Lok Sabha takes up discussion on POCSO Amendment Bill

New Delhi: The Lok Sabha on Thursday took up discussion on a bill that makes punishment more stringent for sexual crimes against children and provides for death penalty in cases of aggravated sexual assault.

The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill, 2019 was moved for consideration and passage by Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani.

She said the Bill provides for levying fines and imprisonment to curb child pornography.

The minister said that 60 per cent of people using the internet were of ages less than 24, and there has been an instance of 5,000 people subscribing to an online porn channel which had the video of a crime.

She said the bill will protect the interest of vulnerable children in times of distress and ensure their safety and dignity.

Referring to a case of drugs being administered to children to bring about early sexual maturity, she said the bill seeks to award strong punishment in such cases.

The bill, which has been passed by Rajya Sabha, seeks to amend Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012.

The strong penal provisions are expected to act as a deterrent to curb child sex abuse.

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