The Andhra Pradesh government has vacated two landmark bills intended to transmit rapid arbiter to women and children with the primary focus on victims of rape and other sexual invasions. The first one cleared by the state committee on Wednesday vows justice in 21-days comprising examination and session and the second one authorizations setting up personal courts to try sexual crimes against women and children.
Andhra Pradesh Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2019, also named as Andhra Pradesh Disha Bill, will be instructed in the state assembly on Thursday. It puts the responsibility on the state police to obtain investigations, encompassing the forensic and DNA profiling (when required), within one week from the date of the resentment and asks the courts to finish the trial in two weeks.
The second bill, Andhra Pradesh Special Court for Specified Offences against Women and Children Bill, 2019, is aimed at erecting special courts to try cases of sexual violations against women and children, namely; rape, gang rape, acid attacks, harassment, sexual aggression, outraging the reserve in social media.
Union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had recently suggested a two-month deadline for investigations and six months upper limit for completing the trial in cases of rape and those registered under the POCSO Act.
In July this year, the Centre started an initiative under which 1,023 special courts were to be formed to dispose of 166,882 cases of rape and cases under the POCSO Act, pending trial in various subordinate courts.
The second bill also provisions for the trial of harassment in social media cases under Indian Penal Code’s section 354E, which broadly classifies eve-teasing. First-time offenders will get two years jail term and second timers four years, according to the bill.
The bill also stipulates that sexual offenses against children will invite up to 14 years jail term under IPC section 354 F. Presently, these offenses are tried under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (PoCSO) and the offenders are liable for jail term between three and five years only.