Offenses Against Women 

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Offenses Against Women, As stated in Rigveda and other scriptures, ancient Indian women maintained a high level of respect in society. The standing of our ladies and their heroic actions from the Vedic period to present times may be recorded in volumes. However, later on, women lost their prestige and were consigned to the background because of social, political, and economic developments. There were many harmful conventions and traditions in which women were oppressed and attached to the limits of the family.

Official figures reflect a falling sexual relationship, health status, literacy rates, employment participation rates, and women’s political engagement. In contrast, societal problems such as deaths by dowry, the marriage of children, domestic violence, rape, and sexual harassment are widespread in many areas of India. Over the course of years, there has been increasing humiliation, rape, abduction, abuse, dowry deaths, torture, woman-beating, etc.

What is the Law related to Crime against Women?

There are two categories in which legislation relating to the crime against women are classified: Special and Local Crimes against Women (SLL)

The crimes against women contained in special and local laws are designed to eradicate the immoral and sinful actions and use of women in society. These laws are reviewed and modified often to ensure that emerging demands are addressed promptly. Some acts which have specific measures to safeguard women and their interests are set down below.

  1. The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956
  2. The Dowry (Prohibition) Act, 1961
  3. The Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929
  4. The Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986
  5. The Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act, 1987

Crime Against Women mentioned in The Indian Penal Code, 1860

The Indian Penal Code of 1860 provides for the punishment of the offender for the odd crimes against women. Different parts of the IPC deal explicitly with these offenses.

  1. Acid Attack on women (Sections 326A and 326B)
  2. Rape (Section – 375, 376, 376A, 376B, 376C, 376D and 376E of The Penal Code, 1860)
  3. Tentative of committing rape (Section 376/511)
  4. Kidnapping and abduction for various purposes (Sections 363–373)
  5. Murder, death of Dowry, Suicide Abetment, etc. (Sections 302, 304B, and 306)
  6. Husband’s cruelty or his family (Section 498A)
  7. Excuse women’s modesty (Section 354)
  8. Harmful sexuality (Section 354A)
  9. Women to disrupt a woman (Section 354B)
  10. Leadership (Section 354C)
  11. Stalking (Section 354D)
  12. Girls up to the age of 21 years (Section 366B)
  13. Word, gesture, or behavior that offends a woman’s modesty (Section 509)

Sexual offenses against Women

Rape

Rape is one of the most horrific acts a woman in our culture has perpetuated. It is known to constitute India’s fourth most frequent female crime. The rape is done if a person has sexual intercourse or, to an extent, penetrates or makes a woman’s vagina, mouth, urethra, or anus, or inserts any object or part of the body, other than a penis, into the vagina or urethra or anus or causes the woman to be so with him or any other person, or manipulates any part of the body or part of it; or manipulates the part of the body or part of it or attaches its mouth to a woman’s vagina, anus, urethra, or does so to her, or any other person or under any of the conditions mentioned under IPC.

Sexual Harassment at Workplace 

The 2013 Law on the prevention, prohibition, and redress of sexual harassment of women on the job was adopted to protect women in the workplace. Sexual harassment means when a person undergoes an unwelcome act of physical intimacy, such as capitulation, brushing, touching, teasing, directly or through implication for the benefit of another person, shows a person sexually explicitly any visual material in the form of photos/cartoons/pin-ups/calendars/screensavers/jokes that are likely to provoke discomfort or humiliation, boldness, sexism. This legislation replaced the Vishakha Guidelines established by the Supreme Court of India to combat sexual harassment. An internal complaints committee with 10 or more workers should be formed at each employer’s office or branch.

Acid Attacks 

Acid throws are a sort of violent assault which are characterized as throwing an accident on another person’s body or an equated corrosive material intended to disfigure, torment, or kill. Acid throws are sometimes termed an acid attack. These attacks are perpetrated by people who hurl acid on their victims, generally, on their face, burn them, and damage skin tissue, which often exposes and occasionally breaks down the bones. Blindness and permanent cavity, as well as social, psychological, and economic challenges, may have long-term effects on these attacks.

Domestic Violence 

Domestic violence may be characterized as an adult who abuses authority to dominate another person in a relationship. In a relationship through violence, fear is established and other sorts of abuse are included. Physical abuse, sexual assault, and menace may be the subject of violence. Sometimes it might be more subtle to make someone feel valuable, to let them not have any money, or to leave the house. Under Section 12 of the Domestic Violence Act, 2005, an application may be submitted before the Magistrate. The Magistrate may give orders such as residency, protection, monetary relief, indemnification order. The spouse or his family, as well as the dowry request, can also file a complaint under Section 498A on cruelty.

Cruelty & Demand of Dowry

A new area was inserted into the Indian Penal Code, i.e. Section 498A, to limit the increasing occurrence of dowry torture and dowry killing. This Section provides that whoever is a spouse or a relative of a woman’s husband is subject to her cruelty, a time which maybe three years and a fine shall be penalized with jail. Cruelty herein denotes every deliberate action that may cause a woman’s life, limb, or health to commit suicide or to create serious damage or risk. Or harassment to force her to comply with any illicit demand or security, or failing to satisfy the demand. In 1983 the Criminal Procedure Code was later added to Section 198A. In 2005, a law was established on women’s protection from domestic violence to protect women against dowry harassment.

Pornography & Obscenity

Pornography shall be printed or visual material providing an explicit description, exhibition, or action of genital organs designed to elicit sexual excitation. For sexual excitement, pornography is the depiction of sexual subjects. The medium may include, for example, books, periodicals, postcards, photography, sculptures, drawing, painting, animation, sound recording, movies, and video games. Increased usage of IT technology, including Internet and media, resulting in a profusion of illicit websites containing obscene and pornographic material.

Voyeurism

After the 2012 Nirbhaya Rape Case, this offense occurred. Section 354C, IPC states that. The word “voyeurism” is appeasement that typically results from a hidden observation of the genital or sexual actions of another. This provision is split into two sections. First, whether the individual is seeing or capturing the image, and secondly if the individual spreads or disseminates that image.

Conclusion 

The stages in the life of women who suffers heinous crimes:

Stage 1 Feticide and Childhood

If economic or cultural preference exists for children, the diagnostic instruments for pregnancy can lead to women’s feticide.

Stage 2 Ageing School

Many girls do not have access to and completion of adequate education in elementary and secondary schooling compared with males and, else, parents and teachers may face prejudice in their education.

Stage 3 Teenagers

Many young girls become victims of online sexual abuse and sexual abuse, exploitation and violence, acid assaults, early marriage violations, and even HIV/AIDS.

Stage 4 Matrimony

After their marriage, many women are abused by their spouse and in-laws physically, monetarily, and emotionally.

Stage 5 Motherhood

Sometimes during and after pregnancy women are not given enough health care or good meals. Often a female fetus is forced to terminate.

Stage 6 Workplace

Women are commonly exploited, uneven remuneration for equal employment, and lack of promotion despite physical, economic, and emotional abuse.

Despite the number of laws protecting and safeguarding the rights and interests of women, there is an increasingly daily rate of crime against women and victimization. Two people are widely known to need to tango. It means that only legislation is not accountable for regulating and controlling the increase in crimes against women in our society. Suppression of the bad eyes on women and inculcation of social ethics, morality and values, respect for and honor for women in every human being is the necessity of the hour and can also reduce crime against women. However, stricter and stricter legislation is needed to prevent anyone who wishes to commit such crimes from having the guts to act to promote his objective.

Written By

Ashwin Singh

Symbiosis Law School, Pune

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