The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2013

The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 was passed in the aftermath of the Nirbhaya case wherein a female student was gang-raped in December 2012. The Act amended several provisions of the Indian Penal Code, Indian Evidence Act, and the Criminal Procedure Code. By way of this amendment, several new offenses have been recognized and incorporated into the Indian Penal Code, including acid attack (Section 326 A & B), voyeurism (Section 354C), stalking (Section 354D), attempt to disrobe a woman (Section 354B), sexual harassment (Section 354A), and sexual assault which causes death or injury causing a person to be in persistent vegetative state (Section 376A). The Act also amended the already existing offenses to make them more stringent. Notably, the definition of rape in Section 375 was broadened to include acts in addition to penetration. Also, Section 370 was replaced with Section 370 and 370A. The amended section incorporated the definition of trafficking as provided in the UN Trafficking Protocol while excluding “forced labour.” Also see the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2018 for additional amendments to rape and sexual violence crimes.



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