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Kathua Rape Case: J&K plans death ordinance for child rapist

The ordinance will be on the lines of Central law: CM

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Kathua Rape Case: J&K plans death ordinance for child rapist
Mehbooba Mufti
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Undeterred by pro-accused protests and demands for a CBI probe in the Kathua gang rape and murder case, the Jammu and Kashmir government has decided to promulgate the ordinance to make rape of minors punishable by death in the restive state. Since, J&K has a special status in the Indian Union under Article 370, the laws made by Centre are not directly applicable in the restive state. Therefore the Mehbooba Mufti government has decided to promulgate its own ordinance to make rape of minors punishable by death.

"We have prepared the ordinance. We will do it in the next cabinet. We will be having our own ordinance which will be almost on the similar pattern that of the centre,"said Abdul Haq Khan, J&K Minister for Law.

The ordinance will be placed before the Cabinet in Jammu next week . After the Cabinet nod, the state will forward the ordinance to Governor NN Vohra who will then issue orders of promulgation.

The decision to bring ordinance has come nine days after J&K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti announced to enact a new law to make rape of minors punishable by death. "We will never let another child suffer this way. We will bring a new law that will make death penalty mandatory for those who rape minors, so that little girl's case becomes the last," Mehbooba tweeted.

The Mehbooba government's decision to promulgate the ordinance has come three days after President Ram Nath Kovind termed Kathua rape and murder of the eight-year-old girl as a "heinous and barbaric".

J&K Finance and Education Minister Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari even went a step further demanding death-plus for the rapists in the state. "We support the harshest measure. If there is more stringent punishment than capital punishment, it should be awarded. If there is any provision of on spot punishment in law, it should be invoked," Bukhari said.

The main opposition National Conference however reiterated the demand for calling special session of legislature to pass a law to make rape punishable by death. "Our party President has already asked for bringing in the law to ensure capital punishment to child rapists in the state assembly. We humbly ask this government to expedite the process and call a special session of the assembly for passage of the bill," said Shameema Firdous, provincial president of the National Conference women's wing.

Why j&k wants to bring in an ordinance

  • Welcoming the Centre’s decision to promulgate ordinance to make rape of minors punishable by death, CM Mufti said her govt intends to bring similar laws. 
  • Since J&K enjoys special status under Article 370, the laws made by Centre are not directly applicable in the state.
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