NEW DELHI, Dec 21 � Parliament today passed an amendment to the Oil Pipelines Act to make acts of terrorism to destroy oil and gas pipelines in the country punishable by a maximum of death sentence, reports PTI.
The Petroleum and Minerals Pipelines (Acquisition of Right of User in Land) Amendment Bill, 2010, passed by the Rajya Sabha today, provides for a jail term of a minimum of ten years� rigorous imprisonment for acts of terrorism. The Lok Sabha has already passed the Bill.
The punishment �may extend to imprisonment for life or death� in case the act of sabotage is dangerous and is likely to cause death of any other person, the amendment Bill states.
Prior to the amendment, the Act provided for a jail term of one to three years� for acts of sabotage and pilferage.
Replying to the debate on the bill, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas RPN Singh said the existing sections in the 1962 Act did not contain adequate provisions to prevent such incidents.
Acts of sabotage to any crude oil, petroleum product and natural gas will now be punishable with rigorous imprisonment of up to 10 years and a fine.
On reservations expressed by members on onus lying on the accused to prove innocence, the Minister said �this will apply only for mafias and saboteurs.�