The NDA government is planning to set up a sex offenders registry in the country, on the lines of those maintained in western countries including the U.S. and the U.K.
Details of sexual offenders even below 18 years of age would be included in the database, which will be put up on the website of National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), government informed the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday.
The government plans to publicise their photographs, addresses, PAN card details, Aadhaar card number, fingerprints and DNA samples through this registry.
The proposal to set up a registry was first mooted by the UPA government after the 2012 Nirbhaya gangrape case in Delhi.
“Draft guidelines on the proposal to set up Sex Offenders Registry in India are under preparation in consultation with relevant Ministries/organisations, before they are put out for wider consultation with the State governments and the public,” Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said during the question hour. The proposal was at a “primary stage,” he added.
MoS (Home) Haribhai Parthibhai Chaudhury told The Hindu “the names and details of sexual offenders, both below and above 18 years of age would be put up only after they have been convicted and completed their sentence in jail. The details will not be included if the case are under trial and are in appeal in a higher court.”
It would be a handy tool for the law enforcement agencies as well.
“It will instil fear in the minds of repeat sexual offenders and the public would be benefited from it,” Mr. Chaudhury said.
This will be an online database of charge-sheeted sexual offenders in the entire country, which people can access through a Citizen Portal in the upcoming Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) project.
The United States has a similar website called the National Sex Offender Public Website.
Mr. Rijiju said in Rajya Sabha that the initial consultation draft includes the registration of individuals “convicted for offences like rape, voyeurism, stalking and aggravated sexual assault” and includes the possibility of registration of “offenders below and above 18 years.”Draft guidelines
Replying to the supplementaries, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said “the Central government has issued these draft guidelines to check sexual harassment. They are still at a very primary stage. The draft guidelines, which have been readied have been sent to Ministries, including the Women and Child Development for suggestions. After this, public comments will be solicited.”
According to the draft guidelines proposed, extensive information on the offender will be collected.
This will include, inter-alia name and aliases, registration of primary or given name, nicknames, pseudonyms, telephone numbers, addresses including temporary lodging information, travel and immigration documents.
Besides, the information on offenders to be collected for the Registry include those related to their jobs, professional licences, information of school, college, institute with which they have been associated, vehicle information, date of birth, criminal history, current photograph, fingerprints and palm prints, DNA sample, driver’s licence, identification card, PAN card number, Aadhaar card number and Voter ID number.