#India- Bombay HC -‘Something is wrong somewhere’ #Vaw #Acidattack


xourtesy- rishabh arrora illustration -tehelka

By , TNN | Dec 13, 2012,

MUMBAI: Referring to the recent attack on a Kandivli woman with an insecticide spray, the Bombay high court on Wednesday lamented the general lack of fear of the law-and-order machinery, saying “something is seriously wrong somewhere”.
A division bench of Justices V M Kanade and P D Kode made the observation as it heard a suo motu public interest litigation (PIL) on safety and security of women. The PIL was taken up a little after the same bench confirmed the death sentence of two persons for raping and killing aBPO employee in Pune in 2007.Expressing concern over the assault on a woman in Kandivli, the high court wondered what causes such attacks. “Something is seriously wrong somewhere. There was a time… (when) the presence of even a single constable was sufficient to deter (criminals). Now, nobody is afraid,” said Justice Kanade.

A neighbour burnt the face of 23-year-old housewife Shraddha Langde on Tuesday morning by pressing open an insecticide spray at her and then clicking a lighter in front of it.

At the previous hearing of the PIL on Monday, the high court took note of the increasing cases of eve-teasing and of instances where people attempting to protect women were assaulted, even murdered.

On Wednesday, public prosecutor Revati Mohite-Dere submitted that the Supreme Court, while dealing with the issue of eve-teasing on November 30, had laid down guidelines for states and union territories to follow. “Until legislation on the issue is introduced, the apex court has set out measures to curb eve-teasing,” she said. In their order, the high court judges said that, in view of the SC guidelines, “it is not necessary for this (high) court to again lay down further guidelines”.

On the subject of providing security to women, the court will hear the state at the next hearing on December 19 or after the Christmas vacation. The government has been asked, if possible, to file a reply.

 

#Bangalore- Dial 100, even for eve-teasing


By Sangeeta Bora – BANGALORE

10th December 2012 , IE

  • The Bangalore City Police Facebook page is a big hit with Bangaloreans. Police are urging the public to share their grievances online and promise to take action.
  • The Bangalore City Police Facebook page is a big hit with Bangaloreans. Police are urging the public to share their grievances online and promise to take action.

The Supreme Court, in its new direction to the state governments and Union Territories, has asked to establish Women’s Helpline in various cities and towns. In light of frequent eve-teasing cases in the city and country, City Express inquired about a possible helpline dedicated for this malaise alone in Bangalore.

The Joint Commissioner of Crime, East, B Dayananda said, “We do not have any separate number dedicated to eve-teasing issues. But people can definitely make use of the number 100 to report such cases.”

Explaining the effectiveness of 100, Dayananda says, “The best option for anyone is to call this number and you will get immediate response. These numbers are also manned by women police personnel and they have access to the movements of the police on Cheetahs in the city. They can immediately alert them and send help where ever needed.”

The police commissioner, Jyothiprakash Mirji have also opened up new avenues like anonymous letters or SMS options for women in Bangalore who are not keen on revealing their identity. Similarly, in a conference, Joint Commissioner of Police Crime (West Division) Pranab Mohanty had reminded about the Facebook page of Bangalore police where any affected woman can upload any complain. He had also highlighted the presence of women desks in all the police stations and the online system of filing complaints. But when City Express enquired about the SMS facility with the Joint Commissioner of crime west, Pranab Mohanty, he stated his ignorance and referred the matter to the control room (100). Suma, an employee in police control room said, “The SMS facility is still on the process. It will be activated in a month or two.”

 

Mumbai- 4 minors, teen kill youth who protested #eve-teasing #Vaw


By , TNN | Dec 5, 2012, 02.21 AM IST

Dombivli: In a chilling replay of the Amboli eve-teasing horror, four minor boys and their 18-year-old friend stabbed a youth to death at the gate of his housing complex here for protesting the lewd comments passed at a girl. They also injured another person who tried to help the victim late on Monday evening.The five have been arrested for murder and rioting; the four minors will be presented in a juvenile court on Wednesday.

Around 9.45pm on Monday, Santosh Vichivara (19) was returning from work and took a private bus to his Navneet Nagar complex from Dombivli station. Also aboard was a girl who stayed in his complex and was returning from tuitions. Once they alighted, the five accused who were hanging around the colony’s gate, targeted the girl with vulgar comments.

Three of the minors, aged 16 and 17, are in school. A 16-year-old dropout is suspected to be the main assailant. Pankaj Pal, 18, is studying for his HSC examination.

Santosh was irked and when one of the eve-teasers asked for the girl’s cell phone number, he confronted the boys. He asked them to leave the colony gate and an argument ensued. The girl hurried inside and told Santosh to avoid a dispute as the boys, who are from middle class families and stayed nearby, were known miscreants.

But Santosh, who worked in a shop, stood his ground and told the boys that he didn’t want to see them again at the complex gate. At this, the boys attacked him and started beating him up. One of them took out a knife and stabbed him. Santosh staggered into his complex, but the boys followed him and stabbed him again.

On October 20, 2011, Keenan Santos (24) and Reuben Fernandez (29) were stabbed after a scuffle near a paan shop in Amboli , Andheri (W), for protesting against some men harassing their women friends.

In Dombivli, society member Jayantilal Gada, 50, saw the scuffle near the gate and ran to help Santosh. The boys attacked him too with the knife. “Initially, when I saw the accused chasing Santosh, I thought they were manhandling him. But when I went closer, one of the boys attacked me with a knife. I suffered injuries to my hand,” said Jayantilal, who is recovering.

By now, the melee had alerted residents, many of whom rushed out on seeing the scuffle. The boys fled.

“Seeing Santosh bleeding heavily, we called an autorickshaw and took him to the nearby Arogyam hospital. The doctor declared him dead on arrival,” said Manoj Gosar, a resident of the society.

Later, the residents approached the local Manpada police, who filed a murder and rioting case and started a hunt for the accused. “The girl who was being harassed gave us clues about the accused and described the boys to us. We laid traps and arrested them from separate places through the night,” said Indrajeet Karle, inspector at Manpada police station. The girl identified the boys on Tuesday.

 

#India- Supreme Court issues directions to curb ‘eve teasing”#VAW #mustshare #goodnews


‘Curb eve-teasing with an iron hand’: Supreme Court

LEGAL CORRESPONDENT, The Hindu, Dec 2, 2012

In a bid to curb eve-teasing, the Supreme Court has directed all States and Union Territories to depute plain-clothed women officers at public places such as bus stands, railway stations, metro stations, cinema theatres and shopping malls.

Giving a series of directions, a Bench of Justices K.S. Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra said: “Eve-teasing today has become a pernicious, horrid and disgusting practice. More and more girls and women go to educational institutions, workplaces, etc, and their protection is of extreme importance to a civilised and cultured society. The experiences of women and girl children in overcrowded buses, metros, trains, etc, are horrendous, and a painful ordeal.”

Writing the judgment, while allowing a Tamil Nadu appeal against the acquittal of policeman S. Samuthiram who was accused of teasing a couple, Justice Radhakrishnan said: “Parliament is currently considering the Protection of Women against Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill, 2010, which is intended to protect female workers at most workplaces. Provisions of that Bill are not sufficient to curb eve teasing. Before undertaking suitable legislation to curb eve-teasing, it is necessary to take at least some urgent measures so that it can be curtailed to some extent.”

“Eve-teasing,” said the Bench, “is a euphemism, a conduct which attracts penal action but it is seen [that] only in Tamil Nadu a statute has been created to contain the same, the consequence of which may at times be drastic. Eve-teasing led to the death of a woman in 1998 in Tamil Nadu which led to the government bringing an ordinance, namely, the Tami Nadu Prohibition of Eve Teasing Ordinance, 1998, which later became an Act, namely, the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Eve-Teasing Act, 1998.”

The Bench issued the following directions: a) There will be a direction to the State governments and the Union Territories to install CCTV in strategic positions which itself would be a deterrent and if detected, the offender could be caught.

b) Persons in charge of educational institutions, places of worship, cinema theatres, railway stations and bus stands have to take steps they deem fit to prevent eve-teasing within their precincts and, on a complaint being made, they must pass on the information to the nearest police station, or the Women’s Help Centre.

c) Where either passengers or persons in charge of a public service vehicle indulge in eve-teasing, the crew shall, on a complaint made by the aggrieved person, take the vehicle to the nearest police station and give information to the police. Failure to do so should lead to cancellation of the permit to ply.

d) The State governments and Union Territories are directed to establish Women’s Helpline in various cities and towns, so as to curb eve-teasing within three months.

e) Suitable boards cautioning against eve-teasing should be exhibited in the precincts of educational institutions, bus stands, railway stations, cinema theatres, parties, beaches, public service vehicles, places of worship, etc.

f) Responsibility is also on passers-by who should report such incidents to the nearest police station or to the Women’s Helpline.

g) The State governments and the Union Territories should take effective measures by issuing suitable instructions to authorities including the District Collectors and the Superintendent of Police on effective and proper measures to curb eve-teasing.

Read full judgement here

 

Yesterday, Guwahati. Today, Mangalore. Tomorrow, where else? And again… And again… #VAW


 

And again… And again…

BY KALPANA SHARMA

 
When we need more than just strong laws... Photo: Mohammed Yousuf
The HinduWhen we need more than just strong laws… Photo: Mohammed Yousuf

Yesterday, Guwahati. Today, Mangalore. Tomorrow, where else?

The outrage over the Guwahati incident has done nothing to stem the flow of similar incidents being reported from across the country. The naming and shaming of the perpetrators of the crime, the fact that the police managed to catch them and arrest them appears to have made little difference. On the contrary, it is almost as if the repeated footage from Guwahati played on television channels has encouraged others to do the same.

We must not forget that while the media went into over-drive on the Guwahati case, in another part of Assam, a young girl who went out to collect firewood was “molested” by Army jawans. She was saved when villagers heard her cries for help. How many more such cases take place each day in other parts of the troubled Northeast?

In action again

Almost matching Guwahati was what happened in Mangalore. We should not be surprised. In 2009, the self-appointed guardians of morality, the Sri Ram Sene, set about dragging women out of a pub, pulling their hair, hitting them — and all of this in full view of television cameras. On July 28, a mob belonging to the Hindu Jagaran Vedike decided that a group of boys and girls enjoying a birthday party were attending a “rave” event. Do they know what is a “rave”? Certainly not. But definitions do not matter because these upholders of public morality decided that what was happening was “immoral”.

Armed with cameras from local television channels, the men barged into the venue of the party, dragged, hit and molested the women, punched and hit the men, including the birthday boy, and made sure every minute was captured on film. There is a pathetic shot of several girls cowering on a bed, trying to cover their faces and bodies with pillows while the cameras continue to film. Even after the police intervened, the cameras did not switch off and kept trying to literally “uncover” the women as they left.

Still in the South, at Bhoovanapadu beach, a popular tourist spot in Srikakulam district, Andhra Pradesh, a gang of five young men pounced on a couple seeking a private moment. The man was beaten up while the woman, a 20-year-old college girl had her clothes ripped off. According to the police, the men had pinned her to the ground, had taken off her gold ornaments and were getting ready to record what would follow on their mobile phones when the police arrived.

In all these cases, the victims are deemed “immoral” while the attackers believe they are the torchbearers of decency and morality. We keep hearing this repeatedly, even from those who should know the law, given that they are the lawmakers. Yet recently, when a man at a Kolkata railway station attacked a girl returning from tuition classes, the Trinamool MP Chiranjit Chakroborty had this to say about the crime: “Eve-teasing is a very old thing. It has been going on for ages. One of the reasons behind the increase in incidents of eve-teasing is short dresses and short skirts worn by women. This in turn instigates men.” Really? “Eve-teasing?” Has no one informed the honourable MP that there is no such word?

The horror stories do not end. In Mandya, Karnataka, a 19-year-old garment worker was thrown out of a moving train when she tried to resist a gang of men who were harassing her. She is now in a hospital with multiple injuries, having fallen 25 feet from the train onto a rocky riverbed. She said none of the other women in the compartment intervened even though they saw the men harassing her, offering her money for sex.

Not enough

Even as these attacks on women were being reported from different parts of the country, the cabinet has approved the Criminal Law Amendment Bill that suggests changes in a whole range of laws that have a direct impact on women. Space does not permit a detailed discussion on the changes contemplated. But suffice it to say that while the law must be strengthened, it will not work as a deterrent unless the law-enforcing machinery actually enforces the law.

At the same time, the law-enforcers cannot become a moral police, literally giving a license to any other group that chooses to follow suit. The example of some in the Mumbai police is a particularly bad one in this regard and the outgoing Inspector General of Police in Mumbai has rightly emphasised that “enforcement of law is meant to uphold human rights.”

A new and stronger law will also fail so long as we allow and encourage a culture of impunity, where one group of people decides that it will enforce its own version of morality. In the long term, it is the Taliban-like actions of groups like the Hindu Jagaran Vedike, and the example they set, as well as the oxygen of publicity that the media appears to be granting them, that is cause for serious concern for the future.

Email: sharma.kalpana@yahoo.com

 

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