Home Minister P. Chidambaram on Thursday said the government intended to bring a law to check honour killings in the current session of Parliament.
Saying that cases of honour killing were bringing “dishonour to the families, the community and the country”, he said the proposed law would identify the crimes and award punishment with “more severity”.
He also said, in reply to a call attention motion by CPI’s Gurudas Dasgupta, that whoever is the cause of the crime, an individual or a collective, must be punished.
“My duty is to ensure that laws adopted by Parliament are obeyed and enforced. Once the law is made, it must be enforced. Those involved must be punished.”
Chidambaram also said that a group of ministers to consider a draft law prepared by the law ministry would submit its report soon.
Maintaining that it would be a “strong bill”, he said it would define honour killings and take within its sweep cases of forcing women to strip in public and externing people from villages. “Acts which are humiliating will be punished with severity,” he said.
Speaker Meira Kumar expressed serious concern over the growing number of such incidents, saying young people were being killed by those who are supposed to love them.
“It is a dehumanising process and we have to take it very seriously,” Kumar said, as members belonging to most major parties sought stringent punishment for those involved in such crimes, including khap (caste) panchayats.
RJD chief Lalu Prasad sought an all-party meeting on the “sensitive” issue involving castes. Dasgupta asserted “criminality is criminality and cannot be condoned”.