Chennai: Pitching in for harsher punishment for rape, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Tuesday said her government would request the Centre to make necessary changes in the law to provide death penalty and chemical castration to those involved in such crimes.

Expressing grief over the death of the 23-year-old Delhi gangrape victim, Jayalalithaa announced a 13-point action plan to ensure women's safety and prevent incidents of sexual harassment.

"The Centre will be requested to amend the laws to ensure the maximum punishment of death penalty and chemical castration for those responsible for rapes. The offence should also be made non-bailable," the Chief Minister said.

She said steps would be taken to amend Goondas Act and set up Fast Track Mahila Courts in each district to investigate sexual assault cases in the state.

Efforts would be taken to bring sexual assault cases under the purview of Goondas Act as such incidents have the potential to disturb peace."The Goondas Act will be amended", Jayalalithaa said.

Incidents of sexual assault will be treated as a grave crime and top police officials would probe them, she said.

Orders have also been issued to put in place close-circuit television (CCTV) sets in all public buildings to identify those who trouble women, she said.

Police personnel in plainclothes would be deployed at market places and women's colleges to ensure safety of women.

Besides meeting the entire medical expenses of women who suffered sexual assault, efforts would also be made for their rehabilitation, the Chief Minister said.

Setting up of Women Helpline, engaging women lawyers and hearing of sexual assault cases on daily basis to ensure speedy justice were some of the others measures, she said, adding, every effort would be made to ensure that women feel safe and move about fearlessly in Tamil Nadu.


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