Shah called it a step towards all-inclusive development and a better future for the youth in the northeast region of the country.
Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS) Bill, aimed at replacing the Indian Penal Code (IPC) of 1860, was introduced by Union Home Minister Amit Shah in the Lok Sabha.
The act of marrying a woman by concealing one’s identity or engaging in intercourse based on false promises of marriage, promotion, or employment will now result in potential imprisonment of up to 10 years.
A bill addressing these offenses has been presented in Parliament, introducing a dedicated provision to address such actions for the first time.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah introduced the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS) Bill in the Lok Sabha, aiming to replace the Indian Penal Code (IPC) of 1860. This bill places special emphasis on provisions concerning crimes against women.
“Crime against women and many social problems faced by them have been addressed in this bill. For the first time, intercourse with women under the false promise of marriage, employment, promotion and false identity will amount to a crime,” he mentioned.
While the judiciary has handled instances where women have alleged rape due to a breach of promise regarding marriage, the Indian Penal Code (IPC) currently lacks a dedicated provision for such cases.
The bill, now poised for evaluation by a Standing Committee, articulates that “Whoever, by deceitful means or making by promise to marry to a woman without any intention of fulfilling the same, and has sexual intercourse with her, such sexual intercourse not amounting to the offence of rape, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to ten years and shall also be liable to fine.”
It additionally specifies that the term “deceitful means” encompasses actions such as making false promises related to employment, promotion, inducement, or engaging in marriage while concealing one’s identity, as mentioned in the report.
Furthermore, the bill under consideration has also rendered the offense of voyeurism impartial in terms of gender, entailing a penalty ranging from three to seven years, the report indicated.
Shah also highlighted that these amendments were introduced to facilitate swift dispensation of justice and to establish a legal framework that aligns with the contemporary needs and aspirations of the populace, as reported.
“In cases of gang rape, the penalty will range from 20 years to life imprisonment. For the rape of girls below 18 years of age, the punishment will be death,” he stated, according to the report.
As outlined by the bill, murder will warrant either the death sentence or life imprisonment, while rape will result in a minimum of 10 years in prison or life imprisonment. Gang rape will incur a sentence of at least 20 years in prison or imprisonment for the convict’s natural life, the report conveyed.
According to the legislation, if a woman dies due to rape or is left in a persistent vegetative state as a result, the perpetrator shall be subject to rigorous imprisonment for no less than 20 years, which could extend to life imprisonment or even the death penalty.
It noted that individuals who commit rape against girls under 12 years of age will face rigorous imprisonment for a minimum of 20 years, which could extend to life imprisonment or the death penalty, in addition to a fine.
Furthermore, anyone found guilty of rape will be sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for a term of no less than 10 years, which could extend to life imprisonment, along with a fine.
The report indicated that if a police officer, public servant, or armed forces member commits rape, they will be subject to rigorous imprisonment for a term of at least 10 years, which may extend to life imprisonment.