The Centre on Tuesday said it was contemplating a separate law with tougher provisions to curb child pornography, saying it was concerned about the lack of stringency in cyber laws to deal with the menace.
Reacting after a Chennai court granted bail to a Dutch national who had been arrested on charges of child pornography in November 2009, Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily said a “tough law with stringent punishment” was required.
William Heum, 56, was granted conditional bail on Monday evening by a Chennai metropolitan court. He was arrested by the cyber wing of Chennai police under the provisions of the Information Technology (Amendment) Act, 2008, for uploading child pornographic content on the Internet.
The police had acted on a tip-off from Interpol.
“As far as this offence is concerned, we are contemplating a separate law which will make it very stringent, and will ensure that proper investigations are done and punishment is conferred,” Moily told HT.
The minister said the government would adopt a “zero-tolerance policy” on child pornography.
The country lacked a specific enforcement agency to deal exclusively with cyber offences, Moily added.
Since the challenges posed by cyber crime were new to India, the country did not have the collective skill of experts to deal with such situations, the minister observed.
“We need to revisit many things. As far as the cyber law is concerned, I think we need to have a relook at the subject. Because cyber law is a really dynamic subject, not a static one.”
Heum, who has been staying in India for the past 30 years, also faces charges of sexually abusing children at an orphanage in Mahabalipuram in 2002. He is out on bail in the case.