Death Penalty Not An Answer To Everything, Says Govt On Punishment For Child Rapists

| February 2 , 2018 , 13:43 IST

Incidents of rape and sexual assault on minors, even infants as young as 8-months-old have shocked the nation, leading to calls for swift legal action and the death penalty for those sexually assaulting infants and children.

However, the central government on Thursday told the Supreme Court that it was not in favour of amending laws to pronounce death penalty on those found guilty of sexual assaults on infants and children.

Additional solicitor general P S Narasimha, representing the centre told the apex court that "death penalty is not an answer to everything".

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The statement from the ASG was in response to a plea made by petitioner advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava calling for the government to enact a law to give capital punishment to those who rape children.

ASG Narsimha said that the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO Act) already provides graded stringent punishment for those sexually assaulting children, with a minimum of 10-year term of imprisonment for raping a child and an imprisonment of 20 years to life imprisonment for the gang rape of a minor.

The rape of an 8-month-old baby girl in Delhi on January 30 by her own cousin, resulting in severe injuries, caused massive outrage amongst the public that such a young and defenceless child could also be the target of sexual advances.