BJP suggests chemical castration, death penalty for rapists

M Venkaiah Naidu

Against the backdrop of the Delhi gangrape incident, BJP on Monday suggested maximum punishment to the accused in rape cases -- either death penalty or chemical castration.

"There should be maximum punishment to the rapists, death penalty or emasculation (chemical castration of the rapist)," senior BJP leader Venkiah Naidu said.

His suggestions come close on the heels of Congress proposing castration for rapists. In a draft bill for a tougher law to check crimes against women which could also include chemical castration in rare cases, the Congress has proposed imprisonment up to 30 years for rape convicts.

Lashing out at the UPA, Naidu said the 'insensitivity, indecision and inaction' of Congress-led government has sent a 'wrong signal' in the country that the political class, especially the Parliament system had failed to rise to the occasion.

Naidu said a similar suggestion for deterrent punishment of chemical castration had been made by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs chaired by him. The proposals had been submitted before the Home Ministry and suggestions from the Home and Law ministries were being awaited. The committee's next meeting would be held on January 4, he said.

The Delhi gangrape incident had revealed the government's 'casual approach', he said.

For four days the Union Home Minister was 'evasive' and 'casual' in his responses to the persistent demands of members of both Houses of Parliament and took several days to announce the setting up of the Judicial Commission and suspension of some junior police personnel, Naidu charged.

The Prime Minister did not address the nation for seven days, he said, adding, all this showed the government's 'casual approach' on an important issue. The Congress president had not reacted to the incident till yesterday, he said.

Naidu also flayed the police action against the protesters.

Demanding setting up of fast track courts in every district and trial to be completed within three months which should be in camera, Naidu said there should be speedy disposal of sex offence cases.

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