‘Now, govt must take action soon... youth won’t forgive if govt doesn’t act’

"While most decisions were taken unanimously, there were also some differences. One point, the only point, where we differed was making rape a gender neutral offence. But even this was sorted out later," said former Himachal Pradesh High Court chief justice Leila Seth, a member of the committee.

Asked why the age of juvenile delinquents was not reduced to 16 years as demanded by many, Seth replied: "There is not much difference between a 16 or 18-year old. Juvenile homes are not a pleasant place to be in and they are the breeding ground for criminals."

Former solicitor general Gopal Subramaniam, the third member of the committee, said they had sought help from many psychologists and psychiatrists in preparing the report.

"We wanted to give a modern look to the report so we have mentioned the preamble to the South African Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act, 2000. We also sought responses from eminent academics from Harvard University and Oxford University," he said. "We have made strong suggestions for overhauling the sex education in the country and changing the modules of teaching," he added.

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