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Arvind Kejriwal government for trying boys above 15 as adults for rape

Arvind Kejriwal government for trying boys above 15 as adults for rape

If the government chooses to go ahead with the proposals, it could mark flashpoint in its already turbulent relationship with the Centre.

New Delhi: Prosecuting juveniles aged above 15 years as adults for heinous crimes, setting up of 'special police stations' and ensuring death penalty or life term to those accused of raping minors were among a host of proposals mooted by the AAP government on Monday to deal with cases of sexual violence.

A meeting of the Delhi Cabinet, presided over by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, discussed the law and order situation in the city in the wake of rape of two minors, and appointed a Group of Ministers (GoM) to come up with a report within 15 days recommending appropriate amendments to the existing criminal law.

If the government chooses to go ahead with the proposals, it could mark flashpoint in its already turbulent relationship with the Centre.

Briefing reporters after the Cabinet meeting, Kejriwal said a Commission of Inquiry will be set up within a week to examine issues relating to women safety, in accordance with the resolution passed by the Delhi Legislative Assembly.

He also took a swipe at Narendra Modi saying the Prime Minister should "stop his foreign tours" and instead "focus" on improving Delhi's administration.

"Since CrPC and IPC are subjects in concurrent list over which Delhi Government has executive powers, GoM will examine and submit a report on whether Delhi Government can set up special police stations to register and investigate crime against women in those cases where women do not get satisfactory response from local police stations," said Kejriwal.

He said the "GoM will also further examine and recommend that those committing heinous crimes like rape and murder and are above 15 years of age should be treated as adults and not juveniles under the law for being tried in these cases."

The GoM, headed by Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, will prepare a list of rape cases pending in various courts in Delhi in order to fast-track them.

The proposal to prosecute juveniles aged above 15 years of age as adults came as two boys, aged 16 and 17, were accused of raping a two-and-a-half year old girl in west Delhi's Nihal Vihar last week.

A senior government official said after the GoM submits its report to the Cabinet, a decision on whether to forward it to the Centre or not will be taken by the government.

The Chief Minister said Delhi government was ready to spend funds to increase the number of courts, judges and improve the existing infrastructure in this regard for expeditious delivery of justice.

first published:October 19, 2015, 20:43 IST