Walk to Equality – the Empowerment of Women
College Name: St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai
1. Nikita Tilwani (Group Co-ordinator)
2. Pratiksha Tripathi
3. Priyanka Barve
4. Saanaee Naik
5. Rajeshree Nikam
• The figures alongside are very telling
about the scenario of women
empowerment and their walk towards
• To combat this issue, our presentation
highlights lacunae in the legal
framework for crimes against women,
female foeticide and prostitution.
• An important solution for women’s
empowerment is self-defence training
and we herein provide a programme
for making this provision effective,
efficient and acceptable in the rural
and urban setups alike.
• The issue of dowry is attempted to be
dealt with through state-sponsored
marriages; which can also be used as
an incentive for the self-defense
WALK TO EQUALITY – EMPOWERMENT OF
REFORMS IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM- IN VIEW OF
VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
• Following the spine-chilling and horrific rapes in our country we look forward to how
the rapes could be stopped, there is only one refrain: change in attitude towards
women; the legal process of dealing with the crime must speed up; and men must be
sensitized towards women’s issues.
• It is unfortunate that police reforms have been waiting to be implemented since 1980s
and that the formation of a strong Anti-Rape Bill (by the JS Verma commission) came
only after a spine chilling horrific gangrape in New Delhi.
• What does the World Population Report have to say about Rapes In India? It says
that a rape is committed every 54 minutes, molestation every 26 minutes, kidnapping
or abduction every 43 minutes, eve-teasing every 51 minutes, dowry death every 1
hour 42 minutes, criminal offense against women every 7 minutes.
• Strong and effective implementation of The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013.
• Reform criminal justice system: The low conviction rate for rape-only 27 percent
convictions — is why rapists are not that scared and victims reluctant to go to court.
Police need better investigation methods, find the right culprit, ways to preserve
evidence also witness protections programmes. Some of the important changes — like
quicker trials enabled by more judges and courtrooms are reforms the whole criminal
justice system needs.
4 steps to ensure an effective criminal justice system -
•Prevention: The community and the Police need to work together during this stage. This
involves security at vulnerable places and at critical hours and voluntary citizen services.
•Investigation: This is primarily the responsibility of the police but involves the community in
the role of witnesses. Measures such as installing CCTV cameras in buses and state-run public
transport should be taken. Installation of CCTV cameras should be mandatory in buses. There
are schemes where corporate houses have been asked to take up areas and work on keeping them
clean and green. On similar lines they can be asked to install CCTV cameras.
•Prosecution: If someone comes out on bail, it should be conditional. They should have to
report to the police station at least once a week about good behavior.
•Punishment: This falls in the ambit of law.
•Solutions within the ambit of law- Setting Fast Track courts on priority basis to deal with
issues of Women. This shall include Sexual Crimes, Rapes, Marital rapes, Molestation, Dowry
Cases, Dowry deaths, exploitation in any form, acid attacks, also Stalking and Voyeurism etc.
The punishment in such cases shall be minimum 7 years and maximum Life terms and Death
Penalty for serious crimes as prescribed in the Anti Rape bill 2013. Sale of acids should be
regularized and be given only to licensed holders.
There should be a time cap for the disposal of such cases, for eg. Maximum of 6 months, or 1
year depending on the nature of cases.
FEMALE FOETICIDE – THE CURRENT
• The PCPNDT Act, 1994 identifies the problem of
female foeticide and explicitly prohibits it.
• But the problem still persists and is only getting worse not just
in rural but also in the so-called elite and educated parts of
• The consequences of sex-selective abortions are long-term and
grave – marriage squeeze against men, increase in crime and
violence against women (which is already rising in terms of
number and seriousness), effect on marriage payments and
economic behaviour, effect on men’s sexual behaviour and
health, effect on women’s status and gender equity process.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE PROPOSED SOLUTION
• Establishment of a special raid division in the jurisdiction of every police station in
the country, with special attention to states having a sex ratio of less than 950
females per every 1000 males.
• Conducting surprise, uninformed raids once every 6 months but at unspecified time
of the year in each institution permitted to acquire the pre-natal diagnostic
equipment under the PCPNDT Act.
• The special raid division will have access to the said equipment, the records of the
institution, the right to seize the equipment if found to be illegally acquired or if the
equipment is not of the standard specified under the Act, the right to immediately
suspend licences of the institutions showing a shady record and warrants to arrest
the erring doctors and their aides.
• Special monitoring devices to be installed on the equipment which would record the
sonographies carried out. A deadline to be intimated to all institutions carrying out
the processes to have the devices installed on their equipment. New machines being
sold to necessarily have a certification of meeting the standards specified in the
The said solutions are over and above the effective implementation of the PCPNDT Act
to treat the problem of female foeticide.
PROSTITUTION IN INDIA
• Prostitution is rampant in India from ancient times. Prostitution itself
(exchanging sex for money) is not illegal, but the surrounding activities
(operating brothels, pimpimg, soliciting sex etc.) are illegal.
• At least 100 million people are involved in human trafficking in India and
90% of human trafficking is intra-country.
• 90% of the prostitutes are in the 15-35 age group and their average work
life spans 15 years.
• There are about 3 million prostitutes in India of which 40% are children.
So, the child prostitute population is close to 1.2 million.
• Prostitutes operating on the street and brothels earn between 2,000 to
24,000 rupees ($43-522) per month, whereas call girls make 40,000-
800,000 rupees ($870-17,300)
Rehabilitation centers to be set up in all the metropolitan cities, wherein, employment should be guaranteed to
every rescued prostitute.
Employment will be guaranteed in the new governmental projects, where, they will be firstly trained and made
fit for the post and then appointed in self defense education programs.
Juvenile rehabilitation centers to be set up for child prostitutes. They would be provided education under the
right to education act and brought in the mainstream
The government and police can take help of multiple NGOs working in the same area.
3. AWARENESS GENERATION in women about their rights and anti traficking laws
through popular media and advertisements.
Suppression of Immoral Traffic in Women
and Girl Act -1956 , Prevention of Immoral
Traffic Act-1956 And Immoral Traffic
(Prevention) Act-1956 which punishes
owners of brothels and the middle men
involved in trafficking women
The punishment to be increased to a minimum of 7 years
for having violated any clause in the acts.
Clients to be arrested and punished upto atleast 7 years.
The fine to be increased to a of Rs. 20,000
Amendement act of 2013, section
370criminalising anyone who recruits,
transports, harbors, transfers or receives a
person for the purposes of exploitation.
Exploitation to be not only mentioned but
also defined to include sexual or physical
1. LAWS AND ACTS
• Martial arts or karate is mastering an art in itself. People always consider martial arts
as the best solution for women’s self defense. But can it actually help?
• A handicapped or old woman or a child cannot get much help through martial arts.
When a gang of 3 or more men are against one woman, martial arts as a self defense
can be very difficult a solution
• Martial arts or any sport is usually discouraged because of the girl’s virginity being in
danger. Also, the mentality that girls have to wear short clothes comes in the way of
girls playing sports or even being interested in it.
METHODS OF WOMEN EMPOWERMENT
• Masses, paticularly rural, find it hard to trust many government schemes and thus,
refrain from participation. Moreover, women are the worse bargainers and have hardly
access to facilities that are provided by the government for their empowerment.
• The populace is involved in those schemes that provide them monetary incentives,
direct employment or any other such material benefit that would assist them in meeting
their daily requirements. We propose the following solutions for the further empowerment
of women in both rural and urban society.
1. Self-Defense Training
• The solution is extensive self defense training. This would include training in running,
jumping long fences, driving, cycling, knowledge of important helpline numbers. Another
effective solution would be screaming training, where women are put in tough situations
and are taught to scream for help.
• For the rural and urban educational institutioins, this self defense training can be made
compulsory in schools and colleges which will have a record of marks and attendance.
• In order to encourage this training in rural areas, free camps would fit the bill. Along with
this, the incentive of water supply could be provided to the women who participate in these
• Water is an important resource and since women have to go a long distance in search for
water, if we provide the village with one tanker(10,000 litres) each household could get 5
liters depending on the members, it would encourage women to engage in these camps and
bless 2,000 households with water. This would solve the problem of water supply and
encourage a lot of women to participate
• Also, if the house has a lot of members then the amount of water provided could increase
depending on the number of women in the self defense training. This will automatically
ensure more members in the training camps.
2. STATE SPONSORED MARRIAGES
• Dowry stands to be one major problem for the rural families till date. It is a custom
among most households, small or big and this has led to worse situations like that
of dowry death and suicide by the parents because they cannot afford their girl’s
marriages. The program of state sponsored marriages aims at reducing this setback
• With state intervention in the matters of marriage, the responsibility or moreover,
the burden of marriage shifts from the household to the state. This provision
reduces greatly the problem of dowry. Since the state is a part of it, there are lesser
demands and lesser scope for exploitation from the grooms family.
• State sponsored marriages will promote the participation of the women in the
schemes of the government, especially those households who have girls. It will
provide a great incentive for the women because the liability of the girls falls the
highest on the mother and it will promote a sense of independence in them.
• With the participation of the women, it sets the trend for the household and then for
the community to be a part of this scheme and thus, liberates an entire generation,
as it spreads awareness among the women for the need of defense and security and
thus, this awareness is passed on to the new generations.
• Economic and Political Weekly (vol XLVIIL, no. 35)
• The Sexual Offences (Special Courts) Bill, 2010
• The world population report – UNFPA - United Nations
• J. S. Verma committee report - Various Sources
• The Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques
(Prohibition of Sex-selection) Act, 1994.
• news.bbc.co.uk – Statistics on Prostitution in India.