Renuka Chowdhury, 54 MoS (Independent Charge) for Women & child Development

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New Delhi: Renuka Chowdhury, 54 MoS (Independent Charge) for Women & child Development

Result: -1/10

She was given independent charge of the Women and Child Development Ministry in 2006 after WCD, earlier under the Human Resource Development Ministry, was made a separate ministry. After three years, there is no marked difference in the condition of women and children in the country.

Her brief

In its manifesto in 2004, the Congress said that a nutritious mid-day cooked meal scheme will be introduced in primary and secondary schools across the country and the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) will be universalised to provide for a functional anganwadi in every settlement and full coverage for children below the age of six. Chowdhury was also expected to reduce incidences of maternal and child mortality and malnutrition.

Reforms derailed

In 1997, judicial guidelines were set on protection against sexual harassment at the workplace, but the “high priority bill” is still shuttling between the National Commission for Women (NCW) and WCD.

Child labour has not been abolished, apart from a few baby steps taken by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), under the WCD Ministry.

The demand for additional guaranteed financial support from the expenditure finance committee for the ambitious and controversial proposal to give fortified pre-packaged food—instead of hot cooked meals—to poor children as part of the revamp of the ICDS was trashed by the Planning Commission.

OPPORTUNITIES BLOWN

The UPA government dropped attempts to strengthen the anti-Sati law, more than 20 years after it was first enacted. The proposed law was expected to increase prison terms for those committing as well as glorifying the practice.

After the Nithari incident, Chowdhury stressed on the need for a database of missing children. Till date, the NCPCR is still juggling to get the figures.

Proposed to the Home Ministry that it grant amnesty to women prisoners. A year after, the issue remains untouched.

Once talked of taking up the issue of dumped NRI wives but there has hardly been any step forward in the direction.

State child commissions were supposed to be set up. A Bill was passed in Parliament in 2006, but other than in Delhi and Kerala, the commissions haven’t been set up.

What was she thinking?

After the Mangalore pub attack by the Sri Ram Sene, where young women were attacked in an alleged incident of moral policing, she championed the cause of progressive city youth by calling for a “Pub Bharo” campaign and claimed that Mangalore had been “talibanised”.

High point

The enforcement of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act (2005) in October 2006.

Low point

When she said “women must not trust their men” and guard themselves against HIV/AIDS, her statement drew flak from all quarters.

VIEW FROM THE SHADOW

“Except some debates and wordy duels, nothing substantive happened. WCD is a very important department.” —Murli Manohar Joshi, former HRD minister in the NDA government

Did she get your vote?

She lost in Khammam, Andhra Pradesh, by a margin of 1.24 lakh votes.

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CrPC Amendment Notification most urgent

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Cr. P. C. (Amendment) Act, 2008, should be Notified, without any further delay.

To,
Dr. Manmohan Singh,
Hon’ble Prime Minister of India ,

The Code of Criminal Procedure Code was amended on or about 26th December, 2008, and subsequently it was assented by the President of India. But till now no Notification is issued by the Government in terms of Section 1(2) of The Code of Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2008. But why Government of India withholding the necessary Notifications, in respect of a matter of so much immense public interests?

Whether under shying since, Advocates are opposing it, because amendment will effect the syndication between the Unethical-Advocates, and Corrupt Police Officials?
Whether Amendment was made without any will of the Government, so now Government also wants to put it for hanging?
Whether Amendments were unwarranted?
Whether Amendments are opposed by Police Force from across India , since it will certainly affect the pocket of the corrupt police officials?

I attended a Seminar organised by Rakshak Foundation, wherein former Law Minister of India, and renowned Supreme Court Lawyer: Shri Shanti Bhusanji, Justice S N Dhingra of Delhi High Court, Justice V. S. Malimath, Professor Madhava Menon, and Shri Ashish Gupta, IPS, made their excellent comments on the above subject, supporing for immediate notification of the Amended Law. Justice V. S. Malimath, was appointed in 2000-2003, as Chairman of Committee, for review of 140 years old Cr. P. C., and his committee made elaborate recommendations for changes in Cr. P. C., including those inserted in newly amended Law. Professor Menon was also a Member of the aforesaid Committee headed by the Justice Malimath. From the aforesaid recourse it was came to my knowledge that `Long Ago’ “Dharamvira Committee” had said that about 60-65% arrests are executed unwarrantedly. In serious cases, successful punishment results are not more than 5-6% and in patty cases it is about to 30-40%. They also elaborated that earlier our law was based on a concept that even 98% criminals may not be punished, but one innocent should not be punished. This concept failed to protect innocent, whereas criminals trained to commit crimes, on regular basis. Whereas, aforesaid Committee in its recommendation followed a new principal that Every Criminal should be punished, whereas, not a single innocent should be harassed or punished.

During the aforesaid recourse, I also understood that Advocate’s Strike is just only because they wants to continuity of criminal syndication between Corrupt-Police-Officials, Broker-Advocates, and also Few-Members of the Judiciary, those are benefited from the unwarranted arrests of the innocent people, through exploitation of money from them. It was also reported that during the sixties ratio of the Criminal matters with the Civil Matters in the Courts were about 30-70, which now reversed as 70-30. So Government should accept, that it is a responsible State, and very much concerned with the larger public interests by notifying the Code of Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2008, (except those provisions which requires development of necessary Institutional Network or Infrastructure), without any further delay, and should send a strong message that being a responsible State it is not ready to surrender before Striking Advocates. In this context, I must refer that Advocates conduct is mentioned in detail in a Interim Report by Srikrishna Committee, headed by Justice B. N. Srikrishna, former Supreme Court Judge, dated 4th March, 2009, which was appointed on 26th February, 2009, by the Supreme Court, in Civil Writ Petition No. 94 of 2009.

Justice Srikrishna in his interim report to the Supreme Court strongly condemned the behaviour of the lawyers. It has said that the violence was started by the lawyers and that the lawyers have acted like hooligans. The Commission has said that the police cannot be blamed for the excesses. Justice Srikrishna has also blamed the HC Judges, particularly Acting Chief Justice Mukhopadhyaya for being too soft on lawyers. Arguments are going on at the Supreme Court.

Full Text of the 22-page Interim Report is online @ http://www.hindu.com/nic/interimreport.pdf
(Some of the Excerpts, From the Interim Report, dated 4th March 2009, on the Incidents that Occurred on the 19th February 2009 At the Madras High Court by Mr Justice B.N. Srikrishna, Former Judge Of The Supreme Court:

“Far from being the upholders of the rule of law, the lawyers seem to have behaved as hooligans and miscreants. The incidents that transpired over a last month or so make it clear that the lawyers seemed to be under the impression that, because they are officers of the Court, they are immune from the process of law and that they could get away with any unlawful act without being answerable to the law enforcing agency.

It is most unfortunate that the soft policy adopted by the Acting Chief. Justice of Madras High Court and its administration sent out clearly a wrong message that encouraged and emboldened the lawyers into becoming law breakers.

Undoubtedly, the political crosscurrents, from the Sri Lankan Tamil issues and caste based issues, contributed to and aggravated the situation.

It should have been made clear to the lawyers from the beginning, in no uncertain terms, that whatever their political ideologies, the Court premises could not be utilized for airing them.

Unless a detailed inquiry is made into the role played by each of the lawyers in the rioting mob as well as each of the 19 Constables and/or Officers of the police force, it will be difficult to pin-point the responsibility on the individuals, Considering the series of events that had transpired over a period of about one month culminating in the Mr. Subramaniam Swamy incident on 17th February 2009, it is possible that the police expected further trouble on 19th February 2009 when Mr. Subramaniam Swamy’s case was posted for hearing.

Further, the fact that only one of the 17 accused could be arrested on 18th February 2009, coupled with information from their sources as to expected trouble on 19th February 2009, might have perhaps persuaded the police presence in large numbers armed with lathis and shields.

Though it was highly irregular on the part of armed policemen to be deployed inside the High Court premises, the extra-ordinary circumstances might afford a justifiable excuse to them.

I would submit that the Hon’ble Supreme Court should take this opportunity to exercise its extra-ordinary Constitutional powers and lay down sufficient guidelines for the behavior of the lawyers within and without the Court premises as the Bar Councils have not been acting as an effective regulatory body of their professional conduct.

It would be ideal if the 21 Advocate’s Act is amended to ensure a better disciplinary mechanism of the profession of law, since it affects not only lawyers but also litigants, the administration of the justice in the country, and finally the rule of law itself.

Until such time that appropriate Legislation is made, it is desirable that this Hon’ble
Court should formulate appropriate guidelines to be followed by lawyers and enforced by all Courts of law.”

Therefore, I hope that Government of India, for the betterment of the society, should show its solidarity in favour of Amendments by notifying the same, without any further delay and should also ensure the development of required Institutional and Infrastructural Network required for application of some of the provision of the amendment of the Law.

Milap Choraria

TRUTH SHALL ALWAYS PREVAIL
Milap Choraria Editor: Suchna Ka Adhikar / RTI TIMES
National Convenor : Movement for Accountability to Public (MAP)

Now, hubby files a dowry case

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Extra news

The man claimed that he was given dowry though he did not ask for it

A husand facing a dowry case, has sought to turn the tables on his wife and in-laws by filing a case against them alleging that they had given him dowry though he had not asked for the same.

Virat, a software engineer, alleged that a false dowry case was registered against him. He was imprisoned for two days and later released on bail.

Virat, however, continued to claim that he had not taken any dowry and alleged that his wife had filed a false complaint against him just to get him into trouble.

However, as per the law, giving dowry is as much a crime as demanding it and hence, attracts equal punishment under Section 3 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961.

Police records clearly stated that his wife and in-laws had given him dowry and he had not demanded it. Based on their statements, Virat filed a case against his wife and in-laws for giving dowry.

The case has been admitted in the Xth Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Court (ACMM), Mayo Hall, in Bangalore. The judge has ordered the police to investigate the matter and file a first information report (FIR).

This is a first of its kind case in Karnataka where a husband has filed a case against his wife and in-laws for their ‘confessional admission’ of giving dowry ‘reserving his right to defend himself against allegations’.

Talking to DNA, Virat said that the misuse of the Dowry Prohibition Act and Domestic Violence Act should be stopped or it can get many innocent people into trouble. The central government should examine the laws and make necessary amendments to avoid such misuse, he added.

Virat’s case is now sure to arm organisations battling for harassed husbands.

In the last few years, several outfits have emerged to fight the injustices being meted out to married men.

Multiple cases, containing false and baseless allegations under Section 498A and the Domestic Violence Act, are being filed against husbands and their parents and relatives, these outfits have alleged.

Press Release Announcing V Day Dharna in Bangalore

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Sub: Peaceful protest against rampant misuse of dowry laws and domestic violence laws.

Save Indian Family Foundation (SIFF), an NGO dedicated to promote the cause of Gender Equality and Family Harmony, is organizing a peaceful protest against the deteriorating Indian family culture due to rampant misuse of Section 498A IPC, Domestic Violence Act and the dowry laws. The protest will be held on the 14th February 2009 on M.G.Road in front of Mahatma Gandhi Statue from 10: 00 AM to 1 PM. Nearly 150 people from all walks of life like, Engineers, Doctors, Businessmen, Service class, Government Employees, Software Professionals, NRIs, Chartered Accountants, Finance Consultants to name a few will be joining us in our endeavor to raise voice against this spreading “Legal Terrorism”.

In the last few years, marriage has become a crime for Indian men. Multiple cases, containing false and baseless allegations, under Section 498A and the Domestic Violence Act are being filed against Husbands and their parents and relatives. These false cases are filed with a pervert motive of, either treating the Husband as FREE ATM MACHINE, separate him from his immediate family, to grab his property, to hide the wife’s illicit relationships and extra marital affairs, to deny access of his children to the father, or for any reasons other than actual Dowry Harassment and Domestic Violence.

There is no investigation done on the complaints received, nor any evidences are verified before registering a case and arbitrarily arresting people. Because of such malpractices, more and more number of married men are losing their jobs and committing suicides as well. Some shocking statistics, regarding the misuse as per data available from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB),

  1. 1,23,000 women (mothers, sisters and other female relatives of husbands), have been arrested in the last four years (2004-2007) merely on the basis of complaints by wives under Section 498A, without trial or investigation, whereas even the barbaric British Government arrested only 20,000 women in 40 years.
  2. 57,000 married men have committed suicide in 2007, of which 16,000 are directly due to domestic abuse. In the last 11 years (1996-2007) 1,56,000 married men have committed suicide directly due to domestic violence. Equivalent figures for women are 83,787 which means in the last 11 years the number of married men’s suicides has been 1.86 times that of married women’s suicides.
  3. Family disputes and Domestic Violence is the number one killer for married men as 26% of suicides are directly attributed to the above cases.

In addition to the above, a study done by the Center for Social Research, a Govt. body has found that there is only 2% conviction in dowry cases. Keeping in mind the fact that in dowry cases, it is the accused that have to prove their innocence rather than prosecution proving them guilty, as the accused is innocent until proven guilty. If the complaints had been true there should have been 100% conviction. But an abysmally low rate of conviction only shows that the complaints are entirely false, uninvestigated and totally unprosecutable.

But the criminal justice system has broken to such an extent that it has become a handy tool in the hands of unscrupulous people to utilize it as a tool to settle personal scores. Some of the problems that people face who are falsely accused in such cases, are:-

  1. Their productive years are wasted in the precincts of a litigating corridor fighting an unnecessary battle that ultimately declares them innocent after a long and arduous legal battle.
  2. Their social prestige and reputation are brutally murdered and perhaps never restored.
  3. Many people lose their jobs and commit suicide being unable to bear the pressure.
  4. Multiple cases in various cities, as per the wish of the wife, are filed for the same false stories and husbands are forced to pay maintenance even before the matter is decided, in the name of interim maintenance and in many cases it has been found that the wife is either earning or well capable to earn but does not do so merely to extort maintenance money from husband. Sometimes they even earn but lie in the courts and get away with it.
  5. The process itself is more barbaric than the punishment.

It is not merely a false case that is lodged. But on one complaint the entire state machinery of law and order is set in motion against the husband and his family who are humiliated, terrorized and traumatized by the process and even blackmailed and extorted in the name of ‘settlement and compromise’. The criminal justice system has lent itself to be used as a state sponsored tool in the process funded by tax payer’s money, 82% of which is paid by men. Even the Honorable Supreme Court in its various landmark judgments has coined the term “Legal Terrorism” to such rampant misuse of dowry laws and urged the Government to take immediate steps to put checks and balances in the system.

Very recently Honorable Chief Justice of India Shri. K.G.Balakrishnan has expressed serious concern over the growing misuse at a Seminar organized by the National Commission for Women. Added to that, Honorable Chief Justice of Karnataka Shri P.D.Dinakaran had also voiced the problems that men face when false cases under Domestic Violence Act are lodged against them at a workshop organized for Awareness of Domestic Violence Act. Even Honorable President of India Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil has agreed in a recent speech, that there is widespread misuse of the dowry laws by women in the country. Time and again various judges of the High Court and Supreme Court have repeatedly expressed displeasure on the misuse of dowry laws and Domestic Violence Act and have recommended several corrective measures which have fallen on deaf ears so far, sadly enough.

SIFF receives weekly 250 – 300 calls over its various helplines from husbands all over India and abroad about not only the misuse, but also how they are facing rampant domestic violence from their wives and in-laws which can be physical, emotional, mental, and economic in nature. And SIFF has been creating awareness about this issue through its various awareness campaigns wherein it has repeatedly urged the Government to take note of this issue. However, the current form of the Domestic Violence Act does not allow husbands to make a complaint of domestic violence and get relief. And there is no proposal from the Government to review it either despite SIFF and its partner NGOs making repeated requests to the Government.

SIFF is deeply concerned that the family system in India is in grave danger. When foreigners are looking up to Indian customs and marrying as per Indian traditions, our own people have gone blind in aping the western culture in the name of Westernization. Our cultural values and respect for tradition is getting lost as the youth, today is more concerned about its own liberalism and individuality rather than family values. Vested interests call the Indian family as oppressive and brainwash the young minds against the family system. The Government is urged to call upon a national debate to address the issue of the dying family system of India.

In this protest on 14th February 2009, SIFF places its demands before the Government and the society as follows:-

  1. Form a National Commission for Men and a Men’s Welfare Ministry to look into the issues that men are facing.
  2. Clear the huge backlog of pending matrimonial cases and appoint evening courts and more judges for the same.
  3. Allow the citizens, especially the youth to participate in policy decisions affecting their life.
  4. Eliminate all gender biased laws and replace them with Gender neutral laws by replacing the words “Husband” and “Wife” with “Spouse” and “Man” and “Woman” with “Person”.
  5. Eliminate all redundant legal provisions of applying for maintenance by the wife.
  6. Amend the Domestic Violence Act which currently does not cater to female to female violence, female to male violence and male to male violence.
  7. Police should be kept away from the family matters and there should be no ‘counseling’ whatsoever in police station.
  8. Child interviews should be totally banned in child custody cases as in most of the cases the custodian parent poisons the child against the non-custodian parent. Interviewing such a child is a torture on the child.
  9. Misusers of laws should be punished with severe punishment. In a criminal case either the complainant or the accused have to be punished depending on whether the complaint is false or true. No settlement should be allowed in criminal cases.
  10. Owing to skyrocketing suicides due to family distress and domestic disputes, a national debate needs to be called for. The debate needs to address the issues the current family system faces.
  11. There should be no discrimination of taxes at the same salary levels on the basis of gender.
  12. The police, the mediators and the courts need to be sensitized about the issues of men and should be trained adequately to understand the problems of a husband before terrorizing him into a forced settlement. Monetary compensation for a broken marriage should be the last resort and should be resorted to only in the rarest of rare cases and cannot be more than six months of the income of the earning spouse.

Invitation to Dharna Against Legal Terrorism

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Is the pain of a mother / sister less when she her son / brother dies than when her daughter / sister dies?

Save Indian Family Foundation invites you to a peaceful protest against the rampant and blatant misuse of pro-women marital laws against men resulting in large scale suicides of married men.

Our Demands:-

  1. Clear the Pendency of cases in Family Courts.
  2. Give more judges and more Family Courts.
  3. Make all gender biased marital laws Gender Neutral.
  4. Check misuse of these laws.
  5. Stop Treating Men as FREE ATM MACHINES
  6. Check High Rate of suicides of married men.
  7. Establish National Commission for Men, and
  8. Men’s Welfare Ministry,

To address the above problems as well as scores of others.

Date: 14 February 2009

Time: 9: 30 AM to 2: 00 PM

Venue: In front of Gandhi Statue on M.G. Road, Bangalore

Invitees: All citizens of India.

Supported by:-

  1. Save Family Foundation, Delhi
  2. MyNation Foundation, Delhi
  3. Gender Human Rights Society, Delhi
  4. Rakshak Foundation, Delhi
  5. Mother’s and Sister’s Initiative, Delhi
  6. Protect Indian Family Foundation, Mumbai
  7. Indiya Kudumba Pathukappu Iyakkam Chennai
  8. All India Forgotten Women, Hyderabad
  9. Rishtey, Hyderabad
  10. Save Indian Family Foundation, Nagpur
  11. 11. Bharat Bachao Sangathan, Kolkata.

Contact:

Virag – 9986378801 (English)

Panduranga Katti – 9432853272 (English)

Shiva Shankara – 9743183369 (Kannada)

Prakash – 9880436929 (Kannada)

9342853272 www.saveindianfamily.org 9845143274

JOIN OUR PROTEST AGAINST ABUSE OF WOMEN AND ELDERS!

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Every 5 minutes an innocent man is arrested

Every 20 minutes an innocent woman is arrested

Every 2.5 hours an innocent elderly person is arrested

under IPC SECTION 498A

…without proof or investigation

…upon mere allegations of cruelty or dowry harassment.

YOU could be arrested too,

treated guilty until proven innocent,

forced to endure 7-10 years of false prosecution,

ONLY because you are a husband or relative of a husband.

Under IPC SECTION 498A,

mother and sister are not considered women,

elder abuse is considered social service.

Join us in our

NATIONAL PROTEST AGAINST ABUSE OF WOMEN AND ELDERS

and raise your voice against misuse of IPC Section 498A

When: Sunday, 6 April 2008, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Where: Indira Park/NTR Stadium, Lower Tank Bund, Hyderabad

Contact: 9704683163 (Smt. Challa Uma)

FIGHT LEGAL TERRORISM!

Save Indian Family!

Save India!!!

Organizers:

All India Forgotten Women

Bhaaryaa Baadhitula Sangham (A unit of Raksha)

Sahana

Save Indian Family Foundation

Helpline numbers:

Delhi: 9810611534, 9911119113
Mumbai: 9224335577, 9869323538
Kolkata: 9830151555, 9830927619
Chennai: 9884607376, 9941012958
Hyd’bad: 09848280354, 9989146466
B’lore: 9845143724, 9342853272
Pune: 9923056460
More helplines at: http://mynation.net/contact-us

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