Respond to plea against female genital mutilation: SC to Centre

New Delhi, May 8 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Monday sought government's response on a plea seeking to ban female genital mutilation (FGM) or "Khatna", as it is commonly called, and declare it illegal and inhuman.

The bench headed by Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar sought government's response as PIL petitioner Advocate Sunita Tihar told the bench that India was a signatory to the UN Convention on Rights of Child and had also ratified it.

Describing the practice as "inhuman" and violative of girl child's rights under Article 14 (Right to Equality) and Article 21 (Right to Life), the petitioner advocate has sought putting in place a statutory framework to deal with the reprehensible practice.

The PIL has sought framing of guidelines to deal with the situation till Parliament enacts a law to curb the practice being followed by some sects of a community.

Seeking declarations that FGM be made a non-compoundable offence, the petitioner advocate has sought direction to the Directors General of Police in the states to act against the people engaged in the practice under the existing law, until the enactment of a law in this regard.


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