New Delhi: The nation is counting down to the verdict of the Delhi gangrape-murder likely to be delivered in on Tuesday. Following the outrage over the incident, India got a revised law on sexual assault. Getting that law and the system to work would perhaps be the perfect tribute to the braveheart.
The December 16 Delhi gangrape was followed by protests demanding death for rapists, chemical castration and even harsher punishment. In January 2013, the government was finally pushed to set up the Justice Verma Commission for a hard look at the rape law and to suggest amendments.
Women's groups, legal experts and the police weighed in. The commission submitted its report in exactly a month and the amended law was enacted by Parliament on April 2.
The minimum jail term for gangrape has now gone up from 10 to 20 years. If a rape victim dies or is left in a vegetative state the death penalty can now be awarded. There was no such provision earlier.
Acid attack is now a separate offence, punishable by life in jail. Stalking and voyeurism are also separate offences punishable under the law.
Despite outrage over the immunity available to the juvenile accused the Verma commission advised against reducing the age limit from 18 to 16.
The nation now has a revised law on sexual assault. It would be a fitting tribute to the braveheart if the new law serves to deliver swift and firm justice to those guilty of violent crimes against women.