‘Include rehabilitation in children sexual offence bill’December 21st, 2011 - 11:06 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Dec 21 (IANS) A parliamentary panel examining a bill on the protection of children from sexual offences Wednesday said the proposed law should focus not just on punishing the guilty but also rehabilitating the victims.
The parliamentary standing committee on human resource development, headed by Congress MP Oscar Fernandes, in its report on the bill, said: “The committee strongly feels that protection of children from sexual offences has to be seen in wider perspective.”
“Confining it to confirmation of a sexual offence against a child, followed by levying punishment through special court is simply ignoring the real welfare of a child victim, who may be in deep trauma with no family support and thus fully exposed to further abuse,” it said.
While the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Bill already provides for separate courts for hearing such cases, the committee also recommended the judicial process to be made child-friendly and sensitive to special needs of traumatised victims.
It also suggested including provision which would make it mandatory for state and central government to spread awareness about the bill through different means, like done for the domestic violence act.
The committee added that the clauses should be made gender neutral so that there is no discrimination against male child.
The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Bill, 2011 was introduced in the Rajya Sabha in March this year and then referred to the standing committee. The bill seeks to protect children, defined as anyone under age of 18 years, from offences such as sexual assault, sexual harassment and pornography.
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Tags: 18 years, central government, child victim, clauses, confirmation, discrimination, domestic violence act, fernandes, human resource development, New Delhi, parliamentary panel, parliamentary standing committee, pornography, rajya sabha, sexual assault, sexual harassment, sexual offences bill, special needs, trauma, welfare