Tharoor wants new law named after gang-rape victim

New Delhi, Jan 1 (IANS) Union minister Shashi Tharoor Tuesday suggested that a revised anti-rape law could be named after the 23-year-old Delhi gang-rape victim. His idea drew flak from the BJP which called it a "needless diversion" while the Congress termed it a personal view.

In a comment on micro-blogging site Twitter, Tharoor, minister of state for human resource development, said her name should be used and she should be honoured if her parents did not object to it.

"Wondering what interest is served by continuing anonymity of #DelhGangRape victim. Why not name & honour her as a real person w/own identity?" Tharoor tweeted.

"Unless her parents object, she should be honoured & the revised anti-rape law named after her. She was a human being w/a name, not just a symbol," he said.

As per law, names of victims of rape or molestation are not revealed.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Shahnawaz Hussain said Tharoor's remarks were a needless diversion and it was time for making a strong law against rape without delay.

He said naming or keeping the victim's identity a secret was not the main issue and every section of society was following the court guidelines on the issue.

Hussain said Tharoor should press his party for a special session of parliament to pass a strong anti-rape law.

Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi said Tharoor's tweet was his personal view.

The 23-year-old woman, who was raped and brutally assaulted Dec 16, 2012, has been given several pseudonyms by media and protestors including 'Damini', 'Nirbhaya' and 'Amanat'.

Activists and politicians have demanded amendment to anti-rape law to ensure speedy justice and tougher punishment for criminals.

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