POCSO ACT (Syllabus: GS Paper 2 – Polity)

News-CRUX-10     30th September 2023        

Context: The Law Commission of India has recently recommended maintaining the current age of consent at 18 years under the POCSO Act and has proposed introducing "guided judicial discretion in sentencing" for cases involving individuals aged 16-18.


  • About: This Act comprehensively outlines different categories of sexual offenses directed at children and imposes severe penalties on those found guilty of such crimes.
  • Establishment: 2012

Key provisions of the Act

  • Gender-neutral legislation: The Act defines a child as "any person" under the age of 18.
  • Non-reporting is a crime: Those responsible for institutions (excluding children) failing to report a sexual offense involving a subordinate can be punished.
  • No time limit for reporting abuse: Victims can report offenses at any time, even years after the abuse has occurred.
  • Keeping victim's identity confidential: The Act prohibits the disclosure of the victim's identity in any form of media unless authorized by the special courts established by the Act.

Law Commission of India

  • About: A non-statutory body, is established by the Union government.
  • Objective: To advocate for just and equitable laws and promote their effective enforcement.
  • Functioning as an ad hoc body, it is created to fulfill specific objectives.
  • It serves as an advisory entity to the Ministry of Law and Justice.
  • Unlike bodies defined in the Indian Constitution, it is established under Article 39A.
output themes