New Delhi: Amid nationwide outrage over the Delhi gang rape, the Supreme Court on Wednesday decided to take up the issue of fast track courts for speedy trial of rape cases even as it sought responses from the Centre and states within a month on providing adequate security to women.

The Apex Court issued notices to the Centre and all the state governments seeking their response within four weeks over safety measures being taken for women.

The direction came on two PILs filed before the court days after the brutal gang rape and murder of a 23-year-old paramedical student in Delhi on December 16. The victim died in a Singapore hospital on December 29.

Showing urgency, a bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir decided to hear tomorrow the PIL seeking establishment of fast-track courts for trial of rape cases.

The petition has also sought suspension of MPs and MLAs who have been charge-sheeted for crime against women.

The petition, filed by a retired lady IAS officer Promilla Shanker, contended that the Apex Court should intervene in the matter as one woman is raped every 40 minutes in the country and most of them remained unregistered.

She also pleaded that cases of rape and crime against women and children be investigated by lady police officials and trial be also conducted by lady judges.

Meanwhile, another bench of justices P Sathasivam and Ranjan Gogoi issued notices to the Centre and all the states on another PIL by advocate Mukul Kumar, seeking safety measures for women.

Kumar pleaded for creation of women police stations in every town to investigate complaints of rape and sexual assault against women and implementation of UN convention on elimination of all forms of discrimination against women.

He submitted that the plight of women in the country exposes the shortcomings that have beset the laws and they have to be removed.

(Agencies)

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