Maharashtra state cabinet has approved new bill "Shakti Act" on sexual crimes to have death penalty

The Shakti act is modelled on the lines of Andhra Pradesh’s Disha act, which was brought last year. A committee was found out to review the Disha act and prepare an identical law.

Maharashtra state cabinet has approved new bill "Shakti Act" on sexual crimes to have death penalty
uddhav thackeray

In a bid to curb crimes against women and youngsters in Maharashtra, the state cabinet has approved a draft bill called the Shakti act that has provisions for stern punishment, including the execution life , and hefty fines against perpetrators.

A statement from the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) said on Wednesday that two bills are going to be tabled within the legislature  the Maharashtra Shakti legal code (Maharashtra Amendment) Act, 2020, and therefore the Special Court & Machinery for Implementation of Maharashtra Shakti legal code , 2020 - to offer shape to the law against perpetrators of crime against women and youngsters . The draft bill are going to be tabled within the state legislature during the upcoming two-day winter session in Mumbai on December 14-15.

What is Shakti act

The Shakti act is modelled on the lines of Andhra Pradesh’s Disha act, which was brought last year. A committee was found out to review the Disha act and prepare an identical law. After this, a cupboard sub-committee headed by PWD minister Ashok Chavan was found out to approve the draft act and put it before the cupboard for clearance.

The draft bill will come up for discussion and approval in both houses of the legislature. After getting the house nod, the bill are going to be sent to the central government for approval and presidential assent.

The draft bill seeks to amend relevant sections of the Indian legal code (IPC), the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) and therefore the Protection of youngsters from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act.

It provides for completing probe during a case within 15 days and trial within 30 days. Therefore, there's a stipulated time-frame for completing the investigation and trial.

Stringent punishment, including the execution and heavy fines on the perpetrators may be a key feature of the draft bill. The perpetrators are going to be punished with imprisonment for all times for not but ten years but may reach the rest of natural life or with death in cases characterised as ‘heinous’.

Special police teams and separate courts are going to be found out for investigation and trial of cases against women and youngsters under the new legislation. As many as 36 special courts, each having a special prosecutor are proposed to be found out .

In cases involving acid attacks, a sum of Rs 10 lakh are going to be given to the victim for cosmetic surgery and facial reconstruction and therefore the amount are going to be collected as fine from the accused.

The bill also proposes fixing of a “Women and youngsters Offenders Registry” linked to the National Registry of Sexual Offenders with details of persons convicted of specified offences of sexual violence against women and youngsters .