Bills passed in 2019 for women’s safety
Protection of Children against Sexual Offenses (Amendment) Bill, 2019
The Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses (Amendment) Bill 2019 was presented to Rajya Sabha by Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Zubin Irani on July 18, 2019.
The Bill amends the Protection of Children against Sexual Offenses Act 2012. The law aims to protect children from offenses such as sexual assault, sexual harassment and pornography. ) penetrates his penis into a child’s vagina, mouth, urethra or anus, or (ii) compels a child to do the same, or (iii) inserts any other object into the child’s body , or (iv) applies his mouth to any part of the child’s body.
The penalty for such an offense was imprisonment for seven years to life and a fine. The bill increases the minimum sentence from seven years to ten years.
It further adds that if a person commits a penetrative sexual assault on a child under the age of 16, they will be liable to imprisonment for 20 years to life, with a fine.
Human Rights Protection (Amendment) Bill, 2019
The Human Rights Protection (Amendment) Bill 2019 was introduced to Lok Sabha by Home Minister Amit Shah on July 8, 2019. The Bill amends the Human Rights Protection Act 1993 human rights.
The law provides for a National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), State Human Rights Commissions (SHRC), as well as Human Rights Courts. The law provides that two people with knowledge of human rights should be appointed as members of the NHRC.
The bill amends it to allow for the appointment of three members, at least one of whom will be a woman. By law, the chairmen of various commissions such as the National Commission on Scheduled Castes, the National Commission on Scheduled Tribes and the National Commission for Women are members of the NHRC.
The bill plans to include the chairpersons of the National Commission for the Backward Classes, the National Commission for the Protection of Children’s Rights and the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities as members of the NHRC.
Muslim Women (Protection of Marriage Rights) Bill 2019
The Muslim Women (Protection of Marriage Rights) Bill 2019 was presented to Lok Sabha by Minister of Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad on June 21, 2019.
It replaces an ordinance enacted on February 21, 2019. The bill provides that the declaration of triple talaq, in writing or in electronic form, is thus illegal. The talaq dealt with by this legislative initiative is essentially talaq-e-biddat in which the word “talaq” is spoken three times by a Muslim, which would result in an irrevocable and instantaneous divorce.
The law makes it a reprehensible offense duly punishable by three years’ imprisonment and a fine. The law also offers the possibility of aggravating the offense at the request of the woman who is subjected to a triple talaq before the magistrate.
Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill 2019
The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill 2019 was introduced in Lok Sabha on July 19, 2019 by Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawarchand Gehlot. The bill defines a transgender person as a person whose sex does not match the sex assigned at birth.
This includes trans men and trans women, people with intersex variations, genderqueers, and people with socio-cultural identities, such as kinnar and hijra.
Intersex variation is defined as a person who, at birth, exhibits a variation in their primary sex characteristics, external genitalia, chromosomes, or hormones from the normative standard of the male or female body.
Andhra Pradesh Disha Bill 2019 (Andhra Pradesh Criminal Law Amendment Act 2019)
On 13 December 2019, Andhra Pradesh Assembly passed Andhra Pradesh Disha Bill, 2019 (Andhra Pradesh Criminal Law Amendment Act 2019) to sentence convicts in rape cases to death within 21 days.
The AP Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2019 or Andhra Pradesh Disha Act seeks to amend the Code of Criminal Procedure for the “heinous offenses of rape” so that in the presence of “adequate conclusive evidence” the investigation is completed within seven working days.
The new law also stipulates that the trial must be completed within 14 working days, thus reducing the total duration of the judgment to 21 working days.