Indian Army –Magic Formula to have beautiful and successful daughters ? #WTFad #AFSPA #Kashmir #Manipur


Dear Indians

Do you want a daughter ? No of course not, why will you want a girl child , she is such a burden and a son will only carry on the family name etc etc… blah blah.

Oh No  !  you dont want to have a  girl child !!!

Well  in shillong specifically and allover india generally, the  Indian army  is giving the incentive, to have a girl child. Wow, this advertisement will go a long way in balancing child sex ratio ?  and it might also give impetus to the ‘ Laadli Campaign, which is in deep shit for now, 42% girls dropped from Laadli scheme over 2 years

army

So above in the advertisement you see—  PRIYANKA  Chopra, Gul Panag, Preity zinta,  Anushka  Sharma , Celina Jaitley , Simmi Garewal,  Amrita singh, Chitrangadha , Sakshi Tanwar, and it says -‘If you want to have beautiful and successful daughters  join INDIAN ARMY”,.

Now , Indians this  is your  chance dont let ti go away.. RUSSSSHHH TO INDIAN ARMY,  if you want to have BEAUTIFUL daughters who will become a hit  Bollywood  or television actresses, and will make you PROUD and will  add to the great  HONOR  of your family, ie   if they save themselves from honor killing.!

Also all women in the ad are BEAUTIFUL as per what is  ingrained in our brains. The super-skinny, super-tall, and amazingly gorgueous figure; The Super-Models and Actresses.The  certain typecast images fed on physical appearances and . If you don’t fit into those notions, you feel terrible – that’s why people are unhappy about their bodies. This advertisement further promotes, the fact  that to succeeed you need to have a hour glass figure ?. How do you define beauty ? Who said “big” isn’t beautiful? Who said curves aren’t sexy?
Who told you to change who you are, loosing the weight that you’ve gained so far. For me Tuntun, Manorama  all were beautiful also. beauty has nothing to do with your body but your innerself , your personality as a whole. For me Sheetal Sathe, Soni Sori, Aparna Marandi, Irom Sharmila are all BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE, and SUCCESSFUL as well.

 The Fact that  whether you will  have a daughter or son THE MANS SPERM WILL DECIDE, if  you have a daughter, she has to decide her life and what’s success for her ?

This  sexist  advertisement further strengthens  the stereotypes feminist have been fighting.  Women are human being and not relationships , think about them outisde their roles as  daughters mothers and sisters. Valourising women as  daughters, sisters, , mothers, bhabhi, dadi and Nani.  Today women are screaming at top of their voice-- ” I am not your  Mother, Wife, Sister or daughter . I am a PERSON.  So this ad, adds to all the sexists ads which are defining every woman by her relationship to another person rather than as a person in her own right; and that relationship (by implication if not stated overtly) is usually with a man. The self-sacrificing mother who bravely sends her son to war; the devoted sister who pampers her brother, the obedient daughter who makes her  PARENTS  proud, as stated in the ad . Women are  fed up being boxed into traditional roles. They are angry at being told what to wear, how to behave and lead their lives.  Respect women”, we tell our sons, “for they are all someone’s mother, sister or daughter.” Aha,,,,, yes…..  But the childless woman;  and a  woman whose husband is no more or whose  father has died and has no brother to ‘protect her honour’ — well, she’s fair game, isn’t she?  This is the kind of logic we perpetuate when we glorify a woman by her relationship rather than as a person.

I wonder if all these ‘ SUCCESSFUL DAUGHTERS’  have given their permission to be on the Advertisement and if they agree

and gulpanag tweets says so,

About the join army ‘ad’.Whether in jest or not,I have no problem with it.I owe 100% of what I am to my AF upbringing. Proud of it. @rwac48

— Gul Panag (@GulPanag) April 14, 2013

I wonder,   if all of them are  proud of  The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act . which is to-date the single most direct instrument violating the democratic rights of the people of the North East and of Jammu and Kashmir. The Act is implemented when an area is declared ‘disturbed’ by either the central or the state government. Since 2 November 2000, she has been on hunger strike to demand that the Indian government repeal the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA), which she blames for violence in Manipur and other parts of northeast India. Having refused food and water for more than 500 weeks, she has been called “the world’s longest hunger striker”.

What is  rationale for  keeping AFSPA ,  thinking that security persons who rape innocent women should enjoy impunity in the name of national security? For whose security was the law enacted, for that of the country or of the criminals in uniform? Whenever some change is suggested in the Act the army seems to oppose it and the civilian government buckles under its pressure. For Eg , when the Jeevan Commission appointed to inquire into the alleged rape and murder of 30-year old Manorama Devi of Imphal in Manipur arrested by the Assam Rifles suggested  AFSPA should be repealed ,the  Government did not even publish the report.

Do you all know of woman called Manorma ?  In 2004, the women of Manipur held a protest after the brutal murder of Thangjam Manorama who was taken into custody from her home by the Assam Rifles under suspicion of having links with rebels. Her bullet ridden body was found a few kilometres away from her home, bearing signs of torture. Twelve Manipuri women came out naked, holding a banner saying ‘Indian Army Rape Us’ to protest against the paramilitary forces of the Assam Rifles demanding justice and taking a stand against the many rapes of other girls. Despite the curfew imposed, the protests by the women continued as they wanted the men responsible to be punished

One of the major rape cases in the history of Kashmir and indeed whole of India is the Kunan Poshpora mass rape incident. A village in northern Kashmir’s Kupwara district, Kunan Poshpora, on February 23, 1991 witnessed incidents of alleged mass rape of 20 women by the Army troops in one night. The incident drew the attention of national and international media. However this was soon forgotten and the womenfolk of the village landed in unending troubles. Women who deserved the respect and honor of the society, were not secure anymore form the cruel face of the armed forces and since that incident, numerous other cases of rape and enforced disappearances have come to fore in the last three decades. Another case which shook the region was the 2009 Shopian rape and murder case which resulted in protests rocking the whole Valley and several families lost their loved ones in the agitation.

Some  more cases of rape and sexual assault against personnel of the Army and central forces in Kashmir:

Case against Harbhajan Singh and Gurtej Singh

May 15, 1994: Rashtriya Rifles men entered the house of a couple and took the husband to Qazigund Hospital. When he returned the next morning, his wife told him she had been gangraped. A case of rape an other charges was filed at Qazigund police station. Responding to an RTI application, the home department said it sought sanction on January 23, 2006, to prosecute the Army men and have not yet got it. In a 2009 affidavit in the high court, the defence ministry said the state was informed that both accused, Nk Harbajan Singh and Rfn Gurtej Singh, had been tried by a summary general court-martial for rape, sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for 10 years and dismissed from service. “A retrial for the same offence will be in contravention to Article 20 (2) of the Constitution,” it argued.

Case Against Major Arora

January 3, 1997: A family comprising a 60-year-old, his two daughters and a grandson were preparing to go to bed at Manzgam, Kokernag, when some soldiers allegedly broke in. They were allegedly led by Major Arora of 5 Rashtriya Rifles. “He slapped me and dragged my younger sister (then 16) into a room and raped her,” the elder daughter told The Indian Express recently. The elder daughter’s husband had joined the Hizbul Mujahideen and the local army unit would often raid her father’s house. The day of the alleged rape, the Army allegedly picked up the father, who remains untraced 15 years on. The younger sister is now married with children, the elder one said, while her own husband surrendered  to the army, divorced her and remarried.

The police registered a case of rape at Anantnag and the government sought the defence ministry’s sanction to prosecute the officer. In an affidavit in the J&K High Court on June 5, 2009, then defence secretary Ajay Tirkey said the ministry received the request in December 2006 and it is “under consideration in army headquarters/Ministry of Defence”. On January 10, 2012, the ministry, responding to an RTI query, said permission was denied on April 21, 2007. “There were a number of inconsistencies in the statements of witnesses… The lady was forced to lodge a false allegation by anti-national elements,” the MoD said.

Case against Major Aman Yadav

December 5, 1999: Army men led by Major Aman Yadav of 28 Rashtriya Rifles, along with a few counter-insurgents, raided a house at Norpora, Kitter Dhaji, in Rafiabad. The officer allegedly raped a housewife, whose husband wasn’t home, while his men allegedly robbed the house. The family later left the village.

On January 4, 2000, based on a complaint by the victim’s husband, Panzala police lodged an FIR, one of the charges being rape. In an affidavit to the high court on June 5, 2009, then defence secretary Tirkey said the ministry received the request for sanction in January 2009 and “the case is under consideration in Army headquarters/Ministry of Defence”. In response to a separate RTI query, the MoD said sanction was denied on September 23, 2010. It has argued the allegations are “baseless and framed with mala fide intentions to put army on the defensive” Intriguingly, the ministry has cited it as a case of torture leading to death. Calling the allegations “mala fide” was effectively an indictment of J&K police, for it was on the basis of the police probe’s outcome that sanction was denied. There was, however, no follow-up government action. In response to an RTI application, police said they closed the case on August 19, 2011, having declared the accused “untraced”.

Case against Captain Ravinder Singh Tewatia

February 14, 2000: Captain Ravinder Singh Tewatia and three special police officials allegedly entered a house at night in Nowgam, Banihal. Captain Tewatia and one of the SPOs allegedly raped a mother and her daughter in separate rooms. A case of rape was filed in the Banihal police station. Two chargesheets were prepared for house trespass, assault, wrongful restraint and rape, and submitted to the Banihal chief judicial magistrate’s court on April 1, 2000.According to information gathered by rights group International People’s Tribunal on Human Rights and Justice through RTI applications, the case was split between a court-martial and criminal courts (in Banihal, Ramban and Jammu). The court-martial found Tewatia guilty of rape, sentenced him to seven years of imprisonment and dismissed him from service. He challenged the findings on October 1, 2000. On December, 31, 2002, the high court set aside the court-martial’s ruling. In 2003, the defence ministry filed a letter patent appeal in the high court, where it is pending. The state government didn’t challenge the high court order.

Rape case against  BSF Personnel

April 18, 2002: Personnel of the BSF’s 58 Battalion allegedly gangraped a 17-year-old in front of her mother, relatives and neighbours, all held hostage at gunpoint in Kullar, Pahalgam. Some 15 or 16 men in a BSF patrol party, passing through their village, had been beating up the girl’s uncle and she had tried to rescue him. A medical examination confirmed rape, while then BSF inspector general (Kashmir Frontiers) G S Gill, too, conceded that BSF personnel had committed rape. The girl identified three men at a parade. The same day, a case of rape was registered at Pahalgam police station. The police say that they submitted a chargesheet before the chief judicial magistrate in Anantnag. There hasn’t been any progress since.

Case against Major Rehman Hussain

November 6, 2004: Troops of 30 RR raided the home of a horsecart driver at Badhra Payeen village in Handwara at night. The man’s younger brother said, “The officer went into my brother’s room and pushed him out.” “He dragged my daughter (then 10) into the kitchen,” the wife of the targeted man this correspondent, adding the officer left and returned after an hour. This time, the woman alleged, she was raped in the kitchen.

The police registered a rape case and the district administration ordered a magisterial inquiry. The Army invoked the AFSPA . The accused officer, Major Rehman Hussain, was tried by a general court martial, which absolved him of rape. He was, however, found “guilty of using criminal force with the intent of outraging the modesty” of the 10-year-old girl and dismissed from service. But he challenged the decision in court and returned to service.

Even the  comments by apex court few days back while hearing PILs filed by families of victims of alleged fake encounters in Manipur, are a stinging rebuke of the lack of political will on revoking laws like the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). In this instance, the government’s response to the damning report of the SC-appointed committee set up to probe six such cases in Manipur was that it agreed that such fake encounters should not take place. But mere “taking note” will not do any more. The government must speedily act to revoke this black law from wherever it is in effect, be it the north-east or Jammu and Kashmir. Blanket immunity for security forces has led to murder, rape and other crimes. And when the legal framework vests such crimes with impunity, it vitiates the basic principles of democracy and the rule of law that are necessary for the citizens of these areas to feel part of the national mainstream.

The  Court  also sharply brought attention to another vital fact: keeping these laws, and thereby maintaining an unnatural state where the armed forces are seen as the primary representatives of government, mutates the whole political, democratic system itself.

Now after  getting a glimpse of AFSPA, what the supreme court of india says of Indian army ?

I wonder  if you  all are still proud of Indian Army

This sexist  advertisement should be immediately removed,

It will be great if  women part of the advertisement ask to do so.

best

Kamayani Bali Mahabal

Not proud of Indian Army

Not a Proud Indian

A Person  , A  Feminist and a  Human Rights Activist

April 15th, 2013

 

One billion rising for Soni Sori and all women prisoners till they are Free #Vaw #1billionrising


SONISORIOBR

March 1, 2013

Kamayani Bali Mahabal

I am  rising for an incarcerated tribal teacher Soni Sori , a  woman who juggled several roles – a tribal journalist, activist, teacher, mother of three young kids. A woman who dared to speak against the interests of the Chhattisgarh State and mining companies. A woman who did not succumb to the emotional, physical, sexual harassment targeted at breaking her spirits in the jail. She, instead, knocked at the conscience of the world outside.

She  began her fight against injustice in October 2011, when she was arrested on the charges of being a maoist supporter and brutally, physically and sexually tortured in custody by the Chhattisgarh police.

The announcement of the President’s Police Medal for Gallantry on 63rdRepublic day of India in 2012 for Ankit Garg, the SP of Dantewada is a reflection of the sad state of the Indian Republic .. It was shocking to see that a police officer who was accused of brutalising and torturing the young Adivasi teacher, Soni Sori, was lauded by the State even after reports of perversity of the worst kind in the way he reportedly ordered the torture of Sori in police custody.

ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE ONLINE

1)–Please sign a petition  to president of India to  take back his medal here

http://petitions.halabol.com/2013/01/21/take-back-president%E2%80%99s-police-medal-gallantry-awarded-ankit-garg

2—Endorse a letter to Sonia Gandhi for Soni Sori

Click here to endorse the letter

3)—Send soni sori a post card

Click here to see the details

4)- Light a candle for soni sori and all women prisoners

This is an online action created by Barduari Studios, an anonymous group, who thought it appropriate to develop something that anyone can use to reffirm their support to the Soni Sori Campaign.

Please light a candle for Soni Sori here: http://www.shareswf.com/game/29150/light-a-candle-for-soni-sori

And do change your facebook coverpage for atleast one day to the ‘light a candle before the Supreme Court‘ given in the banner album. You can also directly take it from our facebook page at www.facebook.com/onebillionrisingforsonisori

If you have blog webiste please embed below widget, its on sonis ori blog as well

Light a candle for soni sori you can embed a widget on your blog, copy and paste below, share widely

She fought back! She went on hunger strike in jail and protested against the human rights violations and the treatment by the Chhattisgarh Police; she wrote letters tot he court about the situation in prison and continues to speak out whenever she can.

Even after more than  a year, Soni has not received justice. Her struggle continues…

Soni Sori has become a symbol of mistreatment of all women prisoners .

Her fight for justice is not just for herself but also for others.

Her letters from Prison which spread like for fire for an International support on March 8th 2012

WE  Rise for Soni Sori because:

  1. Far from being an oppressed and downtrodden woman, as an outspoken critic of the state policies, the mining companies, and the Maoists, Soni Sori is being punished for exerting her democratic right to speak out indefence of her adivasi/ Indigenous  community and their traditional lands rather than for a crime she has not even been tried for.
  2. She is being punished by those who would not have the authority to mete out punishment even if she were guilty of a crime and the form of her punishments are not to be found in any penal code anywhere in the world.
  3. If the Indian government is not willing to protect women from the illegal actions of its own agents when in their custody, then what message is it sending out to Indian men – that women are fair game just for going out or speaking out?
  4. The Indian state not only seems to be failing to protect women from sexual and other types of violence, but is in fact sanctioning, indeed rewarding such crimes when they are committed by its employees and representatives to silence women who speak out in defence of human rights.

We Rise Because We Refuse To Support State Violence On Women.

We Rise Because Rape And Violence Against Women Under Any Circumstances is Unacceptable.

We Rise On This International Women’s Day To Demand Freedom for Soni Sori & Punishment For Her Perpetrators.

When: One Billion Rising on March 8th 2013.

Who: People of all gender with head, heart and a strong spine

Where: Here. There. Anywhere. Wherever we have such people.

What:  Organise your own ‘One Billion Rising’ action in your city, school, university, work place. Organise it any form you like. Or check the list of events on this page and join the one you can. Don’t worry If you are unable to make it to the streets, there are several online actions: petitions, letters to Indian government. But whatever you decide to do leave a message here so that others can join.

JOIN US ON FACEBOOK

https://www.facebook.com/OneBillionRisingforsonisori

CHECK EVENTS IN YOUR CITY, AND IF YOU DONT FIND ONE ADD , LETS STRIKE,AND PROTEST TOGETHER FOR SONI SORI

https://www.facebook.com/OneBillionRisingforsonisori/events

Make this post Viral : !!

#India- Sexual Harassment case- Mahatma Gandhi International Hindi University (MGIHU) #Vaw


 Adrienne Rich`s #Rape- but the hysteria in your voice pleases him best #poem #Vaw
हमेशा विवादों में रहनेवाले महात्मा गांधी अंतरराष्ट्रीय हिंदी विश्वविद्यालयवर्धा में आजकल एक अध्यापक द्वारा एक छात्रा के यौन-उत्पीड़न का मामला दबे मुंह चर्चा में है। साहित्य विभाग के एक युवा असिस्टेंट प्रोफेसर ने स्त्री अध्ययन विभाग की एक छात्रा को पढ़ाने के बहाने अपने घर बुलाकर उसके साथ कई बार शारीरिक छेड़छाड़ की और चुप रहने की धमकी भी दी। यहीं नहीं इस अध्यापक ने अपने प्रभावों का इस्तेमाल करके उस लड़की को एम.ए. कोर्स में फेल भी करा दिया।

यह अध्यापक इसी विश्वविद्यालय में साहित्य विभाग का पूर्व छात्र रहा है और छात्र जीवन से ही अपनी लंपटई  और कुकर्मों के लिए बदनाम है। सूत्रों की मानें तो इसके पहले भी यह कई लड़कियों के साथ ऐसे कुकृत्य कर चुका है। यह अध्यापक आए दिन लड़कों के हॉस्टल जाकर उनके साथ शराब-सिगरेट पीता हुआ पाया जाता है। सबसे मज़ेदार बात यह है कि यह आदमी अपने विभाग में स्त्री-विमर्श का टॉपिक पढ़ाता है। भुक्तभोगी लड़की द्वारा शिकायत करने के बाद महिला सेल में अभी इसकी जांच चल रही है। लेकिन पूरे कैंपस को पता है कि विश्वविद्यालय के कुलपतिजो अपने स्त्री-विरोधी और दलित-विरोधी रुख के लिए जाने जाते हैंउन्होंने लगातार पड़ते बाहरी दबाव के बाद महिला सेल को यह निर्देश दिया है कि इस मामले को रफा-दफा कर दिया जाए। महिला सेल की चल रही ढुलमुल जांच-प्रकिया को देखते हुए यह बात सच लग रही है

 कैंपस में सबको यह पता है आरोपी अध्यापक कुलपति के सामने जाकर अपनी गलती स्वीकार कर चुका है और पैर पकड़कर माफी भी मांग ली है। लड़की अल्पसंख्यक समुदाय की है और गरीब परिवार से है जबकि आरोपी ब्राह्मण वर्ग से है और इसका श्वसुर इस यूनिवर्सिटी में कर्मचारी रह चुका है। वह भी इस केस को खत्म करवाने के काम में जुटा हुआ है। कुछ लोग पैसे के लेन-देन की बात भी कह रहे हैं। बाकी इस वक्त विश्वविद्यालय के अधिकांश ब्राह्मण प्राध्यापक,कर्मचारी और छात्र आरोपी अध्यापक के समर्थन में खड़े हैं। कुछ प्रगतिशील छात्र-छात्राओं ने लड़की के पक्ष में हस्ताक्षर अभियान भी चलाया है। लेकिन कुलपति या महिला सेल पर उसका कोई असर नहीं है।

महिला सेल की अध्यक्षा साहित्य विभाग की हैं और गर्ल्सहॉस्टल की वार्डेन भी हैं। वार्डेन साहिबा केवल लड़कियों को परेशान करने और उनको सताने के लिए जानी जाती हैं। इस कैंपस में लड़कियां पहले से ही सुरक्षित नहीं हैं और इस घटना के बाद उनमें और डर व्याप्त है । आरोपी अध्यापक के खिलाफ जांच जारी है लेकिन वह अभी भी कक्षाएँ ले रहा हैजो कि गैर-कानूनी है।इस बीच वह जांच कमेटी के कुछ सदस्यों के घर जाकर चाय-नाश्ता भी कर चुका है।
इस घटना से आम छात्र-छात्राओं में काफी आक्रोश है। कैम्पस के बाहर भी माहौल गरम है। लेकिन इस विश्वविद्या

लय में केवल एक ही कानून चलता है और वह है कुलपति विभूति नारायण राय का और उनकी कृपा आरोपी अध्यापक पर है। सो मामला अब तक ठंडे बस्ते में है।

email from wardha university <save.mgahv@gmail.com

 

Open letter to Delhi Police for action against the police for sexual abuse, violence and initimidation #Vaw


Dated: February 9, 2013

 

 

OPEN LETTER TO DELHI POLICE AND OTHER AUTHORITIES

DEMANDING ACTION AGAINST THE POLICE

FOR SEXUAL ABUSE, VIOLENCE AND INTIMIDATION

 

Shri Neeraj Kumarji,

 

We, the undersigned individuals and organizations, are shocked by the reports of sexual harassment and sexual violence perpetrated by the police (in tacit association with some supporters of Narendra Modi), through its words, gestures and actions, on students who were protesting outside Shri Ram College of Commerce and at Maurice Nagar Police Station on February 6, 2013.

 

We are also dismayed by the vindictive, undemocratic and preemptive manner in which the police have filed ‘rioting’ and other criminal cases on February 7, 2013, against the protestors and victims of sexual harassment after they had filed FIRs against police harassment, while allowing the errant police personnel and others involved in taunting and beating up the protesting students to go free. The FIR is clearly meant to intimidate the students and frighten them into silence so that they do not file any further complaints against the criminal conduct of the police and Modi supporters. With the threat of criminal charges over their heads, if they so much as admit to being present at the protest to exercise their democratic rights, and especially when they are not guilty of any wrongdoing, students will be scared to complain against the ghastly sexual harassment.

 

On 6th of February, there was a large protest outside SRCC, Delhi University, against the invitation of and talk by Mr Modi by SRCC Students Union. The protest was organised by various students’ groups and individuals. The road in front of SRCC had 3 rows of barricades on each side, some of which were subsequently broken. Not only was the Delhi police  extremely vicious in their handling of the situation, their actions  were also  highly sexist and communal. They passed lewd remarks about women standing near the barricade. Some made kissing gestures and noises, asked women to come closer and talk to them. They also very openly stared and laughed at women in a way that was clearly sexist and disgusting, whistling and winking at and even groping the female students and beating them (and the boys) up sadistically with lathis. In addition water cannons were also used against them. They used the choicest abuses, with ‘kuttia’ (bitch) being among the mildest. When a woman student demanded that women police officers be present at the barricade as well to confront women students, she was told ‘aap aurat kahaan se hain’ (in what way are you a woman?). Women were also told repeatedly to give up as they were too weak to break barricades.

In all this harassment, students supporting Mr Modi and the police seemed to be  in connivance with each other, and literally amusing themselves in their harassment of the female protestors Some students (apparently from the ABVP) who were supporting Mr. Modi seemed to have the approval and indulgence of the police. They were allowed on the other side of the barricade. A few even climbed on to the police water cannons and danced on them as they were aimed at the protestors. Some openly threatened female students with Gujarat-like consequences – “Jo Gujarat mein huya vaise tujh me ghusa doonga” (Will thrust into you, as was  done in Gujarat), while brandishing a lathi and similar objects.  But none of these people was picked up by the police or detained. Instead, after lathi charging students, laughing and joking as they did so, the police engaged in picking up some of the anti-Modi protestors (including young women) and pushing them into a crowd of pro-Modi youth who then beat them in full view of the police. Some anti-Modi protestors were picked up and taken to the police station, and beaten up on the way (including on the head and groin with lathis). These included some students who had not crossed any barricades and were only shouting slogans and then protesting at the police behaviour. At the police station, women students who had come to enquire about others who had been picked up by the police were groped and felt up by the police when they tried to enter. (See a few eyewitness accounts in reference cited below)   

We are outraged by the sexually abusive and violent behaviour of men in uniform, behavior that has no place in discharge of the ‘law and order’ duties of police. This behaviour is offensive and unacceptable, especially coming from those entrusted with the task of protecting the citizenry, and is compounded manifold by the police actually aiding lumpen elements in sexual harassment of young women.

 

Coming in the wake of the recent horrific gang rape in Delhi, this raises huge questions and concerns about the safety of women in Delhi. How can young students ever have the confidence to approach the police to register complaints about sexual violence when policemen themselves indulge in this kind of sexual abuse and permit sexual intimidation in their very presence?

 

In the evening, when some of us learnt these details, we called up Ms. Sindhu Pillai DCP/North and spoke to her on the phone. She was in complete denial, extremely hostile and blamed the students themselves.  Our concerns were simply dismissed with a response that we should “file a complaint,” with justification of the actions of the police. However, in the light of subsequent events, the real intent behind this advice was possibly to identify more protestors so that the police could file criminal cases against the students. Whom should victims of police sexual violence turn to when even senior women officers of DCP rank harbour notions that girls should be “controlled” and should not be out protesting on the streets?  What is it if not a reflection of the mindset that girls invite trouble upon themselves by simply being out?

 

It is an extremely grave and worrisome reflection on the administration of the police force that nothing seems to have changed on the ground, even after tens of thousands protested on the streets of Delhi barely a month ago. How many more crimes will it take, how many more women will have to suffer harassment and violence, and die gruesome deaths, before the police reforms itself, and imbibes gender sensitivity, discipline and a sense of duty and responsibility towards the common citizens of this country? How can we ensure that the police just does its job?

 

The lack of accountability of the police is one of the significant reasons for the rampant sexual violence in the city and country. If there is any political will to stop this, it must manifest itself through :

  • ·        an immediate withdrawal of the vindictive and intimidatory police FIR which will deter any student from coming forward to complain against sexual harassment;
  • ·        suspension of errant officers (the concerned SHOs, ACP and DCP) pending a transparent, and public, inquiry by officers who inspire public confidence.

 

Prompt and strict action alone can end this impunity. We demand that the state and central governments demonstrate their intent and sincerity to make Delhi a safe place. 

 

  1. Prof. Malini Bhattacharya, Ex Chairperson, NCW
  2. Prof Uma Chakravarti (Retd), Delhi University
  3. Brinda Karat, Former MP, Rajya Sabha
  4. Prof Nandini Sundar, Delhi University
  5. Prof Utsa Patnaik (Retd),, JNU
  6. Prof.Vimal Thorat
  7. Githa Hariharan, Author
  8. Prof Zoya Hasan, JNU
  9. Prof Mary E John, Centre for Women’s Studies and Development
  10. Seema Mustafa, Centre for Policy Analysis
  11. Shabnam Hashmi, Anhad
  12. Sehba Faruqui, AIDWA
  13. Annie Raja, NFIW
  14. Kalpana Mehta, SAHELI
  15. Kavita Shrivastava, PUCL
  16. Vrinda Grover, Advocate
  17. Prof Satish Deshpande, Delhi University
  18. Prof Prabhat Patnaik (Retd), JNU
  19. Prof. Amiya Bagchi, Institute of Development Studies Kolkata
  20. Prof Kamal Mitra Chenoy, JNU
  21. Prof Anand Chakravarti (Retd), Delhi University
  22. Prof. Mukul Priyadarshini, Delhi University
  23. Prof. Rajni Palriwala, Delhi University
  24. Prof Dwijendra Nath Kalia, Delhi University
  25. Prof Sumangala Damodaran, Delhi University
  26. Prof Saumyajit Bhattacharya, Delhi University
  27. Prof Pragati Mahapatra, Delhi University
  28. Prof Ashwini Deshpande, Delhi University
  29. Prof Lata Singh, Delhi University
  30. Prof Shamsul Islam, Delhi University
  31. Prof Mona Das, Delhi University
  32. Prof Shashishekhar Singh, Delhi University
  33. Prof Inder Dutt, Delhi University
  34. Prof Tara Negi, Delhi University
  35. Prof Reyaz Ahmad, Delhi University
  36. Prof. Ravinder Jha, Delhi University
  37. Prof Rajiv Jha, Delhi University
  38. Jagmati Sangwan, AIDWA
  39. Prof Jayati Ghosh, JNU
  40. Prof Anuradha Chenoy, JNU
  41. Prof. Janaki Nair, JNU
  42. Prof Kumkum Roy, JNU
  43. Ranjana Nirula, CITU
  44. AR Sindhu, AIFAWH
  45. Prof SS Jodhka, JNU
  46. Prof. CP Chandrashekar, JNU
  47. Surajit Mazumdar, Ambedkar University, Delhi
  48. Prof Mritiunjoy Mohanty, IIM, Kolkata
  49. Ram Rahman, SAHMAT
  50. Prof. K J Mukherjee, JNU
  51. Prof. Praveen Jha, JNU
  52. Prof Mohan Rao, JNU
  53. Prof Girish Aggarwal, IIT, Delhi
  54. Arindam Banerjee, Ambedkar University, Delhi
  55. Nandini Rao
  56. Prof Ayesha Kidwai, JNU
  57. Prof Rohit, South Asian University (SAU)
  58. Smita Gupta, AIDWA
  59. Akhila Singh, Indian School of Women’s Studies and Development
  60. Prof. G Arunima, JNU
  61. Sadhna Arya
  62. Harsh Kapoor, South Asia Citizens Web
  63. Indira Chakravarthi, Women Against Sexual Violence & State Repression
  64. Prof. Archana Prasad, Jamia Millia Islamia
  65. Prof Vamsi Vakulabharanam, University of Hyderabad
  66. Shalini Gera, DU
  67. Prof Shamim Modi, TISS
  68. Justin Burrett (BCL)
  69. Mamata Dash, WSS, Delhi
  70. Komita Dhanda, JANAM
  71. Anurag Modi, Shramik Adivasi Sangthan
  72. Prof G Omkarnath, University of Hyderabad
  73. Asha Mishra (BGVS)
  74. Manoj Kulkarni (Tulika Samwad)
  75. Prof Anoop Saraya (AIIMS)
  76. Neelima Sharma (Artist)
  77. Sameer Dossani (Journalist)
  78. Dr Rahul Singh (Delhi)
  79. Dipa Sinha, JNU
  80. Shweta, JNU
  81. Sanjay Basu Mullick, All India Forum of Forest Movements (AIFFM)
  82. Zakia Soman, Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan
  83. Suneeta Dhar
  84. Madhu Bala
  85. Rahul Roy
  86. Kamayani Bali Mahabal ( Human rights lawyer and activist )
  87. Uma V. Chandru, WSS Karnataka
  88. Shraddha Chickeru
  89. Geetha Nambisan
  90. Elisabeth Armstrong
  91. Madhurima Nundy
  92. Prof. N. Raghuram, President, IPU Teachers Association
  93. Prof Vijita S Aggarwal, IP University
  94. Bhargavi Dilipkumar, Delhi Forum
  95. Prof Shalini Arora, IGIT
  96. Annie Jangam
  97. Sarvesh Tripathi USMC, IP University
  98. Prof. Chhaya Ravi Kant, IP University
  99. Nakul Sawhney
  100.   Prof Ritoo Jerath, JNU
  101.  Vimal Bhai, NAPM
  102.   Kiran Shaheen, Women for Water Democracy
  103.    Anurag Modi, Shramik Adivasi Sangathan
  104.   Warisha Farasat, Lawyer
  105. Anjali Sinha
  106.  Nalini Vishwanathan

 

#MUMBAI- One billion Rising for freedom from fear #1billionrising #reasontorise #vaw #menrise


meeta

By Kamayani Bali Mahabal, 13TH fEB 2013

tOMMORROW is   Februray  14  what does it stand stand for? Valentine day, right ?, no there is  another connotation attached to it, this year globallY it will be the  Violence free- day. The movement is aptly named ‘One Billion  Rising’, and it has been started by feminist writer, Eve Ensler, who
wrote and performed ‘The Vagina Monologues‘, 15 years ago.
The figure of one billion has been worked out on the basis of  available statistics that one out of three women on this earth will
experience violence in her lifetime, which means a staggering one  billion women on this planet would be impacted by violence. “Rise and  dance” is the vociferous message of One Billion Rising – a global campaign demanding the end of violence against women.On February 14, there will be 13, 000 organizations in  192 countries around the world  holding noisy, energetic events encouraging “activists, writers, thinkers, celebrities, women and men” to “strike, dance and rise”. In > India many cities and  groups are part of OBR both from urban and  rural areas

Women are not a homogenous group, The majority of the world’s poorest > people are women, who are further affected by discrimination if they  belong to minority groups. Women suffer disproportionately from  discriminatory labour practices and are frequently forced into  underground or informal sectors. Women who are discriminated against  on the basis of both gender and caste  are frequently subject to  violence. In armed conflicts, women are sometimes explicitly targeted  because of their ethnic background. Rape and other forms of violence  against women have been used as weapons of war in conflicts throughout history. Violence against women has been a major trope of the women’s > movement in India, right from the incidents of rape against women like  Mathura and Rameeza Bee in the 1970s. Over the last few months, especially after the Delhi Gang Rape , One Billion Rising campaign, we  have  revisited this theme , coming together to recommend to Justice  verma committee,. In  Mumbai  what t is unique about this is event  is  being ‘ most diverse and inclusive”, we have women representing variosy  marginalized sections of our society- the disabled, dalit, sexual > minorities, muslims ,participating to say  no to violence, and to also give a message that women with different needs have different rights

In  Mumbai , several woman organizations, youth groups and Bollywood  celebrities have come together to show  Mumbai’s ‘ solidarity towards  a violence-free city. The campaign one billion rising- Freedom from  fear, on 14th February will be the beginning of
These one billion rising- Freedom from fear is calling  all Mumbaikars  to join the mass event, which has rainbow hues of music, dance, poetry, and Rap.  Farhan Akhtar will be singing  and  reciting his  poem penned after the Delhi Gang Rape incident. Meeta
Vashisht will do an excerpt from the renowned performance of ‘ lal  dedh,   Young rappers including women rapper will showcase their talent on the  issue. and Swanmg group will perfomr. Maa ni main nahi darna .  Rahul Bose  would recite Man prayer.

Swaang cultural group will for the first time perform live tehir protest song maa ni meri which they wrote after delhi Gang Rape

The program  will end with the  flash dance Indian National anthem of ‘ break the  chains” adapted in Hindi. and we will dance on it

NOT TO MISS COME JOIN US ENTRY FREE

Youc an find video here

and the mP3 youc an find here

https://soundcloud.com/kractivist/one-billion-rising-indian

 In a patriarchal society like ours, the demands for a  non-discriminatory mindset and a gender sensitive society are not  going to be achieved in day or a month or even a year. It needs  consistent and self-directed actions by all of us without delaying or deferring the responsibility on each other, and one billion rising Freedom from fear is one such attempt towards a continuous process of changing mind sets . Let us make it a great event highlighting women’s rights and equality in the city, all are invited and entry is free

CALLING MUMBAI JOIN US

BANDRA AMPHITHEATRE, BANDSTAND, NEAR TAJ LANDSEND  5.30PM ONWARDS

for mroe information contact kamayani 9820749204

PL JOIN US ON FACEBOOK- https://www.facebook.com/OneBillionRisingMumbai

PL RSVP EVENT-https://www.facebook.com/events/158240337660310/

 

#India- The Criminal Law Ordinance on Sexual Assault – Cut, Paste and Shock #Vaw #womenrights


 #India- Chastity, Virginity, Marriageability, and Rape Sentencing #Vaw  #Justice #mustread

FEBRUARY 5, 2013

Guest post by PRATIKSHA BAXI 

Once the Criminal Law Ordinance 2013 was uploaded, circulated and read many times, an overwhelming desire to mark the ordinance to all one’s students as an example on how not to frame laws has grown. Yet, explain one must, why the current law on sexual assault is so bizarre, even if we do not bring in the so-called controversial elements and keep to the text of the ordinance.

The Criminal Law Ordinance 2013 begins with the definition of sexual assault as a gender-neutral offence. It does not make an exception to state that women do not rape men in everyday contexts under s. 375. Since such an exception is not added, and the ordinance specifies that ‘sexual intercourse or sexual acts by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under sixteen years of age, is not sexual assault’, we are faced with a confounding and deeply misogynist legal consequence. Wives, we are told cannot prosecute husbands for sexually assaulting them. But since sexual assault is gender neutral without any exceptions and the marital rape exemption is not extended to husbands, now husbands can accuse wives of sexual assault but wives can never prosecute husbands for sexual assault!

To retain the marital rape exemption strikes at the heart of women’s bodily autonomy and integrity. However, to limit the exemption to wives, and allow husbands the legal remedy to file criminal complaints against their wives on the ground of sexual assault is absolutely absurd, if not totally misogynist.

The Justice Verma Committee (JVC) report had come up with a clear formulation of rape and sexual assault. Rape in everyday contexts was not gender-neutral viz., perpetrators. It specified perpetrators of rape as men, and identified victims as gender plural (any person irrespective of gender or sexual orientation). In the instance of sexual assault, gangrape and aggravated rape [under s. 376 (1) & (2)], were constructed as gender-neutral offencesviz, perpetrators and victims. Furthermore, the marital rape exemption was deleted and it was recommended that marriage should neither be the basis for presuming consent nor should any third person than wife be allowed to lodge such a complaint (to address the misuse issue). In everyday contexts, especially in intimate relationships and marriages, this definition is sensitive to the power dynamics between men and women; while recognising that in prisons, police stations, custodial homes, hospitals, in fiduciary relationships and gang rape women may be perpetrators. It is critical to understand why this definition is important breakthrough in the debates on gender neutrality so far. This definition not only recognises the bodily autonomy of women but also recognises the bodily integrity of men (irrespective of sexual orientation or gendered identity) and transgendered persons. It does not split the victims into distinct categories based on identity and therefore avoids the medicalization of sexual identity. Given the heated debates on gender neutrality, the JVC managed to define rape as a crime of patriarchy, which is not limited to women as victims, although women have predominantly the target of sexual violence.

Some may argue that this definition still leaves out certain forms of violence, which find place in intimacy of a same sex relationship, or essentializes women. But remember, the JVC does not recommend the deletion of s. 377 IPC, nor do other forms of criminalisation of same sex relationships find redress. For instance, Modi (2011) describes lesbianism as tribadism and says “lesbian women can be so morbidly jealous of such woman with who they are inverted in love, that they are sometimes incited to commit even murder” (Modi 2011:684). These are statements of prejudice, which construct lesbians as a “criminal type”. And these find no redress.

The Criminal Law Ordinance 2013also juxtaposes gender neutrality with the retention of s. 377 IPC. To retain unnatural sexual offences in the IPC means to blur the distinction between consent and lack of consent, to validate the damning judicial discourse on sodomy and validate heterosexist bias against sexual minorities. Not to include the repeal of s. 377 in the ordinance, just because the JVC does not do so, and even though the 172nd Law Commission recommended such a deletion in 2000 is a scandal. It is unintelligible since s. 377 IPC characterises sexual assault as unnatural sex and does not allow any person to consent to “unnatural” sex. If the prime concern is with expanding the definition of consent; and ensuring bodily autonomy or providing protection from sexual assault to all persons, naming the experience of sexual violence as unnatural sex, or calling consensual sex, unnatural is illogical, if not ideologically violent.

Further, sexual assault is defined without any gradation of different offences, in terms of severity of violence or the nature of violence. Section 375 (a-c) defines as sexual assault as the penetration of bodily parts or other objects into bodily orifices without consent. Section 375 (d) holds that a person commits sexual assault if s/he ‘applies his mouth to the penis, vagina, anus, urethra of another person or makes such person to do so with him or any other person’ without consent. Section 375 (e) holds that when any person ‘touches the vagina, penis, anus or breast of the person or makes the person touch the vagina, penis, anus or breast of that person or any other person’ without consent, it amounts to sexual assault[note that the cut and paste job, evident from the word “he” to designate the perpetrator]. These are all forms of sexual assault “except where such penetration or touching is carried out for proper hygienic or medical purposes”.

The use of the word hygienic is totally mysterious, and dangerous—since it allows a crafty defence lawyer to convert the experience of sexual assault into a sanitized lesson in hygiene. Further, to allow penetration for medical purposes and not even minimally mention that a doctor must take the informed consent of the person prior to penetrating or touching is violative of elementary medical ethics. Nor does the ordinance delete the two-finger test. Therefore what it does is, it permits the insertion of two fingers in the survivor’s anus or vagina for medical purposes without seeking the consent of the survivor, which even Modi’s first volume on medical jurisprudence and toxicology would not advocate. The JVC recommends the prohibition on the two-finger test and introduces a whole new chapter on what kind of medical protocol should be introduced to deal with rape survivors sensitively. Rather than moving towards a therapeutic jurisprudence, the ordinance re-inscribes the two-finger as a medical procedure, disregarding what Modi says in the early days of colonial medicine, that a doctor should never insert two fingers in the vagina without consent lest he be accused of sexual assault!

To unravel the costs of cut and paste jurisprudence, we must note that the consequences of clubbing together different forms of sexual assault in the same sentencing structure. Hypothetically speaking, if a person is convicted of an offence under section 375 (e) which holds that when any person ‘touches the vagina, penis, anus or breast of the person or makes the person touch the vagina, penis, anus or breast of that person or any other person’ without consent twice, then such a person could be sentenced to life (natural life) or even death. Assuming such an accused is tried by a “hanging” judge, you have a situation where there is no gradation made between different kinds of sexual assault in relation to severity and nature, viz., sentencing. What is to prevent more severe punishment to a hijra, found to be a repeat offender, given the colonial legacy of charactering certain kinds of bodies as “criminal types”? There are no provisions to provide fair treatment to, and prevent stereotyping of sexual minorities or women in the sentencing structure.

The only instance where such gradation viz., sentencing is maintained is in relation to marital rape. Hence, section 376B IPC holds that ‘whoever commits sexual assault on his own wife, … shall be punished with imprisonment of either description, for a term which shall not be less than two years but which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine’. The ordinance is clearly protection of husbands, even those husbands who rape their ex-wives. This is also evident in the section,describing repeat offenders, which clearly excludes husbands.

Section 376E holds ‘whoever has been previously convicted of an offence punishable under section 376 or section 376 A or section 376 C or section 376 D and is subsequently convicted of an offence punishable under any of the said sections shall be punished with imprisonment for life, which shall mean the remainder of that person’s natural life or with death’. So the ordinance is clear that whoever else may get life imprisonment till s/he dies in prison or is hanged by the state, a husband should never be jailed for life or hanged. But the irony is, if a man accuses his wife of sexual assault, and if she is found to be a repeat offender by a court, she is liable to life or death penalty. One may argue that this is far fetched for why would a woman live with a man who has accused her of sexual assault but technically what this ordinance does, it makes wives vulnerable to sexual assault charges by their husbands and exposes them to prison sentences, if not death.

The cut and paste job gets even more bizarre for the JVC recommendations are added to s. 354 IPC rather than displacing the colonial law on outraging modesty. Section 354 (a) describes sexual harassment (gender neutral offence), section 354 (b) describes any person forcibly disrobing a woman, section 354 (c) describes voyeurism (victim is woman here) and section 354 (d) describes stalking (gender neutral). And section 509 IPC, which should be made redundant is retained.

It does not make sense to retain the idea that something amounts to violence only when the modesty of women is outraged, and not the bodily integrity of all women, irrespective of modesty. This is the point behind deleting the past sexual history clause and fighting against the characterisation of survivors as habitués: please do not judge women by whether or not they are modest. What we wear, who we sleep with, where we go, what work we do—is not relevant to proving sexual assault.

And then mistakes of an exhausted and overwrought JVC find their way into the ordinance, yet another cut and paste jurisprudential disaster. In s. 370, which describes trafficking, we are told that:

“The expression “exploitation” shall include, prostitution or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude, or the forced removal of organs.”

The JVC possibly forgot to add the words “exploitation of” prostitution, while mistakenly dictating the UN protocol 2000, going against the UN Protocol signed in 2011. The trafficking clause, due to exhausted dictating, criminalises all forms of sex work, including in trafficking voluntary and consenting sex workers who are now unionised and been fighting for right to live with dignity. This provision has been enacted in the name of fighting sexual assault—and is totally unacceptable. Perhaps the JVC should issue an erratum—and re-publish its 650 pages after careful proof reading!

What may one say about the absences—those are too many to list! We wanted radical jurisprudence, to emerge from our protests and unending hard work (and unlike others, we don’t need anyone to applaud us). Instead, what we got is amortifying cut and paste jurisprudential disaster. We cannot sleep tonight, wonder how the Ministry of Law finds sleep tonight!

Pratiksha Baxi is Assistant Professor, Centre for the Study of Law and Governance, Jawaharlal Nehru University

#Mumbai- Gang Raped twice Dalit girl is firm in resolve to make it big #Vaw


VINAYA DESHPANDE, The Hindu

72-year-old house-owner had promised to put the domestic help in school; 18-year-old male servant also assaulted her

The 13-year-old came here last year, resolved to study and make it big. Her 35-year-old mother of four, who is unemployed, widowed and illiterate, sent her to the city from a small hamlet in Satna district of Madhya Pradesh, hoping that her earnings would help to sustain the family. But Damayanti Koda (the name changed) is a distraught woman today.

“They promised me that they would put her in a good school if she came here and helped the family. They also got two new dresses stitched for her. I was very happy that my child would be spared the grind of poverty. I thought she would also help me feed the three mouths in the house. But look at what they have done to her. I will not send her anywhere now,” a teary-eyed Damayanti told The Hindu.

Her daughter Saraswati (the name changed) was gang-raped twice by the 72-year-old house-owner and an 18-year-old male servant in December last in the house where she worked as a domestic help. A family friend of the accused had brought Saraswati from the hamlet to Kalyan in Thane district in July, promising the mother that she would be sent to school, given food and shelter in lieu of some household help for the pregnant daughter-in-law of the accused.

Around eight months ago, when Damayanti had come to drop her daughter at the house, she was charmed by their riches. “They have a sprawling house with two floors. They also have land in the area. After their friend offered to pay my daughter Rs. 2, 000 a month and promised to put her in school, I said, what will I do keeping her in poverty here? How am I to feed four children when I myself cannot work?” she said.

Her husband, a daily labourer, died three years ago after undergoing an operation to remove kidney stones. Damayanti has herself undergone an operation to remove stones from her gall bladder. The surgery has left her weak and frail, unable to work, depending on her parents and brother for support. The family has already borrowed money from relatives to pay up the medical expenses.

Her eldest daughter has studied up to Standard X and works as a domestic help in the village. Saraswati studied up to Standard VII before leaving school to go to Kalyan. Her two younger brothers are in school.

“When I came here, I was in awe of the family. They are rich. They kept me well. Bhabhiji promised me that she would send me to school. But two months after my coming here, there were no signs of it. They made me work continuously, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. I did not complain,” Saraswati said.

Within two months, she started facing the lusty eyes of the house-owner, the girl alleged. He would frequent the place where she slept and touch her when she was asleep. He would even grab her when she worked alone in a room. When she complained to his daughter-in-law, she was beaten up and asked to keep quiet, Saraswati said.

Emboldened, the accused, along with an 18-year-old male servant, raped her on two occasions in December. When she cried, begging for help, they threatened her with dire consequences.

“They did not even allow me to call home … I was beaten up and threatened. One day, I was taken in a car, and they told me that the male servant who raped me would marry me after I turned 18. I refused it. They beat me up again and threatened to kill me, so I said yes,” she said. But the feisty girl managed to call up her mother one day and asked her to take her home immediately.

“I sent my nephew from Nashik within two days after I received a call from her,” Damayanti said. While her nephew picked up Saraswati from the house on January 2 this year, she came to the city only by January-end. With the help of an organisation named Hindu Rashtrasena, the family lodged a complaint with the Kalyan police on January 28 against the alleged rapists, the daughter-in-law and the woman who got Saraswati from Madhya Pradesh. While the two men are behind bars, the two women are yet to be arrested.

The police filed a case under Sections 376(2)(g), 506, 34 of the Indian Penal Code; Sections 4 and 12 of the Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences Act; Sections 23 and 26 of the Juvenile Justice Act; and Section 3(1)(xi) of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

A medical examination established that it was a case of rape, the police said.

Now Saraswati wants to put the past behind her. The sparkling eyes have turned dull and the smile disappears when someone talks about the incident.

When asked about it, she skirts the topic. “I want to go back to the village and study. I want to do a job and earn well,” she says. She and her mother do not see any point in their staying back to get justice.

“I have four children to take care of. How can I stay back? We want to forget about it. Our family honour has been lost … We don’t want anyone to know about it,” Damayanti said. Getting Saraswati married in the next three-four years is her priority.

But Saraswati is firm in her resolve to study and make a good future for herself.

 

#India – Changes in Criminal Law vs Justice Verma Recommendations #Vaw


Changes to law will clearly define unwelcome sexual acts

TNN | Feb 2, 2013, 04.25 AM IST

NEW DELHI: Changes to the criminal law dealing with offences against women cleared by the Cabinet aim to not only add specific new crimes but move the focus from interpreting terms like “modesty of a woman” to clear cut definitions of unwelcome sexual acts.

The government has acted on the Justice J S Verma committee’s view that provisions dealing with sexual assault need to be looked at afresh in the light of the need to cover a range of offences that need a higher degree of punishment.

Intentional contact intended to harass a person or threat of sexual violence will be dealt with under the enhanced definition of sexual assault that seeks to plug loopholes exploited by offenders seeking to argue subjectively on what constitutes “outraging the modesty of a woman”.

The government, however, did not accept the Verma committee’s view on criminalizing marital non-consensual intercourse. The issue of rape by armed forces as a specific category was also not accepted.

The pending Criminal Law Amendment Bill, 2012 criminalizes sexual activities between the age of 16 to 18 years with which the Verma committee did not agree. This will mean that once the bill is passed, age of consent will become 18.

Acid attacks, a frequently reported crime often motivated by desire for revenge on an advance being rejected or a relationship souring, are seen in the context of the long-term impairment caused to a victim’s right to live with dignity.

Besides the act of throwing acid on a woman, the permanent or partial damage caused to the victim should be taken into account, the Verma committee had recommended.

Just like acid attacks, public disrobing of women is often resorted to as an act of vengeance for being spurned. Additionally, caste prejudice and women being relatively defenceless victims for enmity harboured with male members of a family also lead to disrobing.

Stalking has been seen by the Verma committee as an act that can curb a woman’s right to freedom of expression and even education in terms of younger victims. The specific offence will deal with acts of electronic intrusion and hacking. It will also address attempts to foist unwelcome attention and threat of violence.

The tough and graded punishments for rape, rape that results in severe physical damage and rape that leads to death are important amendments that have been dealt with. Aggravated rape will be punishable with 20 years jail or life term than will mean till the extent of natural life.

Changes in laws dealing with evidence are particularly significant. The question of moral character will not be put to a woman during cross-examination and there will be a presumption of lack of consent in certain prosecution cases.

Just as moral character will not be factor, neither will the sexual history or experience of a victim be deemed relevant in adjudging whether sexual assault has been committed.

This will mean that if sexual intercourse is established by the prosecution, the issue that will need to be evaluated is one of consent.

JUSTICE VERMA COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS  INDIAN PENAL CODE (1860) 
AcceptedSection 354: Sexual Assault and Punishment for Sexual Assault – Entirely accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 100:
Only Right to Private Defence— Inclusion of an acid attack u/s 326A was accepted and the rest proposed was already existing in the IPC
Not Accepted | Section 376A: 
Sexual abuse by husband upon his wife during separation—Verma Committee wanted to delete it. Was retained by MHA as marital rape was not agreed to.
Accepted | Section 354A: Assault or use of criminal force on woman with intent to disrobe her – Entirely Accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 166A:
Public Servant disobeying direction under law – Directions relating to crimes against women proposed to be made punishable upto only one year against the recommended five years as proposed by Justice Verma Committee. Rest accepted
Not Accepted | Section 376B (1): 
Rape of an Underage Person – Not accepted as the provision is in conflict with the PCSOA, 2012
Accepted | Section 354 B:
Voyeurism – Entirely accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 326A:
Voluntarily causing grievous hurt through use of acid etc. – Female circumcision proposed was not accepted. – Compensation adequate to meet at least the medical expenses incurred by the victim was not accepted. Rest was accepted
Not Accepted | Section 376 B(2) 
Punishment for causing death or a persistent vegetative state in the course of committing rape of an underage person – Death penalty was not recommended
Accepted | Section 354 C (1):
Stalking – Entirely accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 326B:
Voluntarily throwing or attempting to throw acid etc. – Compensation adequate to meet at least the medical expenses incurred by the victim was not accepted. Rest was accepted
Not Accepted | Section 376F: 
Offence of breach of Command Responsibility – Fixes vicarious criminal responsibility on the leader of a force for acts of subordinates. Not accepted
Accepted | Section 354C (2)
Punishment for stalking – Definition entirely accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 375 Rape – Gender Neutrality of the act was not recommended which was not accepted by MHA. The Bill criminalizes the sexual activities between 16 and 18 years which the Verma Committee did not agree. Verma Committee criminalizes marital non-consensual sexual intercourse which is not accepted. Rest of the recommendations were accepted
Accepted | Section 370 Trafficking of a Person – Entirely accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 376 (1) Punishment for Rape – Payment of compensation to the victim was dropped. Rest of the recommendation was accepted
Accepted | Section 370 A Employing a Trafficked Person – Punishment entirely accepted
Accepted in parts | Section 376 (2)
Aggravated Rape – Payment of compensation to the victim was dropped. Rest of the recommendations were accepted
Accepted | Section 376A
(re-numbered as 376B) Sexual intercourse by a Person in Authority – Accepted in full
Accepted in parts | Section 376 (3)
Punishment for causing death or a persistent vegetative state in the course of committing rape – Death penalty was preferred by MHA. Rest of the recommendations were accepted
Accepted | Section 376C Gangrape – Accepted entirely
Accepted in parts | Section 376D
Gang rape causing death or a persistent vegetative state shall be added: Death penalty was preferred by MHA. Rest of the recommendations were accepted
Accepted | Section 376E
Punishment for Repeat Offenders – Accepted entirely
Accepted | Section 509: Repeal accepted as offences covered elsewhere
CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CODE 1973
Accepted | Section 54A: Proviso to Section 54A regarding identification of arrestee by a disabled person – Accepted entirely
Accepted in parts | Proviso to Section 154 Registration of an Offence – Provision to record evidence by police officer at the residence of the person reporting the offence. Mandatory videographing was not agreed to and converted to optional
Not Accepted | Section 39(1) Clause (vb) – Compel communication of information of offence relating to crimes against women to the nearest Magistrate – Not accepted as it is liable to be misused
Accepted | Section 160: No male below 18 and above 65 years and woman or physically disabled shall be required to attend a police station
Accepted in parts | Section 164 (5) (a) and (6)(b) Recording statement by a magistrate – Special assistance for mentally or physically disabled persons to be given by magistrate. Statement of mentally or physically disabled person to be considered sufficient for examination-in-chief and cross examination. However, mandatory videography not agreed to and changed to optional
Not Accepted | Section 40A: 
Intimation by the panchayat member the communication of information of offence relating to crimes against women to the nearest magistrate—Not accepted as it is liable to be misused
Accepted | Section 198B:
Cognizance of an offence u/s 376(1) when persons are in marital relationship
Not Accepted | Section 197(1)
Sanction for prosecution – No
sanction would be required for prosecution of judge or magistrate or public servant if accused of crimes against women. Not agreed to avoid false complaints
Accepted | Proviso to Section 273:
Recording of evidence of a victim below 18 years – Victim will not be confronted by the accused. Accepted in full
Not Accepted | Section 357(4) 
Compensation to victim – Payment of compensation of an amount adequate to meet atleast the medical expenses incurred by the victim. This is not acceptable as the compensation would be very low. The Bill has a better provision
Accepted | Section 327:
Substitution of new offences defined for rape (376A, 376B, 376C, 376D) – Technical formality
THE INDIAN EVIDENCE ACT, 1872
Accepted | Section 53A: Evidence of character of previous sexual experience not relevant in certain cases – Fully accepted
Accepted | Section 114A:
Presumption as to the absence of consent in certain prosecution for sexual assault – Fully accepted
Accepted | Section 119: Dumb witness substituted by ‘persons who are unable to communicate verbally – Fully accepted
Accepted | Proviso in Section 146:
Question regarding the moral character will not be put to the victim during cross examination – Fully accepted
ARMED FORCES (SPECIAL POWERS) ACT, 1958
Not AcceptedProviso to Section 6: No sanction would be required if the armed force personnel is accused of a crime against woman

 

 

#India- A moment of triumph for women #justiceverma #Vaw #womenrights


KALPANA KANNABIRAN,The Hindu

The comprehensive reforms suggested by Justice Verma and his colleagues will protect the right to dignity, autonomy and freedom of victims of sexual assault and rape

Starting with Tarabai Shinde’s spirited defence of the honour of her sister countrywomen in 1882, women’s movements in India have been marked by persistent and protracted struggles. But despite this rich and varied history, we have in recent weeks found ourselves shocked at the decimation of decades of struggle.

A TRANSFORMATION

At a time when despair and anger at the futility of hundreds of thousands of women’s lifetimes spent in imagining a world that is safe drive us yet again to the streets; at a time when our daughters get assaulted in the most brutal ways and our sons learn that unimaginable brutality is the only way of becoming men; at a time when we wonder if all that intellectual and political work of crafting frameworks to understand women’s subjugation and loss of liberty through sexual terrorism has remained imprisoned within the covers of books in “women’s studies” libraries; at a time like this, what does it mean to suddenly find that all is not lost and to discover on a winter afternoon that our words and work have cascaded out of our small radical spaces and transformed constitutional common sense?

The Report of the Committee on Amendments to Criminal Law headed by Justice J.S. Verma is our moment of triumph — the triumph of women’s movements in this country. As with all triumphs, there are always some unrealised possibilities, but these do not detract from the fact of the victory.

Rather than confining itself to criminal law relating to rape and sexual assault, the committee has comprehensively set out the constitutional framework within which sexual assault must be located. Perhaps more importantly, it also draws out the political framework within which non-discrimination based on sex must be based and focuses on due diligence by the state in order to achieve this as part of its constitutional obligation, with the Preamble interpreted as inherently speaking to justice for women in every clause.

If capabilities are crucial in order that people realise their full potential, this will be an unattainable goal for women till such time as the state is held accountable for demonstrating a commitment to this goal. Performance audits of all institutions of governance and law and order are seen as an urgent need in this direction.

The focus of the entire exercise is on protecting the right to dignity, autonomy and freedom of victims of sexual assault and rape — with comprehensive reforms suggested in electoral laws, policing, criminal laws and the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, and the provision of safe spaces for women and children.

Arguing that “cultural prejudices must yield to constitutional principles of equality, empathy and respect” (p.55), the committee, in a reiteration of the Naaz Foundation judgment, brings sexual orientation firmly within the meaning of “sex” in Article 15, and underscores the right to liberty, dignity and fundamental rights of all persons irrespective of sex or sexual orientation — and the right of all persons, not just women, against sexual assault.

Reviewing leading cases and echoing the critique of Indian women’s groups and feminist legal scholars — whether in the case of Mathura or even the use of the shame-honour paradigm that has trapped victim-survivors in rape trials and in khap panchayats, the committee observes: “…women have been looped into a vicious cycle of shame and honour as a consequence of which they have been attended with an inherent disability to report crimes of sexual offences against them.”

In terms of the definition of rape, the committee recommends retaining a redefined offence of “rape” within a larger section on “sexual assault” in order to retain the focus on women’s right to integrity, agency and bodily integrity. Rape is redefined as including all forms of non-consensual penetration of sexual nature (p.111). The offence of sexual assault would include all forms of non-consensual, non-penetrative touching of sexual nature. Tracing the history of the marital rape exception in the common law of coverture in England and Wales in the 1700s, the committee unequivocally recommends the removal of the marital rape exception as vital to the recognition of women’s right to autonomy and physical integrity irrespective of marriage or other intimate relationship. Marriage, by this argument, cannot be a valid defence, it is not relevant to the matter of consent and it cannot be a mitigating factor in sentencing in cases of rape. On the other hand, the committee recommended that the age of consent in consensual sex be kept at 16, and other legislation be suitably amended in this regard.

VOICES FROM CONFLICT ZONES

Rights advocates in Kashmir, the States of the North-East, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat and other areas that have witnessed protracted conflict and communal violence have for decades been demanding that sexual violence by the armed forces, police and paramilitary as well as by collective assault by private actors be brought within the meaning of aggravated sexual assault. This has been taken on board with the committee recommending that such forms of sexual assault deserve to be treated as aggravated sexual assault in law (p. 220). Specifically, the committee recommends an amendment in Section 6 of the AFSPA, 1958, removing the requirement of prior sanction where the person has been accused of sexual assault.

Clearly a sensitive and committed police force is indispensable to the interests of justice. But how should this come about? There have been commissions that have recommended reforms, cases that have been fought and won, but impunity reigns supreme. If all the other recommendations of the Committee are carried through, will the government give even a nominal commitment that the chapter on police reforms will be read, leave alone acted on?

THE DELHI CASE

The recent gang rape and death of a young student in Delhi has raised the discussion on the question of sentencing and punishment yet again. The first set of questions had to do with the nature and quantum of punishment. Treading this issue with care, the committee enhances the minimum sentence from seven years to 10 years, with imprisonment for life as the maximum. On the death penalty, the committee has adopted the abolitionist position, in keeping with international standards of human rights, and rejected castration as an option. The second question had to do with the reduction of age in respect of juveniles. Despite the involvement of a juvenile in this incident, women’s groups and child rights groups were united in their view that the age must not be lowered, that the solution did not lie in locking them up young. Given the low rates of recidivism, the committee does not recommend the lowering of the age, recommending instead, comprehensive institutional reform in children’s institutions.

The report contains comprehensive recommendations on amendments in existing criminal law, which cannot be detailed here except in spirit. The significance of the report lies, not so much in its immediate translation into law or its transformation of governance (although these are the most desirable and urgent), but in its pedagogic potential — as providing a new basis for the teaching and learning of the Constitution and criminal law and the centrality of gender to legal pedagogy.

(Kalpana Kannabiran is Professor and Director, Council for Social Development, Hyderabad. Email:kalpana.kannabiran@gmail.com)

 

#India- UP judge accused of molesting two girls in his office #WTFnews #Vaw #judgemolester


 #India-Towards a Decisive Victory in the Historic Battle for Women’s Rights

Reported by Anant Zanane, Edited by Sindhu Manjesh | Updated: January 23, 2013

Gonda, Uttar PradeshA judge in Uttar Pradesh has been accused of molesting two girls in his chambers at a court in  Gonda district, a two-hour drive from the capital of  Lucknow.

The two separate incidents allegedly took place on Monday.

The girls filed independent police complaints in which they allege that the judge made them undress and touched them inappropriately, claiming that he was trying to determine whether they are minors or younger than 18.

The girls were deposing before the judge in two separate cases of kidnapping that were lodged by their families after they had allegedly eloped. They had been summoned before the court to give their statements, which would have been used as evidence.

The police says that to register a case against the judge, it needs permission from the Allahabad High Court, which is awaited.

Lawyers boycotted the court in Gonda and vandalised the judge’s chambers, demanding his arrest.