On the second occasion, a fine of Rs 10,000 is proposed for not reporting child pornographic material with an intention to share/transmit it, she said.  “If such material is used for commercial purposes, then this amendment proposes to extend a minimum punishment by imprisonment for not less than three years, which may extend to five years with fine or with both,” Irani said.

Highlighting the fact that it was for the first time the amendments were brought for the consideration of the House, she said these elaborately sought to penalise and punish those who persuade, induce, entice or coerce a child by administering chemical substances for attainment of early sexual maturity.

Tightening noose

  • Rs 5,000 fine on first occasion for storage of pornographic material involving a child  
  • Rs 10,000 fine if a violator is caught second time and intends to share the pornographic material
  • 3-year jail which may extend to 5 years, if such material is used for commercial purposes

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