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Maharashtra bill on sexual crime: Shakti Act

Date: 12 December 2020 Tags: Bills & Laws


In a bid to curb heinous crimes against women and children in the state, the Maharashtra government has approved a draft bill that has provisions for stern punishment for the perpetrator.



The draft bill seeks to amend relevant sections of the IPC, CrPC and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act for the proposed law's application in the state.



  • The Shakti Act provides for completing investigation and trial within a stipulated time-frame and stringent punishment, including the death penalty and heavy fines, for the culprits.

  • Special police teams and separate courts will be set up for investigation and trial of cases against women and children, according to the draft bill.

  • The perpetrators, if found guilty, will be punished with imprisonment for life for not less than ten years but may extend to the remainder of natural life or with death in cases which have characteristics of being heinous in nature.

  • Under the proposed legislation, a sum of Rs 10 lakh will be given to an acid attack victim for plastic surgery and facial reconstruction and the amount will be collected as fine from the convict.

  • Investigation shall be completed within a period of 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 concerned and these may include inability to identify the perpetrator.

  • Then the probe period will be extended up to seven working days. 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.

  • Some cases will be tried in-camera for recording of evidence of victims and witnesses who are vulnerable.

  • The bill also proposes setting up of “Women and child offenders Registry” linked to National Registry of sexual offenders and will be made available to law enforcement agencies.

  • The government will set up institutions like the One Stop Centre for providing victims rehabilitation, legal aid, counselling, and medical support.

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