President Pranab signs ordinance on sexual violence amid opposition from women`s groups
New Delhi, February 3, 2013: President Pranab Mukherjee on Sunday gave his
assent to the anti-rape law ordinance so as to put a check on crime against women.
The President has given his assent to the Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance 2013, a Home Ministry spokesperson said.
The ordinance is based on the recommendations of the Justice JS Verma
Committee. The Union Cabinet on Saturday had cleared the ordinance at
the specially-convened meeting which went beyond the Verma Committee's
recommendation by providing for capital punishment in the cases where
rape leads to death of the victim or leaves her in "persistent vegetative state".
In such cases, the minimum punishment will be 20 years in jail which can
be extended to the natural life of the convict or death, sources said,
adding discretion will be with the court. After the Delhi gang-rape incident, there were vociferous demands for
death penalty, but the Verma committee has not favoured it.
But the Committee had proposed to replace the word 'rape' with 'sexual
assault', which will also help to expand the definition of all types of
sexual crimes against women. It also proposed enhanced punishment for other crimes against women like
stalking, voyeurism, acid attacks, indecent gestures like words and inappropriate touch and brings into its ambit 'marital rape'.
However, women's groups have planned a protest at Jantar Mantar on
Monday against the ordinance. They feel it lacks teeth to fight sexual crimes against women and had
urged the president not to sign it. Notably, being brought against the
backdrop of the gang-rape and brutal assault of a 23-year-old girl in Delhi in December that shook the
country, the ordinance entails changes in the criminal law by amending
Indian Penal Code (IPC), Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) and the Evidence Act. Source: Zee News
Nashik youths develop 'Me Against Rape' Android app for women's safety
New Delhi, January 16, 2013: Three youths from Nashik have come with an app that women can use as an
emergency alert system alarm and seek assistance from friends or family
in time of distress. The software called 'Me Against Rape' has been
developed in view of the recent incidents of crime against women.
Makers of the app, Gunwant Battashe (23), engineer Anup Unnikrishanan
(24) and graphic designer Jayesh Bankar (23) say the Me Against Rape app
is available for Android-based smart phones for free.
The app features a one-touch helpline facility, recording facility, and
can send location and time details every 10 minutes — including latitude, longitude, address and Google Maps link. The developers of the
app believe the app would be very helpful in fighting against atrocities to women.
"If a woman is in any kind of a trouble, she has to just press the help
button which will send an SMS to her relative or contact person as registered informing him/ her about her," say the trio.
The developers also showed off the features of the app to Nashik Commissioner of Police, Kulwant Kumar
Sarangal, who said it is an
"excellent" option. The app ends multiple messages, images, videos, sound bites and other
details such as location status with the press of a button. Users can
also press the SOS button to alert contacts listed (maximum three) as
the emergency contacts via SMS and e-mail. Source: Economic Times
Women are strong, no less than men: Amitabh Bachchan
Mumbai, January 7, 2013 (PTI): At a time when the nation is reeling from the
shocking gangrape of a 23-year-old girl, megastar Amitabh Bachchan is
pleased to see a woman win the five-crore jackpot on his game show
KBC, showing that women are no less than men. Housewife Sunmeet Kaur Sawhney has become the first female contestant to
have won Rs five crores on Kaun Banega Crorepati.
Sawhney, a home tutor and a resident of Mumbai, couldn't believe she had
cracked the jackpot, until the show's host, megastar Amitabh Bachchan
hugged her. "I couldn't believe that I won! Mr. Bachchan had to come and hug me for me to believe that I have won Rs.5 crore. My
husband also had to come and tell me so," she told IANS.
The episode featuring her victory will be aired next week. Her plan is to donate a part of the money for prayer rituals.
"I want to sponsor some rituals of our Punjabi tradition. So, a part of
the amount will go there. We will decide what to do with the rest of it later," added the 37-year-old.
She hails from Chandigarh, but Sawhney has been staying in Mumbai since
a few years now. Married to a small-time actor who has done some side
roles in Hindi films, Sawhney has two daughters. "We have rented a place in Mumbai and have been
staying here since a few years," she said. In the last season of KBC, Bihar-based Sushil Kumar had won the
mega-prize of Rs.5 crore.