In the wake of widespread protests against the growing incidents of rape in the country, the President has promulgated an ordinance allowing death penalty as the highest punishment for rape instead of life term imprisonment.
The Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs issued a gazette notification in this regard on Tuesday.
The ordinance will be known as Women and Children Repression Prevention (amendment) ordinance -2020. It took immediate effect.
The Cabinet cleared the draft of the ordinance on Monday.
The Cabinet on Monday approved the draft of the Women and Children Repression Prevention (Amendment) Bill, 2020 with a provision of death penalty as the highest punishment for rape.
According to Article 9 (1) of the existing Women and Children Repression Prevention Act-2000, the punishment for rape is life imprisonment.
The ordinance was issued following waves of anti-rape demonstrations across Bangladesh after a video footage of five men gang-raping a housewife, stripping her naked and filming the video of the incident in Noakhali’s Begumganj upazila, went viral on social media.
The incident occurred at Joykrishnapur village under Eklashpur union of the upazila on September 2.
Protesters staged demonstrations in the last few days over the growing incidents of rape, sexual harassment and violence against women in Bangladesh.