PRESS RELEASE- Statement of Protest and Demand for withdrawal of Gallantry award to SRP Kalluri


  25th January 2013

We, the undersigned, are appalled at the conferment of the President’s Police Medal for Meritorious Service to SRP Kalluri, IGP of Chhattisgarh.  Mr Kalluri raped a tribal woman, Ledha Bai, when he was the SP of Sarguja District, ordered her gang-rape by his juniors, and then terrorized her and her lawyer when she decided to file a complaint against him.  Coming on the heels of the award of the President’s Gallantry medal to Ankit Garg, who had sexually assaulted another tribal woman in his custody, Soni Sori, it appears that sexual violence against women by the police is well tolerated, and even decorated, by the government. Is it any wonder then, that we are witnessing a spiraling increase in crimes against women?

Ledha Bai is a tribal woman who was married to Ramesh Nagesia, a member of the CPI(Maoists).  Under advice from the police, she convinced her husband to surrender himself to the police. But, the police team, lead by the then-SP of Sarguja, Mr. SRP Kalluri, went to the pre-assigned meeting place and shot the unarmed Ramesh Nagesia dead, in front of his wife Ledha.  Ledha was allowed to live, but with the caveat that she would not tell anyone about this episode.  However, a few days later, Ledha, her 2 year old child and her parents were rounded up and taken to the police station. There, Ledha was stripped and raped by Mr. Kalluri, and green chillies were inserted into her vagina in front of her parents and daughter.  Under orders from Mr Kalluri, SPO Dhiraj Jaiswal and others gangraped her in police custody for about 10 days.  All this has been documented by several fact-finding teams and was also corroborated by Ledha’s statement in front of a magistrate.

When Ledha tried to lodge a complaint against Mr. Kalluri, she and her father were intimidated to the extent that they had to withdraw the complaint, and instead, false charges were filed against the lawyer who had helped her file the complaint.

Mr. Kalluri is well-known for the reign of terror he let loose in Sarguja district as its SP, under the pretext of fighting Maoists.  Extra-judicial killings were frequent, such as the one of Narayan Khairwar, and anyone who raised a voice against this was victimized.  Even a Rozgar Yatra led by the eminent economist Jean Dreze was subjected to a  lathi-charge, on account of being constituted of suspected Maoists.

Later on, Mr. Kalluri was transferred to Dantewada as Senior Superintendent of Police.  His authoritarian rule continued there, and activists and ordinary tribals were subjected to endless harassment under his orders.  Himanshu Kumar, a well-known Gandhian activist opposing Salwa Judum, had his ashram demolished and was forced to flee from Dantewada.  Mr. Kalluri held a press conference announcing the well-respected international organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross and Doctors without Borders, were helping Maoists.  In another press conference, he announced that Lingaram Kodopi, a 20 year old journalism student in NOIDA who had addressed public meetings in Delhi talking about the reign of terror in Dantewada under Salwa Judum and Operation Green Hunt, was in fact a spokesperson for the CPI(Maoist) and had masterminded a Naxalite attack in Dantewada while sitting in Delhi.  Linga’s aunt, Soni Sodi, another outspoken tribal woman, was harassed by having multiple false cases lodged against her, and her husband arrested in another false case.  Any tribal activist, other than those working for the ruling party, were arrested and thrown into jail.  Consequently, CPI was forced to write a letter of protest to the Prime Minister, complaining of the witch hunt of their party workers under Mr. Kalluri’s reign, more than a dozen of whom were arrested and many of whom still continue to languish in jail. Kartam Joga, an elected Janpad member of the CPI, who had filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court against Salwa Judum, was similarly picked up on spurious charges and has just been released after 29 months in prison.

In March 2011, SPOs torched three villages in Dantewada district. As Swami Agnivesh was attempting to deliver relief to these villages, police sealed off these areas and attacked the convoy along with Swami ji and accompanying journalists.  The uproar created in the wake of this incident forced the Chhattisgarh government to transfer Mr. Kalluri out of this area.

In view of these crimes committed by Mr. Kalluri, we are unable to understand what constitutes meritorious service in the eyes of our government.  We demand that the medal be immediately withdrawn.

Signed by –

Shabnam Hashmi, Social Activist

Sudha Bharadwaj, Advocate

Shalini Gera, Activist

Nandini Sundar, Academic

Himanshu Kumar, Gandhian activist

Indira Chakravarti

Bela Bhatia, Academic

Kalpana Mehta

Kamayani Bali Mahabal, Feminist and human rights activist, Mumbai

Vrinda Grover, Advocate

Ram Punyani, Scientist and Activist

Mansi Sharma, Activist

Naish Hasan, Activist, Lucknow

Sheba George, Activist, Gujarat

Mahtab Alam, Activist and Journalist

Manisha Sethi, Activist-Academician

Sanghamitra Misra, Activist-Academician

Syed Zafar Mehdi, Journalist

Dr. John Dayal, All India Christian Council & Member, National Integration Council, GoI

Ahmed Sohaib, Activist-Academician

Aslam Khan, Activist, Delhi

Kavita Srivastava, PUCL

Navaid Hamid, member, Member, National Integration Council, GoI

S R Darapuri, former DGP Police

Annie Raja, National Federation of Indian Women

Zakia Soman, Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Andolan

Zulaikha Zabeen, Journalist, Raipur

Sucheta De, AISA

Asad Zaidi, Three Essays Collective

Vinay Bhatt, Activist

Shaheen Nazar, Senior Journalist

Harsh Dobhal, Human Rights Law Network (HRLN)

Kavita Krishnan, All India Progressive Women Association (AIPWA)

Reena Philipm, Activist, Kerala

Reny Ayline, NCHRO

Purva Bhardwaj, Activist and Researcher

Prof. Apoorvanand, Delhi University

Kumar Sundaram, CNDP

Lateef Mohd Khan, CLMC, Hyderabad

Jay N Jayram, Researcher and Journalist

Seema Mustafa, Senior Journalist

Dilip Simeon, Academician

Aijaz Zaka Syed, Writer and Columnist

Prakash K Ray, Researcher

Irshadul Haque, Editor,

Iftikhar Gilani, Senior Journalist

Seela Mahapatra & Madhuresh Kumar, NAPM

Prasad Chako

Utkarsh Sinha

Jawed Naqvi, Senior Journalist

Vineet Tiwari, Gen Sec, M P PWA

Meera Ahmed, University of Delhi

1. Fact finding report on Ledha’s custodial rape
2. Affidavit filed by Swami Agnivesh in Supreme Court
3. Account of attack on Jean Dreze and Rozgar Yatra
4. Letter from CPI to the PM


JAN 26,2013





While, we women groups are still fighting for more than a year to strip S P  Ankit garg, of gallantry award given to him on Jan 26,2012,  as no one heard including NHRC, NCW, we started again the  pettion online to  President of India  with more than 500 signatures Here comes the news,  S R P Kalluri , INSPECTOR GENERAL OF POLICE, RAIPUR,CHHATTISGARH  , another rapist cop, whose reputation surpases that of S P Ankit Garg has been decorated with a gallantry award  for Jan 26, 2013, the 64th Republic day of India.

In  July 2012, Kalluri named one Lingaram Kopodi as the mastermind of a Maoist attack. Kopodi turned out to be a journalism student in Noida Kalluri’s tenure in Dantewada has coincided with a string of horror stories. In  February 2011, Kalmu, an 18-year-old insurance agent with Bajaj Allianz, was picked up, beaten, locked up for 21 days and accused of being the mastermind of the killing in the murga bazaar kaand. The “kaand” is how villagers around Sukma remember the events of January 24, when Ismail Khan, the leader of a group of SPOs, was shot dead.All hell broke loose after the killing. “The SPOs began to indiscriminately round up and beat the adivasis. The entire market downed shutters and rushed home.

This notorious police officer  has been  intimidating and torturing innocent tribals and ultimately pushing them to the fold of the Maoists.
S.R.P. Kalluri,  has been implicated in Custodial rape of Ledha Bai and murder of her husband, Police beatings in Ambikapur,  Lathicharge of Rozgar Adhikar Yatra (March for Right to Employment), custodial torture, fake encounters and Intimidation of Lawyers. Kalluri has been promoted regularly , promptly , now he has been given Presiendents Gallantry  Award, for these meritious services ? Mr President ??



 S R P KALLURI AND custodial death and rape of tribal woman in Sarguja dist of Chattisgarh

The incident: Ledha a tribal woman was married to Ramesh Nageshia, who was a member of a Maoist party. Some time back she was arrested on the charge of being a squad member and having participated in a land mine blast that killed three CRPF personnel. After spending one and a half years in jail and having delivered a child in this period, she was finally acquitted from the case.

After the acquittal she was advised by her advocate to show her acquittal order to the police to prevent harassment in future. When she went to the police for this, she was pressurized to make her husband surrender. She was offered money and job if she did that. She was told that her husband at the most would face imprisonment.

The S.P of Sarguja District, S.R.P.Kalluri arranged for the surrender on 28th May 2006. As per his plans, the police force from Shankergarh, led by Mr. Kalluri himself, started off on the task. An additional force joined them in Kusmi. Ledha accompanied them. They got down from the vehicles in Kasmaar and went up to Civildagh village on foot. Ramesh Nageshia was waiting there. The police beat him up black and blue. Then S.P. Kalluri asked both of them to sit in the Gram Panchayat secretary’s house. As the two were sitting there, the Assistant Platoon Commander Brijesh Tiwari of the Special Armed Forces came into the house. He suddenly shot Ramesh at point blank range. Ramesh died on the spot.

Ledha was then brought to S.P Kalluri. He ordered the policemen to kill her also. But someone said why kill her, she was after all a woman. Everyone laughed at this. She was taken to Shankergarh Police station and let off from there after thoroughly terrorizing her of dire consequences if she revealed the killing of her husband outside.

The news papers reported the incident as killing of a naxalite in Shankergarh Police Station limits in an encounter.

Ledha went back to her relatives’ place and did not dare to come out for some days. On going back to her village on 30th September 2006, she came to know that the police were searching for her. She was picked up by the police on Dusserah. In the police station she was asked to remove her clothes. On refusing, her parents were also brought there and her father was severely beaten up. S.P Kalluri came and slapped her on her face. Ledha fell on the ground along with her child; she was then raped by S.P. Kulluri in front of her child who was crying uncontrollably and the old parents begging him to leave her. The SP also inserted green chillies into to her vagina. She was kept in the lock up and the next day Dheeraj Jaiswal, the S.P.O came to her along with four other constables in a drunken state. They all gang raped her. This went on for ten days. All this happened in front of her child. Finally she was let off. Ledha met the lawyer with great difficulty in January 2007. She filed a case against S.P. Kalluri and others in the Chhattisgarh High Court.


They completely stripped me. They stripped me. My child was wailing uncontrollably on the ground. Then Kalluri said, “Take her inside the room, I will interrogate her.” In my nude condition, they took me inside the room in the police station. Then Kalluri raped me inside the police station.  He brought me outside after an hour and got green chillies shoved into my vagina. Before leaving the police station, Kalluritold the policemen to rape me everyday. In the Shankargarh police station, the policemen used to rape me everyday. Dhiraj Jaiswal came with the policemen three times to rape me and once Brijesh Tiwari raped me.

Complaint (Parivaad) C.A. No. 624/09

Witness no. …1… for (panjiyan poorva saakshya) Deposition taken on the …..27-6-07……. day of ……. Witness’s apparent age …..22…… States on affirmation ……………. My name is ……….Mrs. Leda…….wife of Ramesh…… Occupation ….housewife… address …..Village Tarangava, Police Station Shankargarh, Distt. Sarguja Chhattisgarh……..

  1. This happened around one year ago. I am illiterate. I do not know the date. Israel used to come to our village. His mother also belonged to our Oraon tribe. His mother was from our village. Israel loved me and I became pregnant from him. The foetus got aborted after I was beaten in the village. He always promised to marry me in one or two months. Thus I became pregnant again. He got that pregnancy terminated also. When he did not meet for one month, I enquired about him and came to know that he had married a girl from his own tribe.
  1. When I called Israel and talked to him, Israel assured me that in his tribe, one can have a junior wife and a senior wife (chotki-badki) and that he will me after five months. I kept quiet for five months. After five months, I called Israel again. He told me that he would not keep me and I could go wherever I wanted. I returned to my father and told him that Israel would not marry me now. Then I went with my father to Shankargarh police station where Nasar Siddiqui was the thana-in-charge. Israel had already met him because of which Nasar Siddiqui did not register my report and threw us out of the thana. We returned to our home. A boy named Ramesh used to come to our village. He asked my father what Israel had done to his daughter (me). My father told him to inquire from his daughter (me) instead. Later my father arranged my meeting with Ramesh. Ramesh asked me about everything. So I had told Ramesh whatever Israel had said and done. Ramesh told me that he was in touch with the Naxalites and after talking to them, he would get me married to Israel. After this, Ramesh started coming to my home quite often. In the meantime, one day Ramesh asked my father why we were so keen on my marriage with Israel while Ramesh himself was also a tribal and my father should get his daughter (me) married to Ramesh. When Ramesh talked to me about marriage, I agreed to marry him. Then during sarnapuja, Vikram baba of the village got me and Ramesh married.
  2. After the wedding, Ramesh came with us to my parents’ home and stayed there for two-three days. Then he said that he was going in search of some employment and that when he found some work, he would come and take me with him. One month later, Brijesh Tiwari from Shankargarh police station came to our house and asked him to accompany him as sahib had called me to the police station. In the Shankargarh police station, the thana-in-charge Nasar Siddiqui said about me that I was a Naxalite and if I were not sent to jail, then I would surely file a case against Israel.
  3. Thereafter I was sent to jail. At that time, I was pregnant. My child is very weak. After eight months, when my delivery was due, I was granted bail. I delivered my child at home. After my delivery, when I appeared in the court for hearing, I was again sent to jail. After six months, the judgment was delivered in my case and the court acquitted me. When I released from the jail, my lawyer advised me that I should inform the Shankargarh police station about my release. After three days, I went to the Shankargarh police station with my father. When I went there, I met thana-in-charge Sapan Choudhary who asked me if I knew Ramesh. I said yes, he was my husband. He asked me what sort of work he was engaged in. I told him that he said that he worked as a labourer and did some farming also.
  4. Shankargarh thana-in-charge Sapan Choudhary told me that Ramesh was a Naxalite. Before this, I did not know that Ramesh was a Naxalite. Sapan Choudhary advised me that I should make Ramesh surrender before the police and that if he surrendered before them, the police would help him and the government will also give him some money. Otherwise, one day he would come and kill Ramesh in front of me in my house.
  5. After one month, Ramesh came to our home. I asked him if he was a Naxalite. He said yes. I told him that the thana-in-charge had suggested that I should ask him to surrender. If he was made to surrender then the government will give us money for our living expenses. Ramesh said that he would be coming next month on leave and then he would tell me about his decision. Next month, Ramesh came to Sivildag and informed me through the secretary that he had arrived. After receiving the information from the secretary that Ramesh had come to Sivildag, my father and I went to Shankargarh police station to inform them that Ramesh had come to surrender. At that time, Sapan Chaudhary, thana-in-charge, was not present at the police station; the other policemen were there. We told the police men that Ramesh had come to surrender. The policemen told us to sit, the senior officer will talk to the SP and tell us. Then the policemen told us to go back home and return to the police station at the crack of dawn the next day. Next morning, I went to the Shankargarh police station where I met Mr. Kalluri who told me that I was lying that Ramesh would surrender. I told him with folded hands that I was telling him the truth and that Ramesh had come to Sivildag for surrendering.
  6. Then I was taken in a police van from police station Shankargarh to police station Kusumi. More policemen joined us at police station Kusumi and from there all of us when to Kasamaar. At Kasamaar, all of us alighted from the van and walked on foot. From Kasamaar, we reached Sivildag on foot. On reaching Sivildag, Kalluri sahib asked that Ramesh be brought. Then Ramesh was brought. Then the policemen beat Ramesh with lathis (sticks). After beating Ramesh, Kalluri sahib interrogated Ramesh and after interrogation, he told Ramesh and me that we should go to the house of the secretary and discuss with each other. We were talking in the room. At that time Ramesh told me that “the bag hung on the peg contained (saade lakh) rupees. These police men are going to take me to jail, you should use that money for my bail etc.” (The witness starts crying at this point.) Brijesh Tiwari came in the meantime and shot at my husband Ramesh three times. When Brijesh Tiwari shot at my husband, I started crying loudly. Then the policemen dragged me out of the room. (The witness is crying.) The policemen told Kalluri sahib that they should kill me also. Then Kalluri said yes, kill her. Then the villagers present there opposed it. Then they took me to police station Shankargarh in a police van. I was imprisoned in police station Shankargarh. At night, Kalluri sahib came to police station Shankargarh and warned me not to speak about this to anyone. “We took pity on you because of your child and let you go. If you complain anywhere, we will shoot you.” They let me out at noon on the next day. It was Monday. It was the day of the weekly market in Shankargarh. When they let me out of of the police station then I wondered where to go. Thinking this, I went to Shankargarh market. There I met Shankar. He told me that the policemen had shot Ramesh dead. I already knew about.  I went crying to my home in village Sarangava. After reaching home, I told my parents about the incident. My father asked me to stay at home for ten days and not go anywhere, because in our community (after a death in the family) no one goes out anywhere for ten days.
  7. After ten days, I came to Ambikapur and told my lawyer about the entire incident relating to my husband’s murder. Then my lawyer prepared a petition on my behalf and sent it to the Chief Minister. After filing the complaint, I started living in Ambikapur. I used to work in Suresh’s house as a house maid. When I returned to my village around the time of panchpujai dussehra, my parents informed me that the police was looking for me. After consulting my parents, I went to Chainpur to stay with my sister. The next day, policemen from the Shankargarh police station arrested my father and brought him to the police station. My aya (mother) sent a message to my sister’s house that the Shankargarh police had taken my father into custody. Then I returned home. I reached my home in the evening. Soon after, the policemen from Shankargarh police station came in three vans and took me to the Shankargarh police station. When I reached Shankargarh police station, I saw Kalluri sahib who, upon seeing me, asked if I knew who he was. Then I said, “You are Kalluri Sahib. I made my husband surrender before you and you got him shot.” Then Kalluri slapped me twice. I was carrying my daughter. I fell on the ground with my daughter. Kalluri asked me to take off my clothes. When I refused, two policemen twisted my father’s arms and made him stand up, and started beating him. They beat my father mercilessly. Then Brijesh Tiwari unfastened my saree and took off all the other garments. When I was resisting the taking off of my clothes, they started hitting my father forcefully. I took off my clothes. They completely stripped me. They stripped me. My child was wailing uncontrollably on the ground. Then Kalluri said, “Take her inside the room, I will interrogate her.” In my nude condition, they took me inside the room in the police station. Then Kalluri raped me inside the police station.  He brought me outside after an hour and got green chillies shoved into my vagina. Before leaving the police station, Kalluri told the policemen to rape me everyday. In the Shankargarh police station, the policemen used to rape me everyday. Dhiraj Jaiswal came with the policemen three times to rape me and once Brijesh Tiwari raped me.
  8. For ten days, my father, my mother and I were detained in the police station. My mother was also taken to the Shankargarh police station the same day when I was also taken there. After ten days, they took us to Ramanujganj police station. In the Ramanujganj police station, they made us sign some papers on the threat of shooting us. After releasing us, they put four policemen on duty to keep a watch on me. Even when I went for relieving myself or taking a bath, the policemen would accompany me. On the occasion of Chherta, the said policemen went away to celebrate Chherta. They started drinking liquor. Then I ran away on foot and reached Rajpur. From there, I caught a bus to Ambikapur. As I reached Ambikapur at night, I stayed in a dharmshala (resthouse). In the morning, I went to my lawyer’s place. When I reached my lawyer’s place in the morning, his wife informed me that he had gone to Bilaspur. The lawyer’s wife told me that he would return after two days, so I waited for two days for him. I had no money, so I went to Suresh’s house where I used to work earlier and took Rs 200 from him to go to Bilaspur. When I was in jail, a lady had visited me who had given me her contact number to me. I searched for her in Bilaspur. I looked for her in the Bilaspur high court and I asked about her from a male lawyer. When he enquired, I told him about the whole incident. That lawyer said he will take up my case, so I got him to prepare my case and file it in the Honourable High Court.
  9. One week ago, some people from Delhi had come to ask me some questions, so I told them about the incident. I told the people from Delhi that I had not visited my village since I had filed the case. I want to go to my village. Please arrange for me to go to my village. They assured me that they will make arrangements for sending me to my village in one week. I have presented papers in this case.



#India- time to think beyond rape and engage with deep rooted sexism #Vaw #genderbias

Think beyond the rape


 Kalpana Sharma urges the need to engage with the deep-rooted sexism and misogyny in all aspects of Indian society

We must now move beyond sorrow and anger at the horrendous gang rape and lingering death of the 23-year-old woman in Delhi. Since December 16, this one story and its many dimensions have dominated the media.  Opinion pieces, talk shows, surveys, documentaries – we have seen, read, watched.  The horror of this hideous gang rape by six men in the national capital has finally brought to centre stage an issue that should have been a national concern much earlier.

When the 2001 census figures revealed the drastic decline in the child sex ratio, we should have woken up and asked, what is happening to this country that girls are not even being allowed to be born.  But we did not.  We dismissed talk of the consequences of this precipitous decline leading to an increase in the levels of violence against women. Yet, a decade later all those prophecies are coming true.

When international studies indicated that too many girls were dying in India before the age of six because of socially endorsed neglect in health care and nutrition, again few were alarmed.  This was not a dramatic one-time occurrence.  It was a process that was killing off girls.  So no one noticed.  And few cared.

There are many more processes that continue to disadvantage women from birth, onto marriage and even when they are widowed, abandoned or divorced.  But these are processes that lead to subjugation, violence and death.  So no one notices.  And few care.

Today, women are reaping the consequences of this lack of attention to the details – by policymakers, by civil society and by the media, all those who are now worked up about the issue of rape and sexual assault against women.

At root is the issue of patriarchy – that long word that we prefer not to mention.  It is about social systems that sanctify the superiority of the male.  It is customs and traditions that socialise women to believe that they are inferior, that they must accept a secondary position in everything.  And ones that make men believe that it is their right to dominate, to order, to demand sex and servitude from women, including from those to whom they are related.

Even as we work to make the criminal justice system work for the survivors of sexual assaults, tighten existing laws so that the perpetrators of these crimes do not get off lightly and establish fast-track courts so that cases do not drag on until the survivor is exhausted and gives up, we must delve deeper into these societal structures that ultimately perpetuate and even endorse sexual crimes.

Even if all these legal steps are taken, they will not suffice in reducing levels of violence until the stranglehold of patriarchy is broken.  That is no easy job.  The system has had centuries within which to perfect itself.  It has learnt how to mould itself even as society changes and ‘modernises’.  So, even as women are being encouraged to study, to pursue careers, a line is drawn:  this far and no further.  A career, yes, but only if it can fit in within the prescribed limits of a marriage.  Have your own mind and opinion on issues, but not at the cost of alienating the men in your life – your father, your bothers, and your husband.  Even if young educated women chafe at these restrictions, the majority of them fall in line.

What greater violence could there be than to tell a young girl that she is a free bird, that she can do what she likes, and then cage her within these resilient societal structures?  The price for resisting, for being their own women, is to be confronted with forms of violence that are often not even reported.  Those that occur in a public space are noticed.  What happens within the confines of homes is never known.

The mothers of these young women lived through this violence.  But there is a difference.  Their mothers did not demand equal rights to the public space outside the home.  Today’s young women believe they have the right.  And just that act, of stepping out with confidence, is being interpreted as their being sexually available to men.  They are challenging patriarchy.  And this is enraging those who believe that a woman is good for only set tasks – as a homemaker and as someone who provides sexual gratification, and of course male progeny, to men.  Anyone falling outside this frame should be punished.

Grim as this sounds, there is hope – because women and men are finally talking about these issues, because the media is engaged and because policy-makers are not being allowed to make any more excuses.  Yet, after all the shouting is over, those who really want a lasting change will have to engage with the deep-rooted sexism and misogyny in all aspects of Indian society, of which gang rapes and sexual assaults are one manifestation.

Kalpana Sharma is an independent journalist, columnist and media consultant. She has been, until recently, Deputy Editor and Chief of Bureau of The Hindu in Mumbai. In over three decades as a full-time journalist, she has held senior positions in Himmat Weekly, Indian Express and the Times of India. Her special areas of interest are environmental and developmental issues. She writes a fortnightly column in The Hindu’s Sunday Magazine section, The Other Half, that comments on contemporary issues from a gender perspective. She has also followed and commented on urban issues, especially in the context of Mumbai’s development.

Kalpana Sharma is the author of Rediscovering Dharavi: Stories from Asia’s Largest Slum (Penguin 2000) and has co-edited with Ammu Joseph Whose News? The Media and Women’s Issues (Sage 1994, 2006) and Terror Counter-Terror: Women Speak Out (Kali for Women, 2003)


#India- Life sentence for man who raped teen niece #Vaw #incest

Press Trust of India | Updated: January 25, 2013

 New DelhiA man found guilty of committing rape on his minor niece resulting in the girl getting pregnant and then suffering a natural abortion has been awarded life imprisonment by a Delhi court which also directed the government to pay Rs. 1 lakh compensation to the victim.

Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau sentenced 29-year-old Tara Chand, a native of Uttarakhand and the father of a minor son, to life in jail and a fine of Rs. 10,000 for raping his minor niece after consuming alcohol.

“Convict Tara Chand had been regularly and unashamedly raping his own niece hardly aged 13-14 years after voluntarily consuming alcohol

“Not only did he violate the body of child but he also tormented her mentally and played treachery with the family of the child who had given him shelter. Let alone leniency he deserves exemplary punishment,” the court said, noting the case related to “intra familial sex abuse.”

Observing that the act of the convict is unpardonable, the court said, “as per the official statistics a total of 568 cases of rape have been reported in Delhi alone in 2011 out of which only 2 per cent have been committed by strangers.”

The judge also directed the Delhi government to grant a compensation of Rs. 1 lakh to the victim, studying in class 6th, to provide her “restorative and compensatory justice”.

Chand was the maternal uncle of the victim and had come to Delhi nearly five months prior to the incident in search of work. Due to his poor economic condition, the girl’s father helped him get a job at the hotel where he was a cook and also allowed him to stay with them in their one room rented accommodation in North West Delhi.

The convict used to sleep in the same room as the victim and her parents.

Chand used to consume alcohol daily with the father of the victim, whose mother was a patient of depression addicted to sleeping pills. Taking advantage of the situation he used to sexually exploit the girl after taking her to an adjoining vacant room.

On one occasion, the girl told her mother about Chand’s ill-intentions but she refused to believe her.

On May 1, 2012, the girl complained of stomach pain and her father took her to a hospital. Medical examination revealed that the girl was pregnant and had suffered a natural abortion. She then informed the doctors about being sexually exploited and a case was lodged against Chand after which he was arrested.

The DNA of the aborted foetus matched with that of Chand.

During arguments on quantum of sentence, Chand pleaded leniency on the ground that he was under the influence of alcohol at the time of incident and was incapable of understanding the nature of his acts.

Rejecting his plea, Mr Lau said, “A person cannot be allowed to take advantage of his own wrong and hence convict Tara Chand cannot turn around to claim that his acts were outcome of whatever he was consuming being freely available in the market.”

Stemming from Chand’s plea for leniency, the court highlighted that “based on Global Scientific Research which proves that there are linkages between patrons of alcohol abuse and crime. Alcohol is by a wide margin, the biggest law enforcement problem world-over.”

Citing examples from the USA and several Islamic countries where consumption of alcohol and beverages with high alcohol contents and caffeinated alcoholic beverages have been banned respectively, the judge said, “Consumption of certain alcohol beverages (particularly laced with Caffeine) cause an aggressive behaviour.”

“Scientific research has also proved that alcohol with coverage of Nicotine and Caffeine has an extremely harmful effect on human body.”

The court said that the most violent crimes, including crimes of sexual nature, have a connection with substance abuse especially illicit alcohol spiked with caffeine and nicotine by bootleggers.

It said in such circumstances, it would be “imperative for the authorities to check the demand and supply of illicit liquor in the country”.

#India – 1 minor is raped every 3 days in #Gujarat #Vaw #WTFnews #Narendramodi



Twelve Minor Girls Have Been Raped In The State In The Last 27 Days

TIMES NEWS NETWORK, 25 th Jan 2013 
A minor is rapedin Gujarat every three days. A total of 12 cases of minors being rapedin thestatehave been reported in the last 27 days. In a majority of these cases, the victims were threatened of dire consequences and in some cases the victims did not realize that they were being exploited.
On National Girl Child Day on Thursday, Gujarat — a state which takes pride in safety of its daughters —witnessed minors becoming victims of perverts who even went to the extent of killing them mercilessly.
The Nationa l C r i m e Records Bureau (NCRB) statistics of 2011, which arethelatestfiguresin crime statistics, revealed that three of every 10 rape victims in Gujarat were in the age group of five to 17 years. Of the 130 minors who were raped in 2011, 16 were from the age group of 0to10 years.In mostof the cases,theculpritswere neighbours, relatives,cousins andin somecases even fathers.A glance atthesecases would revealthatthe reasonsof the crime was bottled up aggression of the culprit, taking revenge to even perversion.
A senior police official who has been investigating such cases told TOI about some general provocationsthat may trigger suchcriminal behaviours. “It could be just out of curiosity or peer pressure, in some caseswefoundthatchildsex offenders commit crime because they feel that children are going to judge them like adultsdo. Someoffenders will have sex with anything and children are just one of them.”
The official said that another category of offenders find themselves in a revenge-type situation, where he is in a relationship with somebody but feels that he doesn’t have any power or control over his mate.In thiscasetoo,thecriminal may indulge in such heinous act
and turn violent
with the victim.
of Ahmedabad Women’s
Action Group
(AWAG) Ila Pathak had requested the state government to initiate a programme among rural women to make them awareof thedifferenttypesof child sexual abuses. “TheNCRBdata has shown that in 80 per cent of cases, the child sex offenders are close relatives and neighbours. In rural areas, we have found that there is belief thathaving sex withchildren would give sexual prowess to individuals. In such a situation, it is important that there is awareness in families and also that mothers shouldtalkwiththeir daughterson these issues.”
December 20 | A 13-year-old girl in Ismailpur was raped by a 25-year-old man in Anand town when her family members were not at home
December 21 | A four-year-old daughter of an employee of a textile factory was raped by a close friend of her father in Udhna area of Surat
December 21 | A 16-year-old girl raped in Asundarali village in Muli taluka of Surendranagar district
December 26 | A 13-year-old girl was raped in Jambal village in Amreli. The victim was allegedly abducted and raped by Sadul Charola, a resident of Jira village. The accused even tried to burn her to destroy evidence
December 28 | A 16-year-old girl was allegedly raped by 29-year-old man Ramesh alias Munno Koli who had hired her as farm labour
December 28 | A 14-year-old girl from Kadana taluka in Panchmahal was forcibly whisked away and raped in Santrampur
December 28 | Another 14-yearold girl was raped in the temple town of Ambaji at the GMDC grounds January 1 | A 13-year-old girl was allegedly abducted and raped by a youth in Jambal village of Savarkundla taluka in Amreli district
January 14 | An 11-year-old girl of Mahitadi village in Kheda was raped and cut into pieces to destroy evidence
January 15 | A seven-year-old girl, a class II student from Narsing village was raped on Uttarayan and murdered by an unidentified person in Santrampur taluka of Panchmahal district
January 15 | A 16-year-old girl from Patan was raped by an unidentified autorickshaw driver


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


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.


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.


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 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.


#India- Inmate serving life sentence marries girlfriend inside jail #humanrights

SNAPSHOT, Posted on Jan 25, 2013

In a unique wedding ceremony, an inmate, serving life term in a murder case, tied the knot with his girlfriend in the court premises in Jind, Haryana, after a special permission. Sanjay, a resident of Sonepat ditrict, married his girlfriend Mamta following a special three-hour permission given by court. The marriage ceremony, that took place at the park inside the court campus, was attended by family members from both sides, besides a number of lawyers and court employees. In December last year, the girl, through Sanjay’s counsel, had moved a petition before the court requesting permission for marriage.



Rajinikanth appeals to Muslims to allow Kamal Haasan to release #Vishwaroopam’ #Foe #censorship

TAMIL, Posted on Jan 25, 2013

New Delhi: What days of negotiations failed to achieve, a simple appeal from cinema’s legendary star Rajinikanth might just pull off. Rajinikanth on Friday backed embattled actor-director Kamal Haasan and appealed to the Muslim fraternity to allow him to release his film Vishwaroopam without majorly affecting the storyline of the film.

In a passionate statement issued to the media Rajini asked Muslims “to sit with Haasan and discuss the issue and allow its release without affecting its storyline”.

“Kamal is no ordinary artiste but an extraordinary one who can take Tamil cinema to new levels,” Rajini said.

Kamal Haasan’s latest film ‘Vishwaroopam’ suffered another blow on Friday when the screening was banned in Hyderabad in ‘communally sensitive areas’ because of the Milad-un-Nabi festival. The move comes after the Tamil Nadu government also banned the film on Thursday.

Police asked distributors to refrain from screening the film in communally sensitive zones only for Friday. Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy directed police to stop the screening till Jan 28 after some Muslim leaders called on her and demanded a ban on it.

Following this, the Hyderabad police commissioner asked cinema distributors not to screen the movie at theatres in the city. Cyberabad police commissioner, covering areas around Hyderabad, also directed theatres not to show the movie

But ‘Vishwaroopam’, facing a two week-ban in Tamil Nadu, was released in more than 80 theatres in Kerala. The multi-lingual film was mainly released in B-class theatres under Kerala Cine Exhibitors Association (KCEA). It was also screened in multiplexes and some theatres run by the Kerala Film Exhibitor’s Federation (KFEF), which had declined to exhibit the movie following Haasan’s decision to premier ‘Vishwaroopam’ on DTH format, industry sources said.


#Srilanka- #Gangrape – Peoples’ sovereignty and the absence of protest #Vaw

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

A 45 year-old woman was gang raped in the early hours of January 23 in Wijerama, Nugegoda (some reports give her age as 47). This gruesome incident only received a few lines in some of the newspapers and in the media. Yet a similar incident that occurred in New Delhi, India, when a medical student was gang raped on a bus, provoked a nation-wide protest for several days and, in fact, the protests continue internationally even up to now. This protest caused the Indian Prime Minister to intervene and take action, not only to ensure medical treatment and justice for the young girl but also to take steps towards bringing in speedy legislation to prevent the re-occurrence of similar incidents. Protests took place also in Nepal when a similar case came to the notice of the public. There too, heavy demands have been made of the government, not only to bring legislation but also to achieve other reforms needed to protect women.

The media and the active participation of the people and women’s movements, including local politicians, both in India and Nepal reflected the active participation of the people to ensure protection and to express outrage at the malfunctioning of the law enforcement agencies which are duty bound to protect the public.

In both countries, the media responded to these protests and ensured that the unfortunate event came to be an occasion for the whole nation to introspect and to discuss the crisis of the law enforcement agencies and the failure of the government to ensure that these agencies act with the required diligence in future. On the one hand, the role of the media represented the problems of the conscience of the public. On the other hand, the media also created a discussion among the people in order to express concern as well as to critically discuss the deficiencies of the government that make it possible for such crimes to occur.

According to the short reports that appeared in the Sri Lankan media, the police reported that the woman who became the victim of the gang rape had gone to the market and having lost her way, made some inquiries as to directions from a three-wheeler driver. Under the pretext of offering help, the driver took her into the three-wheeler and then, against her will, took her near a well and threatened her. Thereafter, several persons who came in another three-wheeler, gang raped her. She is said to be taking treatment at the Kalubowila Hospital. The items discovered from the three-wheelers include some condoms which, according to observers, suggest that the attackers may have been engaged in such activities on a regular basis.

New approach to scandal management under peoples’ sovereignty 

In recent times when such scandals occurred, the police filed reports of arrest and this appeased the public by creating the impression that the law was being enforced. However, shortly after arrest, these matters were forgotten. Through all kinds of negotiations and bribery exchanges, or by the intervention of politicians, the process of justice was subverted. The cases of the murder of several persons, together with a government politician, Baratha Lakhsman Premachandra and the recent murder of an elected local government official in Kelaniya are public events which demonstrate this quite strikingly. The murder of a British national and the rape and assault of his Russian companion at Tangalle, allegedly by the Urban Council Chairman of Tangalle and others, was also hushed up. The gang rape of a child by several local area politicians in another rural locality in the South underwent a similar fate. Similarly there were allegations of rape against government member of parliament, Duminda Silva which too, came to nothing. In fact, the list of crimes that have been followed by no real consequences is quite long.

It will not be surprising, if one of these days, the rape victim of this present incident and her family are called to Temple Trees and given some money from the President’s Fund. Such examples of so-called mercy have been evidenced many times, when such scandals happen. After neglecting Rizana Nafeek’s case resulting in her beheading in Saudi Arabia, her mother was called to the palace and some money was given.

Lawlessness and public apathy

In Sri Lanka while there is a public acknowledgement of the existence of widespread lawlessness involving particularly shocking offenses against women, the public itself reacts to these events apathetically. There is no energetic pursuit of justice or demands for accountability from the government.

Such apathy that prevails amongst the public regarding heinous crimes as well as the criminal negligence on the part of the government to resolve the problems of the law enforcement agencies is indicative of the deeper malaise in the Sri Lankan society and the Sri Lankan system of justice.

The collapse of the policing system has been acknowledged. This was the direct result of the politicisation process which in turn is a product of the total control of the state by the executive president which has paralysed the bureaucratic apparatus in Sri Lanka. Naturally, it is not within the capacity of the Sri Lankan president to enquire into all crimes and to deal with them. The task of controlling crime could only take place through the functioning of the law enforcement agencies within the framework of the law. The duty of the president and the government is to ensure that these agencies function and deliver the necessary services to the public. However, the nature of the Sri Lankan system at present is such that the president and the government do not have a reliable bureaucratic apparatus through which law enforcement as well as other aspects of the running of governance can be effected.

The result is crimes that re-occur and the gimmicks that are played by politicians to create the impression of law enforcement while there is no real attempt to ensure protection to the people. This situation has resulted in the creation of a sense of apathy in the society as a whole, even in the face of gruesome crimes such as the gang rape of this woman.

As an independent media is suppressed, there is apathy, widespread cynicism and shameless manipulation of news in the state media which is the only media that is allowed to function without hindrance.

While the rest of the south Asian countries are rising to demand better performance from their governments and the creation of efficiently functioning law enforcement agencies to protect all citizens with particular emphasis on the more vulnerable groups such as women, in Sri Lanka crimes continue to take place with impunity.




Press Release-KKNPP Leaks and Repairs: More Questions and No Answers

People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE)

Idinthakarai 627 104
Tirunelveli District                                                                                                                                January 24, 2013
For Immediate Press Release
Since the NPCIL and DAE authorities are tight-lipped about the current condition of the KKNPP, recurrent rumors are making rounds here in our area that that there have been some 40 deaths, that the contract workers at KKNPP have been asked not to report for duty, and that KKNPP-1 has been completely sealed. Southern Tamil Nadu is agog with such and worse rumors about the KKNPP as Union Minister Mr. Narayanasami makes terse, incomplete and irresponsible statements about leaks and repairs at the KKNPP without giving any details to the public. The Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) Chief Dr. R. K. Sinha said on January 18 that there was “no major issue behind delay in Kudankulam commissioning.” But he stopped short of telling the real truth about the project.
Would somebody tell the complete truth about the KKNPP please? What are the “minor” issues that are plaguing the KKNPP? How are they being rectified? Russian nuclear industry is said to be in a bad shape with reactor cancellations and delays because of cracks and shoddy equipment. Zio-Podolsk, owned by the Russian company Rosatom, is under investigation for shoddy
equipment it produced for several nuclear plants in Russia and abroad since 2007. It’s suspected that “Zio-Podolsk” used wrong type of steel (cheaper than the one originally required) to produce equipment for nuclear plants, such as steam generators. This company has supplied several equipment and parts to the KKNPP. Is it true or not?
According to the DAE and the NPCIL authorities, they completed the fuel loading at KKNPP-1 on October 2, 2012 and it has been four months of testing and reporting leaks and repairs.  And what is leaking? Should those of us who live in the vicinity be worried about our and our family’s safety and well-being?
Interestingly enough, the project cost is said to have risen by some Rs. 4,000 crores more than the estimated cost. What is the actual end cost of the KKNPP 1 and 2? What is the breakdown of this huge amount? Did anyone in India and Russia get commissions and bribes? “Atomstroyexport” has just released its financial statement for 2011. The company claims that losses in 2011 were twice bigger than the losses of 2010, and that the company is on the brink of bankruptcy. This has seriously affected the Russian nuclear projects at Koodankulam in India and Busher in Iran <>. Is the Indian government secretly helping the Russian company with its loss and bankruptcy? Will somebody institute a thorough inquiry on the actual cost of and the over-spending on KKNPP? People of India want to know the truth.
Why is the Tirunelveli Collector, Mr. Samaymoorthi, so deafeningly silent about the KKNPP leaks and repairs? Isn’t he responsible for all off-site safety and emergency issues and concerns? Why are the Chief Minister and all the ministers of Tamil Nadu silent? Aren’t they worried about the safety and well-being of the Tamils? Why doesn’t the DMK Chief speak about the KKNPP leaks and repairs? After all, his Party is part of the UPA government at the Center and he is a vociferous supporter of the KKNPP. Where is the Tamil Nadu opposition leader Mr. Vijayakanth? Does he know about the leaks and repairs at KKNPP? Why does Minister Mr. Narayanasami alone speak about the KKNPP leaks and repairs? Where is the Atomic Energy minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh? Why do they refuse to speak? Do they want only our votes and their power?
If the KKNPP suffers all these leaks and repairs, how did Dr. Abdul Kalam, Dr. M. R. Srinivasan, Dr. Muthunayagam and his Expert Team, and Dr. Iniyan and his expert committee give out the “best and brightest” certificates to the KKNPP one after another? Were they all speaking non-truths? Why are they silent now?
In the light of the above situation, the PMANE demands a White Paper on the actual happenings of the KKNPP along with the Site Evaluation Report (SER), Safety Analysis Report (SAR), Emergency Preparedness Plan (EPP), VVER-1000/412 performance report in the larger interests of the people of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. If they ignore our demand and do not respond in 15 days, we will lay another siege to the KKNPP.


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