The bill also provides for imprisonment for life and confiscation of the moveable and immoveable property of such convicts.
The current law, the Anti-Hijacking Act, 1982, which was last amended in 1994 is to be repealed.
The cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, gave its approval for introduction of the comprehensive Anti-Hijacking Bill 2014.
After the hijacking of Indian Airlines Flight IC-814 in December 1999, it was felt necessary for providing the award of death penalty to perpetrators of the act of hijacking. The incident of 9/11, in the US where aircraft were used as weapons, also created the need to further amend the existing act, said an official statement.
The Anti-Hijacking (Amendment) Bill, 2010 was introduced in the Rajya Sabha in August 2010. During the process of amendment, a global diplomatic conference was held at Beijing in August-September, 2010.
India is a signatory to the Beijing Protocol signed at the conference which brought out new principal offences combined with ancillary offences, enlarged the scope of ‘hijacking’, expanded jurisdiction and strengthened extradition and mutual assistance regimes.
The cabinet has also given approval for ratification of the Beijing Protocol, 2010, said the statement.