Parliament approves bill seeking the chemical castration of habitual rapists

Nov 18, 2021: Parliament on Wednesday passed a bill calling for chemical castration of rapists to stem the rising tide of sexual violence across the country.

The Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill 2021 seeks to amend the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860, and the Criminal Code, 1898.

“Chemical castration is a process duly notified by rules framed by the prime minister, whereby a person is rendered incapable of performing sexual intercourse for any period of his life, as may be determined by the court through administration of drugs which shall be conducted through a notified medial board,” reads the bill.

During the session, Senator Mushtaq Ahmed of Jamaat-e-Islami opposed the bill, calling it un-Islamic and against Sharia. He demanded that the rapists be hanged in public instead of being chemically cast.

Prime Minister Imran Khan had on November 24 approved in principle the law on chemical castration of rapists. The decision was made during a meeting of the federal cabinet in which the law ministry presented a draft anti-rape ordinance.

The draft includes increasing the role of women in policing, speeding up rape cases and protecting witnesses. Emphasizing that this is a serious matter, Prime Minister Imran Khan had said that no delay would be tolerated. “We need to ensure a safe environment for our citizens.”

The Prime Minister had said that the legislation would be clean and transparent with strict enforcement. He said rape victims would be able to lodge complaints without fear, adding that the government would protect their identities.

According to sources, some federal ministers also recommended public hanging for the rape convicts. But the premier had said castration will be a start.

The federal cabinet had, in principle, approved strict severe punishment for rape convicts.

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