Continuation of Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Fast Track Special Courts: Cabinet

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Continuation of Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Fast Track Special Courts: Cabinet

Continuation of Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Fast Track Special Courts: Cabinet

Recently, the Union Cabinet has approved the continuation of the Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Fast Track Special Courts.

  • The scheme has been extended for a further 2 years from April 01, 2021 to March 31, 2023, with an outlay of Rs 1572.86 crore.
  • The Center’s share for this scheme will be provided from the Nirbhaya Fund to the tune of Rs 971.70 crore.
  • It may be noted that the ‘Nirbhaya Fund Framework’ provides a non-lapsable corpus fund for the protection of women. This fund is administered by the Department of Economic Affairs.

Fast Track Special Courts: FSTCS

  • Fast Track Special Courts (FSTCS) are dedicated courts for speedy justice to victims of sexual offences. These courts strengthen the deterrent framework against sex offenders.
  • The Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses (POCSO) Act, 2012 was established under the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2018 for speedy disposal of cases of rape and sexual offences.
  • A total of 1023 FSTCs were set up for this purpose. Of these, 389 FSTCs are specifically focused on hearing matters relating to the POCSO Act.
  • Each FSTC consists of a judicial member and seven other members.
  • The responsibility of setting up the FSTC rests with the state and union territory governments.
  • Presently 28 states are covered under this scheme. It is proposed to expand the scheme to cover all the 31 eligible states.

Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act 2013

  • It was enacted to provide protection to children from offenses related to sexual harassment, sexual assault and pornography (obscene filming). Provision has also been made for the establishment of special courts for the trial of such offences.
  • The Act was amended in the year 2019 to include a provision to increase the punishment for various related offences.

Source – The Hindu

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