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Deliberation on Penal Code (Amendment) Bill of Bhutan 2019 continues

Posted on :20 January 2020

Today, the House resumed the deliberation on the Penal Code (Amendment) Bill of Bhutan 2019. The House agreed with most of the recommendations proposed by the Legislative Committee while some were assigned to the Committee for re-deliberation. The House directed all the concerned members who have raised their issues during the session to re-deliberate on the sections in the committee meeting.
 
The House at length deliberated on the new section 284 (G) on Fronting and the need of categorizing fronting amongst Bhutanese separately as it is very much prevalent in the country. Some Members opined that fronting amongst Bhutanese should not be termed an offence or the grading of this offence should be eased while others expressed the necessity to uncover the reasons behind this offence.
 
The House also deliberated on the proposed increase of sentences for the offence of rape of various nature. Extensive re-deliberation was made on Section 183 ‘Rape of a child above twelve years of age’, which particularly states that if the sexual intercourse between children of sixteen years to eighteen years is consensual at the time of occurrence, it shall not be considered rape thereafter even if one of the children has become an adult when a complaint is lodged. Members supported and acknowledged the Committee’s proposal on the amendment and expressed that it will contribute towards reducing the issue of underage rape.
 
The Committee will finalize the sections after the meeting. The final proposal of the Committee will be submitted for adoption on 7 February 2020 tentatively.
 
Tomorrow, the House will deliberate on the Civil and Criminal Procedure Code (Amendment) Bill 2019.

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