New Delhi - The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the Central Government to respond to a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking annulment of certain provisions in the juvenile law, including those that spare minor convicts from life imprisonment and death penalty.
Counsel for Shweta Kapoor, a Supreme Court lawyer who filed the PIL, said various provisions of the Act, including Section 16, require to be held as ultra-vires as it prohibits a juvenile above the age of 16 years from being awarded life imprisonment and death penalty.
The Act provides that a juvenile, above 16 years, shall be kept in special homes away from other minors and the period of detention would be of three years, while another provision says that he can only be kept at the special home till he attains 18 years of age.
The PIL assumes significance in the backdrop of the December 16 brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old medical student in a moving bus. The probe in this case has indicated that the minor, 17, was allegedly the most brutal among the six accused.
The physiotherapy student breathed her last at Singapore's Mount Elizabeth Hospital on December 29.