Bhubaneswar,December 10 (LocalWire) Odisha government on Tuesday decided to set up 45 fast track courts for expeditious trial and speedy delivery of justice system for sexual offences against women and children.
Of the 45 new fast track courts, 24 courts will exclusively deal with the trial of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act cases while 21 courts are fully earmarked for crime against women including cases of rape, Odisha Law Minister Pratap Jena told reporters here.
The government is intent on improving justice delivery for women-related offences. That’s why the government has initiated measures for establishment more fast track courts in the State, he said.
The Section 28 (1) of the POCSO Act 2012 specifies the establishment of exclusive court in every district to adjudicate sexual offences against minors.
However the State does not have POCSO courts in every district. That’s why; the pronouncement of verdicts in heinous crimes of this nature is getting inordinately delayed.
The government’s announcement for setting up 24 POSCO courts is definitely a positive step towards right direction, commented rights activist, Biswapriya Kanungo.
It is pertinent to note here that registration of rape cases is the State is on the rise with 4,367 cases registered from January 2018 till September 30, 2019.
Disconcertingly, 55% of the rape survivors were minor girls.
The number of rape cases registered in the year 2017 was 2,221 against 2,144 cases in the previous year. In 2018 year, it had climbed to 2502 cases. This year till September 30, 1865 rape cases have been registered.
Of the rape cases registered till September end this year, 965 cases pertained to sexual assault of minor girls. The preceding year (2018) had witnessed 1430 cases of minor girls’ rape.
Of the 1865 rape cases registered this year (till September end), six women were raped and then murdered, the ministerial reply said.
In a period spanning fro 2015 up to 2019 (September 30), as many as 11,018 rape cases were registered in the State. Of them, 6,085 (55%) were minor girls.