Stop - rapeThe Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly Friday passed the Andhra Pradesh Disha Bill, 2019 (Andhra Pradesh Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2019). The bill provides for awarding death sentence for offenses of rape and gangrape and expediting trials of such cases to within 21 days.

The Act envisages the completion of investigation in seven days and trial in 14 working days, where there is adequate conclusive evidence, and reducing the total judgment time to 21 days from the existing four months. The AP Disha Act also prescribes life imprisonment for other sexual offenses against children and includes Section 354 F and 354 G in IPC.

Even as this bill is passed, there seems to be very little change on the ground. Ever since the Bill is passed, three rape cases were registered in Andhra Pradesh. These incidents are reported from Krishna, Guntur, and Prakasam districts. The victims in the three cases are a 4-year-old girl, a 20-year-old-physically challenged woman, and a 14-year-old girl.

Accordingly to a recent study, 39 women are raped every hour in the country. And according to ADR India, nearly 30 percent of all legislators have a criminal background, 1581 of sitting legislators have a criminal record, 51 have been involved in crime against women.