Life term for sacrilege: Punjab pushes for new laws amid lynching reports
New Delhi : After two cases of lynching over alleged acts of sacrilege, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa has urged Centre to add life time term for the guilty.
The Code of Criminal Procedure (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018 and The Indian Penal Code (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018, cleared the Assembly in 2018 and have also received the Governor's assent and are awaiting the President's assent.
According to the amendment, the guilty would be awarded life term for causing damage or sacrilege to Guru Granth Sahib, Bhagavad Gita, Quran and the Bible.
In his letter to Union Home Minister Amit Shah yesterday, Mr Randhawa said the "sacrilege of holy books is becoming a major issue in Punjab". "Shri Guru Granth Sahib is considered a living Guru and not an object by the Sikhs and it is accorded respect according to Sikh maryada," he wrote.
He also mentioned that the current three year jail term for the guilty is not adequate to deal with the situation.
"Punjab being a border state, it is extremely necessary to maintain communal harmony here. For this, deterrent punishment is a must for those trying to disturb communal harmony by indulging in the sacrileges. So, I again request that the Presidential assent for the said Bills may kindly be obtained and conveyed to the State Government, at the earliest possible."
In less than 24 hours, two people were beaten to death in Punjab for alleged instances of sacrilege.