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RS panel suggests dedicated system to prevent online abuse of children

A dedicated mechanism to deal with online sexual crimes on children and changes in the definition of 'child pornography' under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act are some of the recommendations that a panel of MPs looking into the impact of child pornography is likely to have suggested.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Jan 14, 2020, 08.57 AM IST
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The panel may want the POSCO Act to consider as an offence the act of "advocating or counselling sexual activity" to a minor.

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New Delhi: A dedicated mechanism to deal with online sexual crimes on children and changes in the definition of 'child pornography' under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act are some of the recommendations that a panel of MPs looking into the impact of child pornography is likely to have suggested.

The panel may want the POSCO Act to consider as an offence the act of "advocating or counselling sexual activity" to a minor, and may want an international cyber crime reporting portal to facilitate the reporting of sexual crimes against children from all over the world. The panel, headed by Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, is learnt to have submitted its report to RS chairman Venkaiah Naidu on Monday.

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The committee was set up by Naidu last month after the Parliament was informed in the winter session that 377 websites hosting child pornography had been taken down and 50 police cases have been filed involving online sexual exploitation of children. “While children are often victims of sexual abuse… they are also exposed to content on sexual violence and pornography that is understood to affect their wellbeing. We have come up with suggestions that can address these pressing issues” a member said.

A member said the committee, apart from suggesting legislative, institutional and technological measures, has also come up with suggestions on how state level implementation can be strengthened by appointing ‘safety commissioners’ in every state, who could monitor the reporting of sexual exploitation of children on social media. There are around ten legislative recommendations the committee has seriously considered and is likely to have put forward.

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