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Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today revealed that amendments to the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (POCSO Act) have been approved by the Cabinet, reports ANI.
The amendments call for more stringent punishments for those convicted under the POCSO Act. Prasad stated that the Cabinet has approved the death penalty in aggravated sexual offences under the Act.
The Law Minister was also quoted as saying,
“Attempt to inject hormones in children to make them major has been made an aggravated offence under Section 9 of the POCSO Act.”
Also called for is stricter action against those found to be in possession of child pornography. For those found storing such material for commercial use, the jail term has been proposed to be extended to five years for the first conviction and seven years for the second conviction.
Earlier this year, the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2018 was passed, replacing the Ordinance that was passed in the wake of the Kathua rape. Amidst opposition from various quarters, the Amendment Act called for the introduction of a new Section 376AB of the Indian Penal Code, which introduced the death penalty for those who commit rape on women under twelve years of age.