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Derek O'Brien narrates how he was molested as a 13-year-old

By Vishal S

New Delhi, July 24: TMC MP Derek O'Brien narrated an incident during a debate in Rajya Sabha on Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill, 2019, which shook the members. Derek spoke about an incident from his childhood when he was molested on a bus.

TMC MP Derek OBrien

Not only should Derek be lauded for speaking about it openly, every individual ought to reflect on realities of our society where perversion just lurks round the corner. Derek spoke about it, but there would many right now who would have faced such situations, but are scared to open up. The need of the hour is to instill confidence among these victims to come forward, speak so that the perverts can be put behind the bars.

"As a 13-yr-old, after tennis practice and in short pants and t-shirt, I got on a crowded bus. I was sexually molested, it was reason enough for an unknown man to ejaculate at shorts of this boy...I didn't speak about it, till I brought it up once much later in my life with my parents. We need to use this forum to reach out to people. The more people talk about it, the more children will be saved. Let's work towards prevention of this heinous crime," he said in Rajya Sabha.

Applauding O'Brien for sharing his own experience of sexual harassment, Union minister Smriti Irani talked about how much the incident leaves an imprint on the mind.

[Child pornography to get new definition, proposed changes in POCSO Act. to come up in LS]

"At least 123 fast-courts have been sanctioned by the government especially for women. More than one lakh cases are pending across the country and 18 states have given consent to establish these courts. The government has sanctioned over Rs 700 crore for the expenditure and by 2021, we aim to form these courts," Irani said.

She said over 6 lakh sexual offenders have been registered under the National Sexual Offenders Registery (NSOR).

Rajya Sabha today passed a bill entailing amendments to the POCSO Act by including death penalty for aggravated sexual assault on children, besides providing stringent punishments for other crimes against minors. Now the bill, would be send to the Lok Sabha for its approval.

The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill, 2019 also provides for fines and imprisonment to curb child pornography. It was introduced in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday by Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani.

Earlier this month, the Union Cabinet approved amendments to strengthen the POCSO Act to combat rising cases of child sex abuse.

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