Central government to maintain national database of sex offenders
In a bid to curb growing sex crimes in the country, the Narendra Modi government is planning to maintain a national database of sex offenders, so that data can be easily shared among authorities for tracking, monitoring, and investigation. The provision for the database was cleared by the Union Cabinet on Saturday as part of a criminal law amendment ordinance. Here's more.
The database will be maintained by the NCRB
The database will be maintained by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), and will be shared with state governments and union territories when required. The ordinance, as part of which the provision for the database was passed, will be promulgated by President Ram Nath Kovind in a few days. The move comes in the wake of a massive national uproar against increasing rape incidents.
Database will be similar to US, UK sexual offender registries
The NCRB database will be similar to sexual offender registries maintained by authorities in the US and the UK, which have details of any person convicted or charged with a sexual offense all in one national website. Police and legal authorities in any state would be able to access the database for verifying the history of people charged with sexual offenses.
The provisions of the new criminal law amendment ordinance
The criminal law amendment ordinance seeks to amend the Indian Penal Code, the Evidence Act, the Code of Criminal Procedure, and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act. Apart from introducing the death penalty as punishment for rape of a girl below 12 years, the amendment had several other provisions purportedly aimed at delivering swift justice.
Provisions to ensure speedy trial
Included in the provisions of the amendments are measures to ensure speedy trial. Investigation of all rape cases, and trial of all rape cases has to be completed mandatorily within two months each. A six months' time limit for disposal of appeals in rape cases has also been prescribed under the amendments. New Fast Track Courts are also slated to be set up.
Other measures under the amendment to curb rape
Punishments have been revised to become more stringent. Additionally, the amendments have provisions for creation of new posts of public prosecutors and related infrastructure for rape cases. Special forensic kits for rape cases will have to be provided to all police stations and hospitals, and dedicated manpower will be provided for timely investigation. The measures will be launched as a mission in three months.Share this timeline