Death for crimes against women: Know all about Maharashtra’s proposed Shakti Act
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav ThackerayImage source: Twitter/@CMOMaharashtra

Death for crimes against women: Know all about Maharashtra’s proposed Shakti Act

The bill has made certain provisions for strict punishment, including the death penalty, life sentence, and heavy fines, for the perpetrators.

Pune: The Maharashtra Cabinet approved the introduction of two draft bills relating to the prevention of incidents of violence and atrocities against women and children in the state.

The bill will be tabled in the legislature in two parts - the Maharashtra Shakti Criminal Law (Maharashtra Amendment) Act, 2020 and the Special Court and Machinery for Implementation of Maharashtra Shakti Criminal Law, 2020, a statement from the Chief Minister''s Office (CMO) said.

The bill has made certain provisions for strict punishment, including the death penalty, life sentence, and heavy fines, for the perpetrators.

WHAT IS SHAKTI ACT

The Maharashtra Shakti Criminal Law (Maharashtra Amendment) Bill, 2020 has been drafted along the lines of the Andhra Pradesh Disha Act Criminal Law (AP Amendment) Act. Once passed by the state legislature it will be called the ‘Shakti Act’.

The Shakti Act is structured on the lines of Andhra Pradesh's Disha Act, which was setup in 2019 to contain crime against women and children after a veterinarian was raped and murdered in Hyderabad.

This year, Maharashtra’s Home Minister Anil Deshmukh led a team of government officials to Andhra Pradesh, where he held discussions with Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, Home Minister M Sucharita and others on the Disha Act.

In Shakti Act, threatening and intimidating women on social media platforms, making false complaints of rape, acid attack, non-cooperation in investigation, disclosure of victims’ identity in case of molestation will also be considered crime.

WHAT THE DRAFT BILL READ

· According to the draft bill, special police teams and separate courts will be set up for investigation and trial of cases against women and children.

· Investigation shall be completed in 15 working days from the date of registration of an offence.

· Reasons for not doing so shall be recorded in writing by the investigating officer.

· After a charge-sheet is filed, the trial shall be conducted on a day-to-day basis and completed within a period of 30 working days.

· As many as 36 special courts, each having a special public prosecutor, have been proposed to be set up to deal with cases.

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