On Monday, the Madhya Pradesh Assembly unanimously pass a law that awards death penalty to rapists who rape minors aged 12 or below, ANI reported. This move came after a week the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led Madhya Pradesh Cabinet approved amendments to the Public Safety Bill. The bill will be now sent to the Centre and President Ram Nath Kovind for consent.
The bill offers death penalty or a minimum of 14-year jail term or life imprisonment for those convicted of raping 12-year-old children or below. The Indian Express reported that the bill also has some strict punishment for stalking, disrobing or sex on the excuse of a marriage. As per ANI, the CM Chouhan said in the state assembly that “Those who rape innocent young girls are not humans but demons. They do not have a right to live”. Chouhan further added that frequent stalking will be a non-bailable offense and will be given stern punishment. This move came following the National Crime Records Bureau’s latest report revealed that MP recorded the highest number of rape cases in 2016. In the total rape cases of 38,497 reported in the country in 2016, Madhya Pradesh alone witnessed 4,882 cases.