Mangaluru, March 5: M C Nanaiah, Chairman of the state level expert committee that was formed to study and examine crimes against women and children, chaired the public hearing on crimes against women and children in DK district at Zilla Panchayat office in the city on Wednesday, March 4th.
Problems related to the exploitation of women and children, issues faced while dealing with rape cases and problems while dealing with cases of moral policing were discussed in the meeting along with representatives of woman organizations, NGO’s, and Sthree Shakti associations.
The committee comprises of 31 members. This committee is constituted by the State Government to study and suggest amendments to law on crime against women and children. The committee will review the report and suggestions and formulate opinions regarding amendments.
Nanaiah said, no government can completely prevent rapes from happening. We have stringent laws and NGOs are working to prevent such crimes. We have received many letters suggesting amendment of the law and punish the culprit severely, which cannot be done in a democratic country. Here the culprit can be punished only under the existing law, he said.
No government has undertaken any serious study or survey on sex workers. It is estimated that over one crore sex workers in India. Victim of sexual assault suffers from mental shock but only 25 to 30 percent of such cases are registered. Incidents of moral policing which are reported from Dakshina Kannada district. None has given them the right to indulge in moral policing. No one can take law into their hands, said Nanaiah.
Nanaiah speaking on the issues related to cyber crimes said, Cyber crime is more rampant than traditional crime. As the main servers of social media are situated in the US, it is difficult to deal with such crimes.
Sub-committee chairperson Motamma urged the DC and the SP to take special interest in dealing with sexual abuse in buses and instruct bus drivers.
Jyothilaxxmi said, there should be gender sensitization programmes for high school children. They should be educated about good and bad touch and teachers should make the children aware of this, she added.
Nanda Pais said, women’s are not safe. When a victim goes to complain to the police, she is not treated in the appropriate manner. Awareness should be created regarding sexual crimes even at gram panchayat levels.
Vani, a social worker said sexual abuse takes place in buses also and she urged life imprisonment for all convicts of sexual crimes.
Hilda Rayappan of Prajna Counselling Centre said, cases of sexual abuse are increasing and complaints are filed. But at the same time, a girl also fears that if she complains, her family will not support or accept her. Complaint boxes should be placed in every firm and institutions, she said.
Anitha Kini said that fast track courts should be established to ensure quick justice in such crimes. Nanaiah replied that already 10 fast track courts have been set up in the state and that problem is not with the court, but with judges who delay in giving verdicts.
Deputy commissioner A B Ibrahim said that in Dakshina Kannada today, infant mortality rate is low and cases of child marriage are rare. The scale of exploitation is very low in DK. Women police station is also set up in the city, he said.
“He said, there were cases like attacks on home stay and pub, and repeated moral policing incidents during which women were ill-treated. Cases of moral policing would be handled by the police department and only the police commissioner can provide the answer.
Police commissioner S Murugan said, cases of sexual abuse are registered without delay. Strict order has been given to the police officers to investigate the cases seriously. Sometimes, the delay in filing cases happens due to improper drafting of the complaint. However, if any police officer intentionally delays, then strict action will be taken, he said.
SP Dr Sharanappa said moral policing, is an offence and in no way connected to policing. Whoever takes law into his hands will be dealt strictly, he said and added that district-level meetings are being organized to deal with sexual abuse crimes. Regarding sexual abuse in buses, the bus owners are informed to take care of passengers during the RTA meetings. He also informed that that in all the police stations two women staff are appointed and that 10 were convicted under .rape cases in the district, he said.