An unsung Nirbhaya in Kandhamal #delhigangrape #Vaw


by  on JANUARY 13, 2013 · http://www.dalitweb.org/

Asha Kowtal

She was young and carefree, exploring life and trying to live it to the fullest. As a young girl she wanted to look beautiful, study well and become an independent and confident woman. She used to enjoy her time with her friends and looked forward to go out and watch a movie with her male friend.

Late one evening, the thrill and the excitement of the movie ended in the brutal gang rape and death of the young girl.

This is not the recent story of Delhi’s braveheart . . .

This is the story of a young girl in a remote village in Kandhamal district of Odisha. On Oct. 26, 2012, she went to watch a movie with her male friends from her village during the Dussera celebrations. She was brutally assaulted, gang raped and murdered. The next morning, her body was found in the bushes nearby.

This case resembles the recent Delhi case in all aspects, except that the ‘outrage’ expressed from all corners of the country differs vastly.

None of the politicians apologized to the country, none of the media persons demanded an answer for the crime, none of the Bollywood personalities shed tears for her, none of the feminists wore black for her, none of the students’ groups held protests and candle marches for her.

There is no memorial for this girl. There never will be. Her life is over; she is snuffed out – not just from this world but from our memory and conscience as well. Did we even let her into our memory and conscience?

How do we her value life? While Rs. 15,00,00 has been offered as compensation for Nirbhaya, the Tehsildhar has given Rs.10,000 to this girl’s family in Kandhamal.

Is it a coincidence that her family is Dalit, landless and extremely poor?

The blankness in the faces of her parents and siblings expresses the fact that Justice Verma Committee and its recommendations will remain just as unknown and distant to them, resembling the sorrow of the loss of their dear girl, which remains unknown and distant to the rest of the world.

Please read about many more unsung Nirbhayas in Kandhamal:  report  below which gives a glimpse of the myriad struggles of the rape survivors. Their struggles reveal the deeply structural nature of patriarchal hostility deployed towards the survivors and victims of sexual crimes, and towards redress and rehabiliation processes. All systems, from Child Protection Services to Police to Courts that are meant to ensure the safety and well being of all women citizens are completely dysfunctional for girls and women from the most vulnerable sections.

I am in solidarity with ALL rape survivors and victims. But believe strongly that without unraveling the intersections of caste and patriarchy, no legislation will have any meaning in the lives of Dalit women. Dismantling institutions that reek of patriarchy and caste discrimination is a long haul for anti-caste feminism and all women – from the margins to the center, from the poorest to the most empowered women – stand to live in a better world if that’s done..

~~~

Fact finding team’s visit to investigate the recent cases of rapes in Kandhamal district.

Fact finding report of gang rape and murder of young Dalit girl in Kandhamal

Phulbhani-Kandhamal

It is shameful that heinous crimes including gang rapes and murder of young Dalit girls in Kandhamal is excluded from the discourse on rape in our country, says Asha Kowtal, All India Dalit Mahila Adhikar Manch

Bhubaneswar, January 11, 2013 – The National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights with allied organizations like NAWO, Odisha Forum for Social Action, human rights activists and journalists conducted a fact finding visit to investigate into the recent cases of rapes in Kandhamal district, addressed the media today at Red Cross, Bhubaneswar.

On January 10, 2013, the fact finding team visited five villages ( Tiangia, Simanbadi, Daringbadi, Badagaon, Sarangoda and Tikabali ) in Kandhamal district. In each village, the team has met the rape survivor, the family, community members and the investigating police officers at the police station. Finally, the fact-finding team has met the District Collector in Kandhamal and shared the findings and recommendations.

The members of the team express their shock and anguish over the gruesome cases of rape and murder of Dalit Christian girls in the recent months at Kandhamal and at the same time are angered with the fact that these cases never figure in the recent discussions on sexual violence and rape in India. Dalit girls living in remote tribal areas of India with little access to livelihood and life are battered brutally and killed, and yet this is not enough for the Orissa Government to hang its head in shame.

In Kandhamal, if at all given, a rape case is given Rs. 5000 and rape and murder is given Rs. 10,000 as compensation and in Delhi the recent much publicized case was announced Rs. 15,00,000 (Fifteen Lakh rupees) !!! This shows the apathy of the Government and clear exclusion of issues of Dalit and minority girls. The discussion with the District Collector in Kandhamal has revealed that the district administration has no money for rehabilitation of rape survivors and their families. He said, “I have no money for the compensation and rehabilitation of minority (Dalit Christian) girl survivors of rape.”

Delays in investigation, serious lapse in role of police, zero support from district administration and total break down of statutory bodies is clearly visible in every case that has been investigated. The entire child protection system, including CWC, JJB, Child line has not played any role in support of the victims as well the minor accused in the cases that we have investigated, says Manju Prabha, NAWO

Bogus baba’s and fake leaders like Bhagwat have been issuing baseless statements to the media and we condemn them as anti-human and misogynist ideas. The impunity enjoyed by a few in our country has instigated such people and others to get away scot-free. Such is the case in Kandhamal as well, where community control has been dismantled and hence people and officials are shocked to witness such horrific crimes in the area.

The Chief Minister of Orissa claims to have stayed away from New Year celebrations, in solidarity with the recent victim of rape in Delhi, but we wonder what he has done in response to these five inhuman acts of sexual violence on young Dalit girls in Kandhamal? , says Namrata Daniel, National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights

The families of the rape victims live in abject poverty conditions, without access to basic entitlements. Absence of job cards, access to PDS and other flag- ship programmes was clearly visible in all cases.

Key observations of the fact-finding team:

All the five cases reported to the fact-finding team was found to be authentic and the alleged crimes were truly reported. The detail of each case is attached.

All the acts of sexual violence were intentional and pre-planned to victimize the girl by raping and murder.

Rape survivors and family members do not have any knowledge about their legal rights and steps to be taken towards access to justice.

SC/ST PoA has not been invoked in Tikabali case and hence the accused have been roaming scot-free for more than 5 months. No compensation, no protection and no justice for this young girl who was raped and almost lost her life because the accused slit her neck with sharp knives.

The team observed that that local police did not registered FIR immediately and even those case registered police not supply free FIR copy to the victims

Severe gaps in investigation were observed particularly allegations relating to the police forcing the victims to change the statements.

Filing of Charge sheets has been delayed inordinately in all the cases. Police were not able to give a justification for this.

Filing of false / counter cases on family members of victims has been observed.

The entire child protection system is a total failure and has not been linked with any of the case yet inspite of several complaint letters and phone calls. None of the concerned members have supported. In addition, the girl was denied rehabilitation support by the administration.

After the rape and murder of young girls, Siblings of victim’s family and other girls in the villages have dropped out from school in fear.

The victims are living a life of extreme poverty and have not access to life and livelihood. The team observe that financial assistances not given immediately after the cases. In one case Rs. 10,000 was given in case of gang rape and murder and Rs. 5000 for rape was given.

District administration and police have not taken serious steps and it seems are purposefully neglecting the cases of violence against dalit and minority girls

Human Rights Commissions and other statutory bodies have failed completely in addressing the life security and protection of dalit girls and women in Orissa. No committee working in the district such as Women and child development committee and District Vigilance and Monitoring Committee (DVMC) under SC/ST (PoA) Act 1989 and Rule 1995.

Recommendations:

1. The Orissa Government should ensure speedy trial for all the cases immediately.

2. Fast track courts should be set up for these trials.

3. Ensure filing of charge sheet immediately for the investigated cases.

4. Review of enforcement of SC/ST PoA Act at district and state level should be taken up the state and include SCST minorities to be included in the PoA Act as they are targeted with the same prejudices biases.

5. Full rehabilitation plan for the survivors and families should be made for the survivor and family. Provide a job for the family member, residential school for the survivor and compensation of Rs. 15,00,00 for rape and murder case.

6. Panchayat standing committee should be activated and take serious action in these cases of violence.

7. Health department (NRHM) has not taken any action in any of the cases. Trauma counselling and medical treatment for the survivors and the witness should be provided immediately

8. Education department ( SSA ) should ensure that the girls go back to school.

9. Minority Commission to be set up in the district and Orissa State level to look into all matters concerning minority groups

10. Residential school for minority girl children should be set up to ensure quality education, safety and security of the children.

11. The child protection system ( ICPS ) should be strengthened and activated with continuous monitoring and follow up.

12. The district administration to take steps to generate awareness of legal rights in particular for women and young girls.

13. Sensitization on Gender and exclusion issues – training of police and other district officials should be conducted in

Asha Kotwal Manjuprava Dhal

General Secretary, Member

AlDMAM-NCDHR, New Delhi NAWO, Orissa Chapter

For further information:

Orissa Forum for Social Action

Jugal Kishore 08895210713 jugalkishore_ranjit@yahoo.com

Divya 08895441954 divyaraphael@gmail.com

Asha Kowtal 09560100442 asha.kowtal@ncdhr.org.in

 

#India- Freed from jail, man rapes, murders 9-year-old girl #WTFnews #Vaw


By Mihir Tanksale & Santosh Sonawane, TNN | Jan 14, 2013,

Freed from jail, man rapes, murders 9-year-old girl
According to the police, the accused took the child to a secluded place, raped and murdered her before burying her body.
PUNE/NASHIK: A 32-year-old man, who had been acquitted last year by the high court of all charges in the rape and murder of a nine-year-old girl at Sinnar in Nashik district in 2003, was arrested on Friday for allegedly committing a similar crime — the rape and murder of another nine-year-old girl at Shirdi in Ahmednagar district. The man, Sunil alias Pappu Suresh Salve, had also been arrested in three more similar cases in 2002. It wasn’t known whether those three cases involved minor girls.

Speaking to TOI, inspector Datta Pawar of theShirdi police, who is investigating the Shirdi case, said Salve kidnapped the girl on December 28 last year. “After raping and killing her near the Sainagar railway station in Shirdi, he buried the body. After his arrest, we exhumed the girl’s body and conducted post-mortem.”

Pawar said in the Sinnar case, Salve, who is from Nashik, was given death sentence by the Nashik district court. “However, the high court subsequently acquitted him. He was released from the Nashik central jail on May 28, 2012, after completing his sentences in the earlier cases. Since then, he has been living in Shirdi with his wife and two children,” he said.

Pawar said Salve and the girl lived in the same locality in Shirdi. “On December 28, when the girl didn’t return home from school, her parents began searching for her and Salve helped them in the search. While investigating the case, another girl told her parents that she had seen the victim with Salve in the afternoon of December 28,” Pawar said. When Salve heard this, he fled Shirdi.

Police teams were formed to track down Salve. On Friday, police learnt that Salve had called up his wife and asked her to come to Manmad railway station. “We laid a trap and nabbed him. During interrogation, he admitted to having raped and murdered the girl,” he said.

Buried girl’s body

Pawar said Salve revealed that the girl was going to school when he asked her to come with him to find his 12-year-old son. “As the girl knew Salve, she went with him. He took her to a secluded place near the railway station and raped and murdered her. He buried the body and returned home,” he said.

Salve sold photo frames outside the Shirdi temple. He was produced in court on Saturday and remanded to police custody till January 17. “We are probing whether he has committed any other crimes after being released from jail in May last year,” Pawar said.

Sunita Salunkhe-Thakre, additional superintendent of police (Ahmednagar), confirmed that the high court had acquitted Salve in the Sinnar case. She said in 2002, three similar cases were registered against Salve by Ambad and Nashik road police stations. “In the case registered by the Ambad police, Salve was charged with kidnapping and rape and sentenced to six years’ rigorous imprisonment. In the two cases under the Nashik Road police station, he was sentenced to seven years’ rigorous imprisonment for kidnap, rape and murder in one, but acquitted of kidnap and rape in the other,” she said.

An organization working for nomadic tribes blocked roads in Shirdi on Saturday to protest against the crime. State agriculture minister Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil met the parents of the victim and announced a financial assistance of Rs 1 lakh.

Inspector general (special) Dhananjay Kamlakar of Nashik Range said police superintendents have been told to examine judgments in such cases before deciding on the legal course of action to be taken.

(With inputs from Tarachand Mhaske, Ahmednagar)

Uttarakhand govt prohibits women from working beyond 6 pm #WTFnews #Vaw #Womenrights


 

Agencies : Dehradun (Uttarakhand), Sat Jan 12 2013,

In a bizarre development, the Uttarakhand government has passed an order that prohibits women from working beyond 6 pm in private and government jobs.

The step is being seen as too extreme to curb crimes against women.

The state government is being severly criticised for this regressive approach, and the opposition is objecting to the directive.

The Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna-led state government has reportedly taken the step in the wake of the gang rape and subsequent death of a 23-year-old woman in New Delhi late last month. The woman was repeatedly raped inside a dark tinted glass moving bus, and suffered gruesome injuries. She had to be eventually flown out to Singapore’s Mount Elizabeth Hospital, but succumbed after a battle for survival of 13 days.

In the wake of the December 16 gangrape incident, there has been a flurry of media revelations regarding incidents of rape across the country.

The reports have prompted several state governments and the central government to fine tune the laws of the country regarding rape and other sexual crimes against women. Several commissions, headed by retired judges, have also been set up to discuss the problem threadbare and to come out with recommendations for change. The police is also under pressure to improve its responses to the general public on issues of law and order as well as crimes.

Congress distances itself from Uttarakhand Govt. order on women, BJP criticises

Uttarakhand government’s bizarre decision has invited criticism both from the Congress and the BJP.

Reacting to the state government’s decision here on Saturday, Union Waters Resources Minister and Congress leader from Uttarakhand Harish Rawat said: “Issuing such guidelines that when should they (women) go out and till what time they should work is not a fair step. It is not going to work.”

“I think stricter laws should be made and enforcement agencies should be held accountable to ensure swift and harsh punishment for the culprits. We will have to change the mentality. We will have to come up with a broader social campaign to change the mentality of society to stop such crimes,” added Rawat.

Taking a jibe at the state government, BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain advised Chief Minister Bahuguna not to go out after 6 pm if he feels so scared.

“Instead of improving the law and order situation in the state, they are putting out a ‘Talibani’ diktat that women should not go out of their houses after six p.m. Congress chairperson Sonia Gandhi should take cognizance of this matter and she should ask the chief minister what he means by making such remarks,” said Hussain.

Another BJP spokesperson, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, said that such dictatorship by governments or by the police will make the women feel more unsafe.

BJP leader Balbir Punj asked Bahuguna to resign as his government was not being able to provide better security for women in the state.

“By making such statements, the Chief Minister has admitted his inability to run the government and establish law and order in the state, and he actually feels that the government may not provide security to women, he must resign from the office,” said Punj.

Former Chief Minister of Uttarakhand and BJP leader Bhagat Singh Koshiyari said the Congress is not capable of running a government.

“It shows that the state government is incapable of providing security to women. Tomorrow, the government will stop them from going out of their homes. Instead of passing such laws, criminals should be scared of committing crimes. The government is prohibiting women,” claimed Koshiyari.

“If the authorities work properly, such incidents don’t take place. We will have to spread awareness and teach ethics and values to young people. People in authority should also be alert and work properly,” he added.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna has denied issuing such guidelines that restrict women from going out, and said: “ It is the responsibility of the management of the organisation where they work, to take care of the women employees and they should drop them at door steps if they get late.”

“There is no restriction on women and children, but the organization they are working at should drop them at their doorsteps if they get late while coming home. We will provide every possible security, but it is not our responsibility to drop them home,” said Bahuguna.

 

#Chhattisgarh BJP MP Ramesh Bais justifies rape of women #WTFnews #Vaw


 

 

DC Online | 

 

Raipur: A BJP MP on Thursday said the rape of grown-up girls and women might be understandable but if someone does this to an infant, he should be hanged.

He said rape of minor is a heinous crime and those who commits such crime should be hanged.

“The rape of grown-up girls and women might be understandable but if someone does this to an infant, it is a heinous crime and the offenders should be hanged (barabari ya bade logo ke sath balatkar samajh me ata hai, lekin nabalig bachhiyo ke sath is tarah ka jaghanya apradh karma. Inko to fasi par latka dena chahiye)”, MP Ramesh Bais told reporters referring to the rape case involving minor inmates of a government-run residential school in Kanker district of Chhattisgarh.

Asked about the MP’s remarks, the state’s main opposition Congress said assault on women, whether she is a child or a grown-up, is a heinous crime.

Congress spokesman Shailesh Nitin Trivedi said “assault on anyone is a heinous crime. The statement (of Bais) is objectionable and we condemn this”.

Bais said the incident like the one in Kanker happened in several places but they were not reported.

“Just terminating the employees will not bring back the honour of the victims. The accused in the case should be given stringent punishment”, Bais said.

“The incident of Delhi gang rape has rocked everyone to think over such crimes. The incident of Chhattisgarh is a matter of shame,” the MP said.

The MP also suspected the involvement of senior officials and claimed that for the past several months the girls were being sexually assaulted and the concerned officials were unaware of it.

The incident of sexual assault on minor inmates of the government-run residential school for tribal girls in Jhaliyamari village of Kanker district came to light last
Sunday.

So far six people, including two teachers, have been arrested in connection with the crime.

According to police, the medical examination has confirmed rape on nine inmates out of 40 who are living in a hostel.

 

 

Syed Jalaluddin Umari, President of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind speaks #Video #Vaw #JusticeVerma


 

Posted on 07 January 2013

Jamaat-e-Islami Hind welcomes the government decision to set up committees to review the present anti-rape law and find out measures to make the society safe for the women. Jamaat expresses hope the committees will reach the root of the disease and find out the cure.

Following are the suggestions for kind consideration of the committee headed by Justice J.S. Verma regarding ensuring safety and security to woman:-

1.      Only proper marriage contracted by free will of man and woman should be recognised as legally permitted form of legal sexual intimacy. All sex outside marriage including live-in-relationship should be declared illegal and punishable.

2.      There should be provision for capital punishment for heinous crimes such as rape. These punishments should be given in public and there should be opportunity for people to witness the same so that it might act as deterrent to such heinous crimes.

3.      Co-Education should be abolished and proper education facilities meant for only women only should be available at all level of education.

4.      Educational institutions should prescribe sober and dignified dress for girls.

5.      Services of religious institutions and religious leaders should be sought to reform society, inculcate moral values and awareness against crimes especially in the new generation.

6.      Proper transport facilities for woman which proper safety measures be made available particularly in the town and cities.

7.      Marriage should be made easy and it should be encouraged to have timely marriage, all forms of dowry be abolished and all unnecessary expenditures be curbed and made punishable.

8.      The electronic and print media, TV programmes, Films and advertisements should avoid in proper exposure of woman and it should be made punishable.

9.      The alcohol is in the root of all evils and crimes particularly against women it should be completely banned in the whole country.

10.  The criminal laws in this regard should be made more stringent, the judicial procedure be simplified and made faster.

11.  The police reforms should be implemented soon and especially the complaints of not lodging FIRs or delaying of FIRs are made punishable offence.

(Nusrat Ali)
Secreatary General
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind
jihmedia@gmail.com, 317-D Abul Fazl Enclave, Jamia Nagar, Okhla,
New Delhi-25, Phone: 011-26951409 / 011-26948341.

 

 

Syed Jalaluddin Umari, President of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind defends his organisation’s controversial recommendations to Justice JS Verma Committee to strength anti-rape laws

Women and Reasearch Action Group submission to Justice Verma #Vaw


To:

The Honorable Justice Verma,
Attached and reproduced below are our submission on addressing sexual assault.  We look forward to your final observations and recommendations and hope that they reflect the points and issues we raise in our submission.
Sincerely,
Saumya Uma
******************

SUBMISSION TO JUSTICE VERMA COMMISSION ON SEXUAL ASSAULT From: WOMEN’S RESEARCH & ACTION GROUP (WRAG)

Women’s Research and Action Group (WRAG) is a non-profit organization based in Mumbai, working for the past 20 years on empowerment of women through community action and the law. Through its work with women from underprivileged, marginalized and vulnerable communities of Mumbai and other parts of the country, it has engaged with issues of sexual and gender-based violence against women and girls, the absence of justice and accountability in various contexts including mass crimes, and has engaged in advocacy initiatives towards addressing the existing impunity for crimes against women.

At the outset, WRAG wishes to foreground the inter-linkages between ‘everyday’ violence and harassment faced by all women and girls, and contexts of increased vulnerability, where such forms of violence are exacerbated. The increased vulnerability is caused due to

a)     identity of the victims / survivors – such as physically and mentally challenged women and girls, dalits, adivasis, sex workers, members of denotified groups, religious and linguistic minorities, as well as members of the LGBTI community; and

b)    special contexts – such as custodial situations, militarisation, communal violence, caste-based violence and other contexts of mass crimes, when the perpetrators enjoy de facto and de jure impunity.

WRAG is deeply concerned that the current public discourse has focussed on a ‘strong law’ and stringent punishment, including support for a capital punishment and chemical castration.  We believe that such suggestions are made for political expediency and to assuage public outrage at this point in time, without any genuine attempt to substantially understand and address the complex issues contributing to violence against women and girls, particularly sexual violence. We are convinced that in addressing / arresting sexual assault against women and girls, the following aspects deserve to be examined:

a)     Amendments in law – substantive, evidentiary and procedural;

b)    Ways in which the law should be effectively implemented – including functioning of the police and judiciary, and accountability for dereliction of duties by public servants, and introducing transparent processes;

c)     Protection of rights of victims and survivors before, during and after trial – including issues of reparative justice;

d)    Working at the preventive level and addressing the root cause for violence against women and girls – the patriarchal and misogynist attitudes that exist in all sections of the Indian society;

e)     Enhancing aspects of good governance, ensuring efficient and transparent functioning of democratic institutions and eradicating corruption among government departments through a series of incentives, disincentives and administrative actions; (e.g. corruption within the police force, hospitals, transport authorities and various government departments duty-bound );

f)     Provision of services and infrastructural facilities that would enhance the safety for women and girls (safe, efficient and cheap modes of transport, well-lit roads etc.); and

g)    Other social, economic and cultural processes by which women and girls can be empowered and the perpetrators deterred / discouraged from committing violent acts.

Seen in this light, we believe that amendments in law form a part of the multi-pronged strategies that are required to effectively address the issue of sexual assault, and would not, by themselves, guarantee safety. Our suggestions on legal provisions are as follows:

 

I.   DEFINITION – WHAT AMOUNTS TO SEXUAL ASSAULT?

 

a.     Sexual Crimes as a Continuum: The IPC provision focusses only on peno-vaginal penetration. The Criminal Law Amendment Bill 2012 continues to retain a narrow definition of sexual assault, that focuses on penetration, albeit by body parts excluding objects other than the penis.  The gap between outrage of modesty (S. 354 IPC) and penetrative sexual assault remains large. We believe that sexual crimes form a continuum that include a wide range of sexualized criminal acts.  We believe that the Bill should recognise the structural and graded nature of sexual violence, based on concepts of harm, injury, humiliation and degradation, and use well-established categories of sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, and sexual offences / harassment including attempt to sexually assault and rape.  Consequently, we suggest a repeal of S. 354 and S. 509 of the IPC.

 

b.     Sexual Assault: Sexual assault crimes include but are not limited to penetrative assaults. They include acts that use criminal force, including stripping, parading and mutilation which are intended to sexually assault, degrade or humiliate those who are so targeted.

 

c.     Aggravated Sexual Assault: Recognising sexual assault in certain specific situations of conflict based on community, ethnicity, caste, religion and language, as well as physical / mental disability of the victim merit special recognition. Such contexts ought to be treated as aggravated circumstances due to the use of criminal force, the custodial position of the perpetrator, the nature of coercive circumstances, and the presence of multiple perpetrators;

 

d.     Sexual Offences / Harassment: Acts within this definition could include public stripping and parading of women, groping and pinching of women, and also non-contact acts such as flashing, gesture, stalking, blackmailing via electronic media like MMS, etc.

 

 

e.     Recognition of Marital RapeWe recommend a deletion of the exception provided for marital rape, bearing in mind that women are full citizens of this country, who enjoy the constitutional guarantees of, inter alia, right to life, liberty, equality and non-discrimination. Similarly S. 376A of the IPC, which prescribes a lesser punishment for a man who commits sexual assault on his wife during separation, is regressive and requires to be deleted with immediate effect.  Any apprehensions about introducing laws into the “privacy of the home” hold no waters, in the light of introduction of laws such as Prevention of Domestic Violence Act – which recognises sexual assault as a form of domestic violence and a civil wrong.

 

f.      Gender Neutrality: Further, while the effort to ensure gender neutrality with respect to those who are the complainants/ victims of sexual assault is welcome, as it would extend protection to men, transgender and trans-sexual victims.  However we believe that the perpetrator has to remain gender-specific under all circumstances (custodial and non-custodial) and limited to men as perpetrators, as there is no empirical evidence in India to support a finding to the contrary.  In addition, introducing gender neutrality of perpetrators brings in a false notion of equality in a society that is otherwise highly inequal and discriminatory against women, misogynic and infact the root cause of violence against women.

 

g.     Age of Consent: In the light of increasing evidence from courts, legal precedents, records of crimes, as well as studies on the exercise of agency by young people in asserting their choice with respect to sexuality and relationships, we suggest that the age of consent to sexual intercourse should be retained as 16 and not increased to 18.  We believe that increasing the age of consent to 18 would enable parents / guardians to misuse the provision in the context of choice marriages and inter-caste / inter-religious relationships that they do not approve of, by making false allegations of rape, in order to exercise control over the adolescent girl using the state machinery and the power of law. Such a provision would also provide a tool with which the boy and his family would be harassed and humiliated.

 

 

 

II.    PRE-TRIAL STAGE

The protection of victims of sexual assault requires developing a set of measures aimed to ensure the safety, physical and psychological well-being, dignity, and privacy of victims who are appearing as witnesses in criminal proceedings or otherwise seeking legal redress. Simultaneously, through a combination of penal sanctions and administrative action, public servants ought to be made accountable for dereliction of duty, which prevent the law from being implemented in an unbiased and effective manner, thereby scuttling the process of justice.

a.     Address social obstacles: address social obstacles to lodge a complaint of sexual assault – bias / insensitivity of police, stigma faced by woman, lack of familiarity with legal processes, lack of confidence in the police, safety of women complainants at police stations

b.     Address issue of autonomous functioning of the police force: address bias of police and the need for autonomous, transparent functioning that is free of political pressures

c.     Standard Operating Procedures: Provide for Standard Operating Procedures with detailed guidelines for each aspect of investigation (Refer to the SOPs in place for the Delhi Police since 2005); build in provisions for accountability for violation of the   SOPs; SOPs should be reviewed to ensure that they reflect a gender sensitive and meticulous approach to investigation and officially adopted by all police departments in states and UTs, and should be made publicly accessible.

d.     Improper / Biased / Shoddy Investigation: The responsibility of a proper investigation falls on the investigating agency. Any delay, shoddiness, partisanship and inefficiency in collection of evidence, and lack or delay in medical examination etc should be considered as a grave dereliction of duty, liable to administrative and / or other action.

e.     Proforma for Medical Examination of Sexual Assault Victim: Ensure that the proforma is not biased against the victim; prohibit the two finger test which is widely used during medical examination of the rape victims to determine whether they are ‘habituated to sexual intercourse’; also exclude other observations that comment on the past sexual history of the victim – such as old tears to the hymen.

f.      Professional Training for Collecting Medico-legal Evidence: Recording of medico-legal evidence is imperative, that may be used to obtain a conviction in rape cases) and crime kit (additional tool used for the collection of medico-legal evidence, containing slides, swabs, test tubes and other equipment to collect samples of blood, hair, semen fingernail scrapings). Investigators should be provided professional training in this regard.

g.     Sensitive and Humane Treatment to Victim-survivor: Gender-sensitivity, professional and humane treatment to the victim-survivor with full respect to the dignity, privacy and confidentiality should be provided for; complaints to the contrary should be taken up by higher authorities. Continuous supervision by senior officials of the manner in which victims-survivors are treated is important.

h.     Support Services to Victim-survivor: When a person complains of sexual assault, every police station should be duty-bound to provide an immediate access of the victim to lawyer, medical attention, psycho-social / trauma counselling and other support services as may be required. Psychological support is crucial to the healing of the survivor. Medical professionals should be allowed to provide medical / psychological assistance to the victim-survivor without undue interference by the police.

i.      Exclusion of Sanction for Prosecution of Public Servants: We suggest an exclusion of the application of S. 45 and S. 197 Cr PC to the provisions of sexual assault, in order that the existing widespread impunity for sexual assault where it is committed by public servants, is ended.  We believe that no sexual assault can ever be construed as being perpetrated “in discharge of official duty” and therefore the statutory requirement of prior sanction from the government for prosecution of public servants ought not to be extended to the crime of sexual assault;

j.      Witness Protection: Protection of victims and witnesses from the pre-trial to post-conviction stages in accordance with the jurisprudential developments and Law Commission’s 198th report released in August 2006; strictly enforce legal action on those who attempt to intimidate / threaten / coerce a witness, including pressurizing the victim-survivor and family members to turn hostile during trial, thereby obstructing the course of justice.

k.     Compensation: Compensation to be given to the victims, computed on the basis of injury received. The first instalment to be paid within 15 days of filing of FIR. This should be independent of the outcome of the trial or the victim retracting her statement at a later point due to whatever reason. Proactive enforcement of Section 357A of the CrPC, which talks about awarding compensation to the victims of crime. The the framework of compensation under the SC ST protection of atrocities Act 1989 may be adapted suitably for compensations to victims..

l.      Need for a Humane Police Force: Recruitment of women into the police force, by itself, will not ensure that victims-survivors of sexual assault are treated in a dignified, humane and respectful manner. Training in this regard is required for both male and female police officials. Continuous supervision and monitoring is imperative to ensure that they follow this.

m.   Collection and Compilation of Data: Ensure efficient methods of collecting and compiling data related to complaints of sexual assault.

 

 

III.     TRIAL

 

i.         Swift and certain prosecution

ii.         Time bound trials: Trials in rape cases must be concluded within a period of 90 days; lengthy trials that erode the victim’s resilience, patience and memory, should be avoided.

iii.         Victims’ Lawyers: In trials of sexual offences, the victim-survivor should ordinarily be permitted to engage a counsel of her choice to assist the prosecution. In addition free legal, medical, psychological and rehabilitative services should be made available to enable working class women to pursue legal justice.

iv.         Interpreters / translators: Provision for interpreters/ translators in order to record the testimony of disabled victims or witnesses. Cases involving disabled women end in acquittal as their testimony is either not recorded at all or is recorded without the help of independent interpreters. Often the help of family members is taken in interpreting the testimony, which affects the case at the High Court stage as family members are interested parties and relying on their interpretation of the testimony goes against the rule of impartiality of criminal trials.

v.         Accountability of Prosecutors: an analysis of reported cases show that a large number of cases are end in acquittal because key witnesses such as doctors are not examined in court. This needs to be addressed.  Prosecutors should be made accountable through administrative and / or other action for dereliction of their duty.

vi.         In camera trials: Experience has shown that in-camera trials are not helpful as it is more traumatic for the victim to be surrounded by aggressive defence lawyers and the accused in a closed court room. Additionally there is no scope for monitoring the trial, which becomes important given the attitudinal biases that actors in the legal system have towards women who complain of sexual assault. On the other hand, in camera trials have also been helpful in preventing voyeurism in an open court, which obstructs a safe and secure atmosphere for the victim-survivor to depose in. Hence, it is suggested that in camera trial could be left to the option of the victim-survivor, and where opted for, 3-4 persons of her choice should be allowed to remain in the court room to provide her psychological support.

vii.         Witness protection: better provisions should be implemented for shielding the victim from the defence, including the accused – such as through the use of a physical shield, closed circuit cameras, video conference, voice and face distortion.  These are discussed in further detail in the Law Commission of India’s 198th report. Distance between the witness box and the seating of the accused should be substantial, and direct confrontation between the victim and the accused should be avoided at all cost.

viii.         Cross Examination: Guidelines must be laid down for the cross examination of a victim of sexual violence, particularly highlighting the changes in the CrPC sections which now do not allow character assassination or looking at past history of the victim.

ix.         Protection of Human Rights Defenders: Take measures to protect human rights defenders and other individuals who provide protection to victims.

 

 

 

IV.      PUNISHMENT

 

We believe that much of the recent public discourse around introducing capital punishment for sexual assault in the rarest of rare cases as well as physical / chemical castration, are reinforcing aspects of retributive justice aimed at an eye for an eye, rather than restorative justice which are more suitable for a just and humane society that we believe in. We are principally against retributive forms of justice, and feel that the Indian legal system needs to move towards restorative forms of justice, where the perpetrator is not considered less than human, but as a person with a potential to repent, reform, be rehabilitated and reintegrated in society. Such a potential maybe assessed during the course of the sentence and parole.  The assessment of perpetrators of sexual assault or reccurent domestic violence need to be carefully done observing his attitude towards all women and the victim in particular.

 

i.           No to Death Penalty:  For the reasons stated below, we suggest that death penalty be excluded as a form of punishment for sexual assault.

  • There is no scientific basis for claiming its deterrent effect.
  • Studies show that as punishments become stricter, the rate of conviction falls as then judges are reluctant to award harsh sentences.
  • Death penalty embodies the idea of retribution which is as violent as the offence for which it is being suggested.
  • We also believe that the state does not have the right to take away anyone’s life. There are caste, religious, class biases that are bound to come in, as those who are more privileged and enjoy political clout in society will engage highly professional legal services to escape from death penalty.
  • Given the fact that an overwhelming number of women are sexually assaulted by people known to them, and often include near or distant family, friends, husbands, workplace superiors and partners, we believe that the punishment of death penalty for rape will further deter victims-survivors from reporting the crime.
  • There have been, and are bound to be, errors of judgment – which cannot be undone.
  • We believe that death penalty becomes a tool in the hands of the State to further exert its power over its citizens, which we do not support.

 

ii.              No to Physical / Chemical Castration: We are against physical / chemical castration as a form of punishment for sexual assault, irrespective of whether it is voluntary or involuntary, for the following reasons:

  • Sexual assault is not about the inability to control sexual urge or desire but about exercising power over the victim, stemming from patriarchal values. Suggesting castration as a punishment for sexual assault is therefore, based on an erroneous presumption of the philosophy of rape.
  • Even if it was argued that chemical castration would impair the production of testosterone which is linked to aggression, aggression is an important component of not only sexual assault but also other brutal forms of assault and murder that are non-sexual in nature. There is no logic in privileging sexual assault for this form of punishment, over other crimes that involve comparable amount of aggression.
  • Castration does not guarantee non-penile forms of brutal sexual assault, such as insertion of objects into the orifices of the victim’s body, forced nudity and mutilation of sexual organs.
  • Castration – physical or chemical, voluntary or involuntary – violates the fundamental right to life and bodily integrity of the person concerned, as guaranteed by the Indian Constitution.
  • There is no empirical data indicating its deterrent effect.
  • At a practical level, since it involves administering injections to convicted persons every three months, how will the police trace them once released? If they are not released and are kept in prison, what is the rationale behind castration anyway?

 

iii.       No to Life Sentence Without Parole: Though this is an option being thought by many to contribute to the safety, awarding a person convicted of sexual assault with a life sentence for the whole of his life without parole, deprives the person of a window of opportunity to repent the crime, to reform and rehabilitate.  However there have to be strict forms of assessment to ensure that the accused has the potential to reform before being released on parole.

iv.           In cases of aggravated sexual assault, punishment should be for life imprisonment with no remission.  The sentences for custodial rape and sexual assault must be enhanced compared to the sentences for civilian rape and sexual assault, to act as a deterrent for security officers misusing the power they have derived from being officers of the state.

v.           We also believe the law should punish sexual assault with murder more strongly than that without murder, so that the law does not provide an incentive for the perpetrator to kill the victim-survivor of rape.

vi.           Reparative justice: effective implementation of existing schemes for compensation / rehabilitation for sexual assault with budgetary support.  These include but are not limited to the Victims Compensation Scheme (brought about through a 2008 amendment to S. 357A of the Cr PC) as well as the National Commission for Women’s scheme for assistance and support services to victims of rape. Statutory recognition of comprehensive psycho-social support, care and treatment to victim-survivors.

 

Contact Persons: Saumya Uma & Vahida Nainar (Trustees)

Vibhuti Patel (Trustee), Nasreen Contractor (Co-Director) and Varsha Rajan Berry (Co-director)

Women’s Research & Action Group, 101, Zaithunvilla, Behind Airview Building, near Vakola Market, Santacruz (East), Mumbai 400055. Ph: 022-26674830; wrag2009@gmail.com /codirectorswrag@gmail.com

 

A nameless piece, like hundreds of victims #Vaw #Womenrights


by Charanya Kannan on Saturday, 29 December 2012

I was in my engineering second year. Finished a dance practice at Mylapore, took the legendary 12B bus to go home. I was groped by an asshole in the bus. I was not new to that, I don’t think any woman,especially in India,is new to that. I knew exactly how to handle it. I’ve always handled it that way, ever since the first incident happened when I was in class 6, if anybody touches me I would scream out and call the attention of the bus conductor, the conductor would then ask the man to get down, and I’d be satisfied that I’ve done by bit as I see the guy humiliated, embarrassed, hiding in his face and running out of the bus, knowing that he would never dare to do it again. So that day, I did the same. Except, this time it was different.

The conductor looked up and said “Stand somewhere else, away from him”. I was shocked and appalled, and said “What? Ask him to get out of the bus” and as I was saying this, the asshole kissed me, yes in front of everyone, while I was hurling this complaint against him. He curled his lips and gave me this vicious smile which silently said “You are but a helpless woman”. I screamed in rage, EVERYONE stood silent. ALL the passengers, stood silently, watching. The conductor looked up and said “Galatta panadha, buss virtu erungu”. (Get down form the bus, stop overreacting)  I was fuming and burst out in tears as I got down from the bus,I noted down the bus number and went crying to my dad. My dad agreed to take me to the police station. My mother pleaded with us “Are you crazy, why would you take our teenage girl to the police station? Its unsafe ,besides what would people think”. Can anyone blame her for thinking that way? So we telephoned the police instead.

My father had to use his position -‘gazetted officer’ to even so much as to get their attention. We said we have the bus number and need to file a FIR against the bus conductor and the driver. We got a call from the police station 10 minutes later, and a lady officer spoke to me.  She said ” If you press charges, we’d have to suspend the driver and conductor. We would never be able to trace the guy who did that to you anyway. The driver and conductor would complain to their union, and if the union decided to go on a strike , then the issue would be picked up by the media, and your image would unnecessarily be tarnished. My suggestion is to just forget it”. And thats what I’ve tried doing, tried forgetting it for the last 8 years. But I still remember his face, that sadistic smile, that I’ve been wanting to wipe it from his face forever, but just can’t.  And when I was discussing this issue in my college with a group of friends, a random guy who overheard it actually said ” What sort of a girl is she, why would she speak in public about all this”. THIS. THIS is exactly the problem with our country. It wasn’t wrong for the guy to have done that, but it is wrong that I spoke about it. A dutiful girl should have kept it  a secret and carried on with her life. Even now, I’m very sure my mom would call me from India and ask why I publish notes like these.

A bunch of people reading this are invariably bound to think how “unwomanly” it is for me to write all this. And a few people reading this would probably think “Wonder what dress she wore in the bus”. Thats why I specified dance class in the first line- Indian classical dance implies wearing Chudithar with Dupataa.  I read a blog on this issue where the author had to issue a disclaimer “..want to clarify that not all of the examples of harassment or abuse I mentioned in the post involved me directly..” Because we get judged for writing these. Its easier to speak in third person.  Its almost quite impossible  for any girl in India ot have escaped such experiences. But no one speaks about it. And thats the inception for trouble.  What happened to me was nothing, nothing at all, in light of what so many other women undergo in the country.

I’m probably not even thinking right when writing this, I’m just really depressed when I heard the news about that girl who died today. I may regret writing this tomorrow, as the society does expect me to be ashamed for speaking out. I could be termed ‘Dented-painted”.

But still, a few arbid thoughts that come to my mind right now:

  1. While this rape case is being discussed extensively on electronic media, a 17 year old girl has committed suicide, as the officers were trying to convince her to withdraw the case, by casting aspirations on her character and asking her to marry the rapist.Should I be happy that the officer I spoke to was at least courteous to me?http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/27/india-gang-rape-suicide_n_2370859.html?utm_hp_ref=world.
  2. These are the views about ‘rape’ expressed by our politicians, in the last one year. A sordid compliation. These are our law makers, what co you expect from others?This made me nauseous. I’m not sure what else to say about this.  http://ibnlive.in.com/news/rape-sexual-assault-womens-rights-s-politicians-said-in-2012/312791-3.html.
  3. Everybody in korea wears skirts, the length of it being so tiny that it would not even qualify it as a skirt in India. Yet there is no eve teasing here. NO EVE TEASING. People drink, a lot. Girls drink, a LOT. They drink till 4 am. They hang out with guys. Yet girls don’t get raped, they don’t even so much as get stared at or judged. People eat a lot of chow mien here, yet there is no hormonal problem.
  4. A few months ago I posted this image of a girl, who’s face was charred when a guy hurled acid at her face, because she refused to humour him. When I published this photo, I got two messages from friends saying “We log into Facebook to see happy stuff, that image totally put me off, stop posting such gruesome stuff”. I apologize in advance to those people who find such a compelling desire to stay away from news of this sort.Please live in your happy fairy tale land.  And please don’t read the next point.
  5. Engineering 3rd year. Gajalakshmi Prabhakaran came a little shaken to college that day. I asked her why. Her mother is a nurse. Apparently the previous day, her mother saw a one year girl, a tiny little girl, brought bleeding and dead to her hospital. Apparently the father of the girl raped her. The little baby was dead in her mothers arms. Gajalakshmi’s mother was helpless and tormented. So were we, on hearing the news. The same thing has happened again, this time the tiny one is 2.5 years old. http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report_2-year-old-vadodara-rape-victim-dies-of-injuries_1781807. The case handled by Gajalakshmi’s mother was never quite reported in the media. I’m sure there are hundreds of nameless 2 year girls who die every year.
  6. My undergraduate college was very liberal in a conservative city, there were no ‘dress codes’. Yet when girls wore kurtas and jeans to college, they invariable earned the names ‘bitch’ and ‘slut’ and ‘pros’ by fellow classmates. I was stunned and always wrapped myself in a dupatta for the next 3 years of college. When I see some of those guys’ photographs on Facebook, I now smile, as they’re standing next to a wife/grilfriend wearing jeans. Does that mean there is hope after all?
  7. Speaking about dress, how can you blame the poor guys of Tamilnadu when the youth icon, actor Vijay makes such crass third rate movies ? (I know I can be admonished by Vijay fans for this). Check out this scene where he tells Asin, that if she dresses in a sari, men would worship her. Seriously vijay? Do you want to know some statistics about women who wear a sari and get raped? Our stupid censor board which censors even a simple kiss scene from an english movie, lets such chauvinistic movies make their bucks. Do watch this video, it comes with english subtitles. And remember to hate it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8g9c9FNJ89M
  8. A few years back the rebel in me would have died to return to India to fight injustice. Now I’m just glad I’m away form that place. I’m thinking twice if my daughter should grow up there.
  9. All my dear friends in Delhi /Gurgaon, please leave that wretched place as soon as possible. I love you all too much.
  10. I’ve already  given a few shout outs to this, but I guess this is the opportune moment, when everyone is keen on doing something. Go ahead, read this blog by Sunitha Krishnan, She was raped by 5 men when she was 15 years old, yet she survived. She not just survived, but has been fighting against sex trafficking through her organization @Prajwala (its a community on fb tagged in this note). Please support that.  http://sunithakrishnan.blogspot.kr/. Do spend half an hour reading her various articles.

Danger is near: 99% victims in Tamil Nadu knew their rapists #Vaw


By , TNN | Jan 7, 2013,

Danger is near: 99% victims in Tamil Nadu knew their rapists
Of the 677 cases of rape reported in Tamil Nadu in 2011, 675 victims knew the perpetrators, according to govt data. Only two women were sexually assaulted by strangers.

CHENNAI: Women constantly face sexual harassment in public, but the gravest danger could be closer to home than they imagine.

This is particularly true of Tamil Nadu where, crime records reveal, more than 99% of victims of rape were acquainted with their assailants in some way. In many cases, the culprit was a family member, a close relative that the victim would normally have no reason to fear.

Of the 677 cases of rape reported in Tamil Nadu in 2011, 675 victims knew the perpetrators, according to statistics compiled by the National Crime Records Bureau. Only two women were sexually assaulted by strangers.

Chennai police registered 76 cases of rape in 2011, including 74 in which the victims knew their assailants.

Of the 675 accused in the state in 2011, 249 were neighbours of the victims, 96 were relatives, two were close family members, including parents, and 328 were “other known persons” and acquaintances.

The data for Tamil Nadu is reflective of nationwide figures – 93% of rape victims across the country knew the offenders – but also indicate that women in the state are more vulnerable to sexual assault by people they trust than anywhere else in the country.

In 24,206 cases of rape reported in the country in 2011, 22,549 of the offenders were family members, relatives, neighbours or friends of the victims.

Disturbingly, in the 677 cases recorded in the state in 2011, 45 victims were 10 years old or younger, 46 were between 10 and 14, and 181 were between 14 and 18. Most victims (365) were between 18 and 30, but as many as 272 were minors. Two victims were more than 50 years old.

“A private place, like a woman’s house, is now more dangerous than a public place,” said Prasanna Poornachandran, CEO of International Foundation for Crime Prevention and Victim Care. “The high incidence of sexual abuse by acquaintances and relatives is primarily because of a lack of awareness.”

“Girls do not suspect family members or relatives and many victims are afraid to tell someone when they are first assaulted, leading to repeated abuse,” he said. “Women should be aware of the threat and be advised to protect their daughters and teach them how to protect themselves.”

A senior police officer said there has been a marked increase in sexual abuse by family members in Tamil Nadu. “But women are also filing more cases against close relatives because awareness programmes have emboldened them to lodge police complaints,” he said.

All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) national secretary U Vasuki said there should be more stringent rules to curb sexual harassment in educational institutions and workplaces. “How do you stop sexual abuse in the privacy of a family’s residence? The state should be more proactive about educating girls and women about the dangers they face and their right to bring charges against offenders.”

Self proclaimed Godman Asaram Bapu-” Delhi victim responsible for gang-rape” #WTFnews #Vaw


 | Jan 07, 2013,

Gangraped girl equally responsible, suggests Asaram Bapu

PTI
New Delhi, January 07, 2013

Asaram Bapu courted controversy after he said that the Delhi gangrape victim was equally responsible for the crime and the girl could have called her assailants brothers and begged them to stop.

Asaram’s remarks on the gangrape of the 23-year-old girl sparked condemnation across

the political spectrum and from women’s bodies today with the BJP saying it was “regrettable, deeply disturbing and painful”.

Addressing his followers recently, Asaram said that when the girl encountered six drunk men “she should have taken God‘s name and could have held the hand of one of the men and said I consider you as my brother and should have said to the other two ‘Brother I am helpless, you are my brother, my religious brother.’

She should have taken God’s name and held their hands and feet… then the misconduct wouldn’t have happened.”

He also went on to say, “Galti ek taraf se nahi hoti hai (mistake is not committed from one side).”

The girl was gangraped on the night of December 16 in a moving bus and died nearly a fortnight later at a Singapore hospital.

“The accused were drunk. If the girl had chanted hymns to Goddess Saraswati and to Guru Diksha then she wouldn’t have entered the bus…,” he added.

BJP spokesperson Ravishankar Prasad said Asaram is a religious guru and that the country looks upto him.

“His statement is regrettable, deeply disturbing and painful,” he said.

“For him to make the statement in relation to a crime which has shocked the conscience of the country is not only unfortunate but deeply regrettable,” he added.

According to a report broadcast on CNN-IBN, Asaram Bapu made the following observations about the Delhi gang-rape.

“Jinone galti ki.. sharabi they. Agar us kanya ne saraswati mantra liya hota, guru diksha li hoti.. toh boy friend ke saath picture dekh kar jis kisi bas mein ghusti nahin. Agar ghus bhi gayi.. toh 6 sharabi the.. Bhagwan ka naam leti aur ek ka haath pakadti “Tere ko toh mai maanti hoon.”

Do ko bolti “Bhaiya! Main abla hoon. Tum mere bhai ho. Dharam ke bhai ho. Bhagwan ka naam lekar haath pakadti, pair pakadti.. itna durachar nahi hota. Galti ek taraf se nahi hoti.”

The spiritual leader’s remarks could be paraphrased thus: Those who were at fault were drunk. Had she taken guru diksha and chanted the Saraswati Mantra, she would not have boarded any random bus after watching a movie with her boyfriend. Even if she did, she should have taken God’s name and asked for mercy.

She should have called them brothers, fallen at their feet and pleaded for mercy. Had she said, “I am a weak woman, you are my brothers”, such brutality would not have happened.

The self-proclaimed godman also said he was against harsher punishments for rape accused as such laws could be misused.

An aide to Asaram sought to downplay the controversy over the remarks.

Neelam Dubey said the remarks were made at a religious discourse in Delhi in the context of how one should invoke God’s name to avoid incidents like crimes against women.

Some reports said the event was held in Rajasthan.

Dubey said Asaram was trying ta drive home the point that incidents like the gangrape of the girl could have been avoided by reciting mantras, by reciting names of Gods.

“If she(victim) would have taken God’s name or recited a mantra God inside her might have suggested her to how to avoid such crimes,” she said, seeking to explain Asaram’s remarks.

“He was giving that idea to his devotees. He was citing the gangrape incident to say one should use commonsense to avoid such incidents,” she added.

Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi said religious leaders should give serious thought before they speak out.

MEAN WHILE, THERE ARE MURDER CHAREGS AGAINST ASARAM BAPU
Gujarat Government has extended by three months the term of Justice (retd) D K Trivedi Commission of Inquiry, which is probing the death of two boys at spiritual leader Asaram Bapu’s ashram here in 2008. “Government has extended the term till March 31, 2013,” Commission secretary I T Sharma told PTI. This is the sixth time the term has been extended. Commission was set up in 2008 to probe the mysterious death of two children, whose bodies were found on the Sabarmati riverbed on July 5, 2008 after they went missing on July 3. Dipesh Vaghela and Abhishek Vaghela, cousins, were studying at Ashram‘s Gurukul (residential school) at Motera here. The mysterious deaths caused a considerable uproar, with parents levelling allegations of “black magic” against Asaram and his son Narayan Sai. CID is also conducting investigation.
Seven disciples of Asaram Bapu were arrested in the case, now they are on bail.
Asaram appeared before the Commission for deposition on December 1 after much dithering. He refuted the allegations and said it was a conspiracy to malign the Ashram and Hinduism. His son Narayan Sai also deposed, denying any knowledge of `black magic’. PTI

Jamaat , follows RSS, BJP on #moralpolicing -demands ban on co-education, live-in relations #Vaw #WTFnews


Jamaat-e-Islami Hind has told Justice Verma Committee to abolish co-education, set up proper education facilities exclusively for women and identify sex outside marriage as a crime.

In a statement, JIH said physically intimacy should only be permitted to those who are married.

“All sex outside marriage including live-in relationship should be declared illegal and punishable,” the statement issued by Nusrat Ali, secretary general of JIH, said.

The Jamaat expressed hope the Verma committee will reach the root of the “disease” and find out the cure for rape and gave 11 suggestions to the three-member panel, which has been asked by the government to submit its report in a month.

It also said that there should be provisions for capital punishment for heinous crimes such as rape.

These punishments should be given in public and there should be opportunity for people to witness the same so that it might act as deterrent to such heinous crimes.

The organisation was of the view that proper transport facilities for woman should be made available particularly in towns and cities, and police reforms should be implemented at the earliest.

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