Decision Maker Response

Maneka Gandhi’s response

Feb 3, 2018 — Dear people,

Member of Parliament Ms. Kanimozhi and Purnima, an adult survivor of child sexual abuse, met me recently with a request to help adult survivors to report incidents of child molestation even after many years. Purnima told me that she could not overcome the trauma she faced decades ago.

Children who are abused don’t find the courage to report their abusers till they become adults. In many cases, like in Purnima’s, they realise that they have been abused only after they become adults. The trauma continues for life.

My Ministry is looking into ways and means of how to allow survivors of child sexual abuse to lodge complaints after many years of the crime has been committed.

A one time abuser can go on to become a repeat offender and target multiple children, because children don’t tend to report abuse. It gives the offender a sense of immunity that he will never be caught.

We are looking at whether the statute of limitation on reporting incidents such as molestation can be removed, allowing survivors to complain later in life. This will prove to be a deterrent for child abusers because they will know that they can’t get away with their crimes. We are considering the proposal to see how we can take it forward.

I think such survivors should get justice too, even if it is late in life.

I have referred the matter to the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, to look into the matter and get back to us.

I would like you to remain updated about the work done by my Ministry. Please follow us on twitter @ministrywcd and @manekagandhibjp page. Please also follow us on our Facebook page facebook.com/manekagandhiofficial & facebook.com/ministrywcd.

Thank you,
Maneka Sanjay Gandhi
Union Minister For Women and Child Development