Friday, September 10, 2010

Delhi High Court asks student to do community service for harassing girl

Delhi High Court asks student to do community service for harassing girl

New Delhi, September 10,2010


Showing leniency towards an engineering student accused of sexually harassing a classmate, the Delhi High Court has quashed criminal proceedings by asking him to render community service with an NGO for a year and pay a cost of Rs 40,000. Justice Hima Kohli passed the order after the victim

submitted before the court that she has forgiven the accused for misbehaving with her.

"Having regard to the fact that petitioner is a young man and has a long life ahead of him and his future career shall be jeopardise if the criminal proceedings are continued against him," the court said.

The court directed the student Nitin Saxena, son of a government employee, to pay Rs 20,000 to the girl and the same amount to Nirmal Chaya, an NGO, within a week and directed him to do community service with Child Relief and You (CRY).

The court order came after both the complainant and the petitioner have settled the matter out of court on August 20 and prepared an agreement deed for quashing of the FIR.

Filing the FIR, the girl, a student of Engineering in Maharaja Agarsen college, had alleged her classmate repeatedly stalked her within the college campus and had sexually harassed her on October 17, 2008.

Meanwhile, the court has expressed its anguish over the college authorities' failure to prevent such incidents in the campus and said "regretfully, the college authorities have adopted an indifferent approach and did little to ameliorate the situation compelling the girl to lodge a formal complaint with the police."

High-earning wives to end in divorce

High-earning wives to end in divorce

High-flying career women, who make more money than their husbands and end up becoming the chief breadwinners in their domestic partnerships, are more likely to end up in a divorce, revealed a study.

Researchers admit that the reason is unclear, but it may be that male pride is wounded by not being the biggest earner in the household.

The finding comes from a 25-year study of more than 2,500 marriages, hot on the heels of other research showing that househusbands are prone to affairs.

With almost one third of British women earning more than their men, the results could sow doubt in millions of minds.

For the study, American researchers studied the marriages and income of more than 2,500 women who married for the first time between 1979 and 2002.

They found that those women who consistently made more money than their husbands were up to 38 per cent more likely to divorce than others.

Jay Teachman, of Western Washington University, said there could be several reasons behind the statistic.

For instance, financial independence makes it easier for women to find a way out of an unhappy marriage. Besides, dented egos - of both sexes - may also play a role.

"There may be 'wounded pride' on the part of the male that may lead to tension in the relationship. It may also be the case that some women react negatively to a mate that does not earn as much as themselves," the Daily Mail quoted Teachman as saying.

A sudden increase in hours worked was also linked to marriage break downs, according to the Journal Of Family Issues.
"This may simply be a reflection of a woman beginning to work more in response," said the professor.

For a happy marriage, Professor Teachman recommends a 60:40 split in income, with the husband being the highest earner.

Sexual abuse and power display – Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill be made GENDER NEUTRAL- DEMANDING NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR MEN

Sexual abuse and power display – Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill be made GENDER NEUTRAL- DEMANDING NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR MEN

You can speak about the condition of a nation by knowing the status of its womenfolk," Jawaharlal Nehru said this decades ago and fashion designer Ritu Beri quoted him at the launch of the serial "Kali – Ek Agnipariksha."

She added, "This way we (India) have a long way to go." The serial deals with the sexual harassment of women, an issue which can alone bring known faces – Renuka Chowdhury, Indira Jaisingh, Madhu Trehan, Ritu Beri, Dilip Cherian, Ranjan Kumari, Sundari Subramanyam Pujari, CA Sundaram – to one platform.

The jury debated the need to understand the reasons for cases of sexual harassment and the immediate need to put an end to it. While Madhu Trehan appealed for a change in the stereotypical upbringing of girls and boys in India,

Renuka's comment "Not all men are bad," served as a breather. On a serious note, Madhu said, "We have a National Commission for Women but there should also be a National Commission for men and parents to address the root cause for such a social evil. Parents should be taught to not adhere to the conventional idea – "Son, you are special!". it is important for men to learn to respect women."

According to Madhu, education alone can bring this much-needed change,
"When I had gone to watch " Bandit Queen" there was a scene in which Phoolan is gangraped. I was shocked but a group of people seated in the front row, which is usually not that expensive, cheered. And later when Phoolan kills her molestors, I heard people seated behind cheering her for her courage. It has nothing to do with money but education." But CA Sundaram wasn't much convinced. He said, "About 20 years back there were neither many educated people nor several harassment cases.

However, two decades down the line, there has been a spurt in the number of educated people and harassment cases." While everybody was trying to find out the rea son and ways to fight the social evil, Ashutosh Rana said, "Sexual harassment has nothing to do with gender bias. It is about display of power. When a man acquires muscle, money and education power, he thinks he owns what he likes. That is when physical assault is interpreted as glory! It's like 'Mujhe car achchi lagi and I should have it in my backyard, mujhe bangla achcha laga and it should be mine. similarly koi ladki achchi lagi toh mere paas honi chahiye," he said.

On being asked if stereotypical notions also exist in the fashion industry, Ritu said, "As someone who has been in the industry, I must say there are no gender biases. In fact we have men complaining of being harassed. All I can say is that it is all about education. It's a social disease. I think, all naughty boys should have daughters so that they know what is it all about."

Forget about freedom: SC to husbands

Forget about freedom: SC to husbands – Marry to be slaved by wife and her parents- husbands to become pet doggy

11 Jun, 2010, 02.53AM IST,IANS

NEW DELHI: Married men should forget about their freedom after they tie the nuptial knot as restrictions on their independence are like “dividends” they have to pay for matrimony, the Supreme Court said on Thursday in a divorce suit.

“Whenever a person is married, there is no question of independence,” Justice Deepak Verma said, hearing a divorce suit between Colonel Ajit Sharma (name changed) and his estranged wife and software professional Seema Sharma (name changed).

By making the observations, the court revisited the remarks of the vacation bench of Justice Markandey Katju and Justice Verma of 2009 wherein it had said: “Do what the wife tells you and never question her authority.”

Justice Katju had said: “If men want to rule their life then they should always be on the right side of their wife. Otherwise, a defiant husband’s life would be ruled by others.”

He said that if the “wife says turn right, turn right and if she says turn left, then turn left”. On Thursday, the observation about husbands surrendering their independence came when the court was told that Seema had wished “happy Independence Day” to her husband when both of them filed a divorce suit by mutual consent.

The bench of Justice Verma and Justice K S Radhakrishnan was hearing an appeal filed by Ajit seeking divorce from his wife. They have a 14-year-old daughter Priyanka (name changed) studying at a boarding school in Dehradun.

Initially, the court said: “We are not made to break up marriages.” Thereafter, the court counselled the couple to go for reconciliation. The two were told by the court that for them, the welfare and the future of their child should be the top priority.
However, soon realising that the couple could not live peacefully under one roof, the court worked out a package that could mitigate the difficulties of the mother who was to bring up Priyanka after separation.

The court asked Ajit to suggest a package that he was willing to offer his estranged wife so that she could bear the expenses of bringing up their daughter. The court said that the package should factor in inflation, price rise and the cost of child’s education, her marriage and other needs. It gave Ajit time to think over it.

When SC resumed hearing, Seema was told that besides Ajit bearing entire expenses of Priyanka’s education till senior secondary, he would pay her Rs 4 lakh and give a 250 square metre plot in Secunderabad in Andhra Pradesh.

Ajit said she could dispose the house to mop up more money. The package was in addition to the Rs 1.50 lakh that has already been given to Seema by him. An insurance policy of Rs 5 lakh in the name of their daughter has also been given to her.

After a second adjournment, Seema told SC that she wanted a plot of land in Delhi or Gurgaon and demanded an arrangement for their daughter’s education after school.

Mom-in-law safe from Domestic Violence Act

Mom-in-law safe from Domestic Violence Act

BANGALORE: Can a woman try another woman under the provisions of the Protection of Women From Domestic Violence Act, 2005? No, says the Karnataka High Court.

Clearing this confusion, the division Bench comprising Justice K L Manjunath and Justice B S Patil said a complaint under this act against her mother-in-law or sister-in-law or women relatives can be registered, but the police can initiate action against them (respondents) only under Section 498A of the IPC or any other suitable enactments of law.

The Bench gave this clarification while dealing with the petition filed by one Leelavati.

In respect of residential rights, custody rights or protection, women can file complaints against only male members under the Domestic Violence Act but not against female members like mother-in-law or sisters-in-law or any others, the division Bench clarified with regard to ambiguity of the meaning of the word relative, in the proviso in section 2(q) of the Act.

Leelavati, a resident of Okalipuram, had filed complaints against her husbandBhaskar, father-in-law Murugeshan, mother-in-law Nalini and sister-in-law Kavitha under this Act, before the magistrate court. This was challenged by her husband and others. The fast track court had ordered that except Bhaskar's, other names should be dropped from the complaint.

Leelavati challenged this decision before the high court. The single bench, while concurring with the fast track court, referred this matter to the division bench for clarification.

also @
Women can't be respondents: HC

Bangalore, September 9, DHNS:
In a judgment that is bound to have wide social implications, a division bench of the High Court has ruled that a case filed under the Protection of Women From Domestic Violence Act, 2005 cannot include women as respondents. 

A division bench comprising Justice K L Manjunath and Justice B S Patil has ruled that "the definition of the term 'respondent' as defined under Section 2(q) of the Act, does not include a female relative of the husband or the male partner of the aggrieved female or a female living in a relationship of the nature of a marriage."

The ruling stands apart from the ruling of four other High Courts of the country including the Delhi High Court. The matter had been referred to the division bench by a single judge to define the term 'respondent' following a petition filed by Leelavathi S against her father-in-law Murugesh, her mother-in-law Nalini and her sister-in-law Kavitha under the Domestic Violence Act.

The debate on the inclusion or exclusion of women as respondents under this Act has been a long standing one. Many have felt that the Act, which was meant to protect women also has become a tool for targeting women. The Indian Penal Code already allows a case to be filed against women under Section 498A for dowry harassment. A complaint filed under Domestic Violence Act also provides for the respondent to be removed from the shared household or can be prevented from entering the household