“I raise up my voice-not so I can shout but so that those without a voice can be heard…we cannot succeed when half of us are held back.” – Malala Yousafzai
India gained Independence decades ago. We, modern men & women, call ourselves the citizen of the free country and talks about freedom of thoughts & speech in the social gathering, at home among friends & family and most important – social media Platforms. Guys, Let’s pause! Do you think we have freedom? No! We are sure; the same answer must have come to your minds as well.
It is ironical that a country which is address as “BHARATMATA,” is positioned at the 29th rank among 146 countries across the globe by Gender Inequality Index. Male domination is one of the significant issues in such country is shameful.
If you think that it is more dominant in uneducated and lower strata, then I would like to throw light on the fact that most women victim comes higher & educated class. In one of the research done by renowned NGO in our Capital – New Delhi, it has been observed that most numbers of women victim are from South Delhi which is one of most high profile area of India. Indian movies & series like Highway & Four More Shots Please! have beautifully raised this topic to mass.
With such inspiration, we at Aditri planned to contribute little through this blog by highlighting lesser-known rights which are present in our constitution for women empowerment.
1. Women have right to Zero FIR
According to Sec 154 of Criminal Procedure Code, First Information Report of any cognizable offense committed can be filed at any police station irrespective of the location in which the crime was committed. The FIR is registered under number 00 and sent to the right police station for further investigation.
So girls, next time any police officer tries to neglect you giving the stupid reason that the case is of another police station. Just Bang! And put Sec 154 forward to him!!
2.Women have the right to remain Anonymous under the right to confidentiality
It is a known fact that many crimes against women are not filed, altogether, and this happens because of the one simple reason –Girls are taught from childhood “Tum Parivar Ki Izaat Ho.” For women whose family have encrypted this statement in their minds, constitution wrote Section 228-A of the Indian Penal Code which says the disclosure of a female victim’s identity is a punishable offense. This rule also covers the police and the media. It helps in saving victims from social victimization or ostracism.
3. Women have right not to get arrested at night
According to Section 46 (4) of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 which states that except in exceptional cases, no woman can be arrested after sunset and before sunrise (between 6 pm and 6 am), and if such exceptional circumstances do arise then a prior written permission should be taken from a Judicial Magistrate by a woman police officer.
4. Women have the right to take legal action against stalkers
It is a fact that crimes always give you a silent knock. No women should take knock lightly, and our government also says so. They have provided Section 354D of the IPC gives the women from all walks of life the right to file a complaint against perpetrators that lurk in the neighborhood, office areas, schools, and colleges etc. A complaint from any part of India can be filed with the National Commission for Women against an offender if he/she tries to follow a woman, attempts to contact her to foster personal interaction repeatedly despite a clear indication of disinterest, or monitor the use by a woman of the internet, email or any other form of electronic communication. Then the commission will take the matter up with the police.
5. Women have the right to register virtual complaints
It is tough to seek justice if women do not feel safe and secure in the police station. They fear the humiliation and the bullying, therefore, the Delhi Police issued guidelines by which a woman has the privilege of lodging a complaint via or registered post, addressed to a Senior Police Officer of the level of Deputy Commissioner or Commissioner of Police. The officer then directs the SHO of the police station of the area where the incident occurred to conduct a proper verification of the complainant and lodge an FIR. The police can then come over to the victim’s residence to take her statement.
Swami Vivekananda, one of the greatest sons of India, quoted that, “There is no chance for the welfare of the world unless the condition of women is improved, It is not possible for a bird to fly on only one wing.” However, no matter whoever explains what to this society.
If a woman’s attire shows cleavage, she is a slut!
If a woman is with two boys, she is a whore!
If a woman is spending life without her man, she is characterless! And then comments are endless.
India needs to transform its colossal women force into an empowered body through the change in the mentality of society backed by strict implementation of these rights.
There has been amelioration in the position of women. They have started standing for themselves and mentality of society has also started changing. This can be seen by the types of TVCs air by various brands. One of the best examples is of Cadbury Diwali TVC of 2018 in which dad wants her daughter to drop his teenage son safely at Diwali night to his friend’s place for the celebration. He wants her to daughter to ensure that his son does not pose any harm to any female.
Society is reforming, but real empowerment is still awaited!