24/12/2014 1:53 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:24 AM IST

Government Plans Stricter Laws To Curb Rising Acid Attacks Against Women

Fareen, a Kashmiri law student holds placards as she participates in protest against an acid attack on a woman in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, Dec. 12, 2014. A young woman law student was attacked with acid Thursday that left her in a critical condition, police said. (AP Photo/Dar Yasin)

Faced with the growing number of acid attacks on women, government is planning to categorise such cases as heinous crimes and fix a time-frame for investigation and trial for speedy justice. All such cases where maximum punishment of life imprisonment or death sentence is possible will be categorised as heinous crimes, a Home Ministry statement said today.

As per Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2013, a person convicted for acid attack is sentenced to imprisonment for ten years or life.

The trial of the offences (under Section 376A-D of IPC is to be completed within 60 days. The Home Ministry is now planning to extend this provision further by suitable amendments in CrPC for time bound investigation and trial of all cases related to heinous crimes.

Government also proposes to bring suitable amendments in law to fix time-frame for disposal of appeals by courts especially in cases of heinous crimes including acid attack to ensure speedy justice.

The decisions to strengthen legal and administrative framework to check acid attacks were taken by Home Minister Rajnath Singh showing utmost concern to the victims of acid attacks, the statement said.

The government has also taken a number of steps to regulate sale of acid, increase punishment for perpetrators of acid attack and compensation for the victims etc.

In order to regulate the sale of acid, a web application having functionalities like registration of stockists and retailers, issue of licenses by the district administration, targeting sale of acid to individuals only after recording personal details like proof of identity and proof of address of the purchaser will be developed.

This measure will considerably reduce unauthorised sale of acid in the country, it said.

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