FIRs for offences under Sections 376, 376A, 376AB, 376B, 376C, 376D, 376DA, 376DB, 376E and the POCSO shall not be put in public domain. No person can print or publish the name of the victim or even in a remote manner disclose any facts that can lead to the identification of the victim, even when she is deceased and the family agrees to disclosure, unless authorised by a judge.
Domestic Violence includes causing any harm or injury to the safety, life, health or well being of the aggrieved woman by committing any physical, sexual, verbal or economic abuse. Moreover, it also includes any injury or harm done to the aggrieved woman or her relative with a view to coerce her or any person, to meet unlawful dowry demand. Threats to commit violence are also covered under this definition.
#MeToo is a scream for help as well as a call to action — by women from all walks of life, united in their demand to end rape culture in general and sexual harassment at workplace in particular. The #MeToo tracker is a collation of all the names that have been accused of sexual harassment so far in India in the wake of the 2018 movement.
All eyes are on the Supreme Court to hold the ideals of the Constitution up and declare FGM an offence. It is about time that India joins the international movement against FGM and that the law protects its citizens from such heinous violation of human rights and bodily integrity.
Now the matter will be heard on January 22, 2019 in the open court to enable the petitioners in the review petitions to present oral arguments to make out the case for the review of the decision of the Supreme Court permitting women’s into Sabarimala temple.
There is no provision in India to report the crime to the police and having the option of not going for compulsory prosecution. Under the rape laws in the West, women are given the choice at the time of reporting whether they want to proceed with the case or not. Since Indian law mandates a compulsory prosecution on reporting of a rape, many victims abstain from reporting.
The Petitioner through a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) had stated that the Fundamental Rights guarantee equality in protection and safeguarding measures, and ensures no discrimination on the basis of sex, life with human dignity, to equality, bodily integrity and privacy.
The Supreme Court’s equality jurisprudence now needs to be extended and applied towards existing patriarchal structures within the home and the family. And what better place to start that the antiquated notion of restitution of conjugal rights – Section 9 of Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 – where the courts are directly complicit in upholding and perpetuating patriarchy.
The powerful and praiseworthy dissents of judges like HR Khanna, M Hidayatullah have always spoken in the favour of protecting the sanctity of Part III of the Constitution while the dissent of Justice Indu Malhotra puts restrictions on the bounds of Article 14 of the Constitution. The non-application of Article 14 in religious matters would go against the very basic principles of the Constitution.
Justice for women means the right to work, expecting their employers to understand and prevent sexual harassment at the workplace, zero tolerance of sexual harassment by employers, providing a mechanism to raise complaints when it happens. When employers fail in their duty to prevent sexual harassment, or even to recognise its existence under their nose, where is the question of ‘due process’?
M J Akbar’s resignation is a testament to the sheer power of the #MeToo movement, and the horror of its stories and experiences. In fact, Akbar tried to emulate this government’s bullying tactic by initially denying all the allegations, and then filing a criminal defamation case against Priya Ramani, a senior journalist.
It is the obligation of lawyers to uphold public interest. My social commitment to the #MeToo movement overrides my professional engagement, and therefore I have taken a conscious decision to stop representing Talib Hussain in any court.