Anti-rape bill punishes acid attack, disrobing

New Delhi, March 21 (IANS) The anti-rape bill has provided for specific punishment for crimes such as acid attack, disrobing and voyeurism, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said Thursday, adding that the legislation was not against men.

Replying to debate in the Rajya Sabha on the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2013, Shinde said the legislation had several new sections dealing with crimes such as trafficking.
He said the decision to fix the age of consent for sex at 18 was taken after consultation with political parties.
He said the age of consent was 16 in the Indian Penal Code but was raised to 18 in the ordinance promulgated by the government.
Describing the bill as tough and rigid, Shinde said it would have its effect in the coming years.
He said changes in the existing law were necessary for the dignity of women and to increase their sense of security.
The minister said the bill provided for action against police officials for not registering complaint of victims.
Sections dealing with the position of dominance implied political dominance too, he said.
Shinde said men also wanted the bill to be passed for the protection of their mothers and sisters.
“It (the bill) is not against men,” he said.
Shinde said there was a wide consensus on passing the bill.