President Ram Nath Kovind has promulgated the stringent anti-rape ordinance. It paves the way for providing stringent punishment, including death penalty, for those convicted of raping girls below the age of 12 years.
The Indian Penal Code, the Evidence Act, the Code of Criminal Procedure and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses or POCSO Act stand amended with the promulgation of the ordinance
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. Gangrape of a girl under 12 years of age will invite punishment of jail term for the rest of life or death
The measure also provides for speedy investigation and trial. The deadline for the completion of trial in all rape cases will be two months. A six-month time limit for the disposal of appeals in rape cases has also been prescribed.
There will also be no provision for anticipatory bail for a person accused of rape or gang rape of a girl under 16 years.
The National Crime Records Bureau will maintain a national database and profile of sexual offenders. This data will be regularly shared with the states and the Union territories for tracking, monitoring and investigation, including verification of antecedents of sex offenders by the police
The tightening of the law against sexual offenders follows public outcry over the Kathua and Unnao incidents.