Patna: LJP chief Ramvilas Paswan on Sunday supported demand for stringent punishment to rapists but said no to capital punishment.

Describing rape as a crime worse than murder, Paswan told reporters in Patna, he fully supported the demand for stringent punishment to the rapists in general and in the gang rape case of the 23 year-old Delhi girl in particular.

Paswan, however, opposed capital punishment to the accused in this specific case and in rape cases in general. Over hundred countries have written to the UN demanding death sentence be scrapped, he said.

"I will welcome if the UPA government decides to convene a special session of parliament for framing of a law incorporating stringent provisions to punish those who commit rape," he said.

Hailing the UPA government's decision to set up a judicial commission to probe the gang rape case, he said the Centre appeared to be serious about incorporating deterrent measures in the law to deal with crime like rape.

UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde have taken serious view of the gang rape case of the medical student and were aware of the ongoing massive protest in the national capital on the issue and positive measures will be taken in this regard, he said.

The people of socialist leaning have been opposed to capital punishment, he reiterated.


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