President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday said the government is deeply concerned about sexual violence against women and on that basis has promulgated an ordinance.
Addressing a joint session of Parliament at the start of the Budget Session, Mukherjee said: "My government is also deeply concerned about incidents of sexual offences against women. After considering the recommendations of the Justice J.S. Verma Committee, the Government has promulgated an ordinance, amending the criminal law to provide for stringent punishment for heinous sexual offences against women.
"The government has also begun to implement a series of administrative measures to improve the safety and security of women in the country," Mukherjee added.
Mukherjee further informed that for ensuring a safe and secure environment for women in work places, the Government introduced the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Bill, 2012 in Parliament.
"The Bill has been passed by the Lok Sabha," he added.
He further said that the National Mission for Empowerment of Women will implement a pilot project in public hospitals in 100 districts, called "One Stop Crisis Centre", a specialized facility for providing all necessary services for women subjected to violence.
Mukherjee also informed that his government has created a separate Department of Disability Affairs.
"My Government has created a separate Department of Disability Affairs. The Government recently launched the Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship for students with disabilities to enable them to pursue higher education," he said.
"For holistic development of children, the Government has approved the restructuring and strengthening of the Integrated Child Development Scheme during the 12th Plan with a total outlay of '1,23,580 crore," he added.
He further said that his Government has enacted a path-breaking legislation, the 'Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act', which provides for stringent punishment for persons who commit or abet such offences. (ANI)