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Lawmakers In India Are Dropping The Hammer On Child Molesters

While this big old world that we live in is chock full of problems that serve as a source of divisiveness, there are some problems that are so revolting that they receive universal scorn and condemnation. Crimes that are committed against children fall into that category, and jurisdictions across the world drop severe punishment on those that are convicted of molesting children. Unfortunately, there are situations where things slip through the cracks, and child rapists get off with the equivalent of a slap on the wrist as a result.

As AWM America shares, one state in India is working towards making sure that doesn’t happen in their neck of the woods. Lawmakers in the Madhya Pradesh assembly have passed a bill that calls for “the punishment method” to be used on those that commit horrific crimes against children.

In essence, convicted child rapists will face the death penalty for their revolting actions. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan provided some insight into the assembly’s reasoning for the passage of the law.

“People who rape 12-year-old girls are not human, they are demons. They do not have the right to live. There are people in society who can be set right only by severe punishments."

"(The bill) will deal with them. We will also raise awareness in society against such crimes,” he said.

Those that are found guilty of raping children younger than 12-years-old face the possibility of being “hanged till death.” In addition, the minimum sentence for pedophiles has been raised to 14 years behind bars, and those found guilty of gang rape are looking at 20 years in the slammer. Reports indicate that the bill has received tremendous support from residents at the state level, but there are no signs that it will become a national law.

Madhya Pradesh is located in the center of India, and it’s the country’s fifth most populous state. The state is also known for having the highest number of rape reports of any state in the country, so it’s obvious that the authorities have some problems on their hands.

This is a proactive attempt by lawmakers at the state level to put a further deterrent in place, but not everyone is on board with it. Those that are opposed to capital punishment aren’t about to cave in on this one, even for crimes as reprehensible as those that are committed against children.

India uses capital punishment for a number of other crimes. In addition to murder, the death penalty has been used against those that have aided or encouraged the suicide of a minor, drug traffickers, and those that have been caught manufacturing and selling poisoned alcohol. Advocates of capital punishment are quick to point out that those that commit extraordinarily heinous crimes stand little chance of being rehabilitated, and that they will essentially be kept alive at the expense of taxpayers.

It’s a complex topic that inspires some spirited debate, and there’s no simple way to get everyone on the same page. That said, particularly reprehensible crimes - such as those committed against children - are something that can unite the overwhelming majority of people.

Could the state law become a national law in India? Could that perhaps lead to other jurisdictions around the world implementing similar penalties against convicted child molesters? We’ll have to wait and see on the answers to both of those questions, but it’s clear that the conversation is at least starting.

Source: AWM
Photo: AWM, YouTube

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