Maharashtra clears Shakti law unanimously

Shakti Criminal Laws (Maharashtra Amendment) Bill, 2020 recommends capital punishment in rape cases

The Maharashtra Assembly on Thursday unanimously cleared the Shakti Criminal Laws (Maharashtra Amendment) Bill, 2020 on crimes against women and children. The legislation recommends capital punishment in rape cases, a time limit of 30 days to complete the probe from the day of registering the complaint, and places the onus on social media platforms and Internet data providing companies to share data for the police investigation.

While putting the Bill to vote, State Home Minister Dilip Walse-Patil said that the government does not believe the Act is foolproof. “We always believe that there is scope for improvement. If need be, there will be amendments brought to the Act in future,” he said.

Comment on Mayor

Earlier in the day, the Assembly discussed a “calling attention motion” brought by Shiv Sena MLAs regarding an objectionable comment made by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Ashish Shelar against Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar.

Sena MLA Suneel Prabhu asked why a charge-sheet had not been filed against Mr. Shelar, despite an FIR having been registered at the Marine Drive police station under Sections related to outraging modesty.

Leader of the Opposition in the State Assembly Devendra Fadnavis claimed that since Mr. Shelar had approached the Bombay High Court, a discussion should not be held on the topic. Maharashtra Parliamentary Affairs Minister Anil Parab said that no MLA could be stopped from describing the incident inside the House.

Replying to the discussion, Mr. Walse-Patil said that the probe was underway and further action against Mr. Shelar would be taken soon.

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