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Lawyers’ debate on sexual offences

Kendrapara, Dec. 29: The death of the Delhi gang rape victim aroused a debate at the two-day All Odisha Lawyers’ Conference here.

Speakers underscored the need for trial of sexual offences in fast-track courts and speedy pronouncement of judgment, which would serve as a deterrent to offenders.

Eminent jurists and legal experts taking part in the debate said that expeditious and speedy trial of sexual offences would go a long way in curbing such crimes.

“Amendment of existing penal measures against rape and molestation offences against women is not the remedy of the ills. There is abundance of law and legislation. The very purpose of law gets defeated when trails in rape cases proceed at a snail’s pace. The victim and her family members get exasperated,” said Arijit Pasayat, former Supreme Court judge and chairman, authority of advanced rulings (income tax and customs).

The Delhi gang rape case is not a stray incident. The Centre has decided to set up a number of fast-track courts in New Delhi for trail in cases related to sexual offence. But what about the rest of the country? The rape victims elsewhere need to be ensured speedy justice, Justice Pasayat said.