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Women Empowerment, Gender Justice And The Role Of Law

Women empowerment means uplifting women to be economically self-sufficient, independent, and having positive regard to empower them to confront any troublesome circumstance. The empowered women ought to have the option to take an interest during the process of decision-making. This paper attempts to analyze the status of women in India and the necessary steps which have been taken to prevent crime against women and enhance their situation.

Welcome to the women's world,
Here you'll get the illusion of equality, carefully hiding the essence of patriarchy
Women empowerment refers to the upliftment of the spiritual, the political, social, educational, and economic strength of women and their communities. In India women empowerment heavenly depends upon the geographical conditions as it may vary from urban to rural societies as well as social status as caste. Though there are plenty of policies operating on the level of national as well as international level but still it has been noticed that India has been still lacking to some extent mostly on the rural level.

According to a survey, it has been noticed that 50% of the the population comprises women in society but still, we don't have an exact sex ratio as it still depicts more men as compared to women. It is very obvious to say that women have been worshipped as goddess, either we talk about navratras or sarawati pooja female goddess has been worshipped but at the same time women were treated as slave in the same society.

Objective Of The Research
  1. Society should know about the need of women empowerment
  2. To access the awareness towards the society.
  3. Factors that are influencing empowerment of women.
  4. Schemes that has been laid by the government
  5. To identify the issue of gender justice
  6. Obstacles that has been arriving on the path of women.
  7. Suggestions and role of law in the light of findings.

Research Methodology
This paper is basically descriptive and analytical in nature. Through this paper, an attempt has been made to analyze women's empowerment in India. The data used is purely from secondary sources according to the need of study.

Crimes Against Women In India

Indian society faces an extensive list of crimes when it comes to crimes against women. All over the sub-continent, women are encountered with rapes, acid attacks, honor killing, dowry deaths, and many such heinous crimes. According to the data released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), 3,886 per million reports have been filed in 2017 for crimes against women. These statistics have shown a rapid increase with 3,793 per million reports in 2016.


Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code defines rape as sexual intercourse done by a man with a woman without her consent and will. The definition of rape was amended and it was further interpreted as any sexual act amounting to the derogation of sexual dignity of a woman. Any form of penetration done by a man into a female's private parts is considered rape.
India has been characterized as one of the countries with the lowest per capita rates of rapes. [1]

Most rape cases are not even reported because of the fear of humiliation of the victims. 98% of the rapes were committed by someone known to the victim.[2] The rates of conviction of the offenders also have observed a downfall over the last 4 decades. Out of all the rape trials in India, one out of four lead to a conviction.[3] Forth most common crime against women in India is rape.

Marital Rapes

As per the exception to section 375 of the IPC, sexual intercourse between a man with his own wife, where the wife is not under the age of 15 years, is not rape.[4] The wife's consent is based on the common law rule of marital exemption where the wife has already given her consent to the husband by marrying him.

Sexual offenses by husbands against their spouse is mostly ignored by society, in recent times law has changed for the betterment of the current situation but this is still one of the silent social evils that continue to degrade the dignity of the female body and objectify women as inferior to the male of the house as well as the society.

Gang Rape

Gang rape is defined under section 376D of the IPC as where a woman is raped by one or more persons constituting a group or acting in furtherance of a common intention, each of those persons shall be deemed to have committed the the offense of rape´┐Ż[5]

Some cases of gang rape have even showed a grudge of the members of the gang against the victim, the thirst to humiliate and harm the female draws the offenders to commit such a heinous crime.

Dowry Death

Dowry death is another form of evil that is prevalent in Indian society. Section 304B of IPC deals with dowry which states that the death of a woman caused by any burns or bodily injury or occurs otherwise than under normal circumstances within seven years of her marriage and it is shown that soon before her death, she was subjected to cruelty or harassment by her husband or any relative of her husband for, or in connection with, any demand for dowry, such death shall be called dowry death[6].

India has the highest number of dowry-related deaths in the world according to the NCRB. The victim not only is subjected to physical harm and cruelty but also faces immense mental and emotional torture and harassment. Some of these deaths are disguised in the form of accidents and suicides.

In 2012, 8,233 dowry death cases were reported across India. This means bride burning happens every 90 minutes, or dowry issues cause 1.4 deaths per year per 100,000 women in India.[7]

Acid Attacks

One of the most violent and traumatizing forms of crime against women is an acid attack or acid throwing. It involves throwing toxic acid or similar forms of coercive substance onto the person with an agenda of disfiguring, harming or killing her. The practice of acid attack not only physically renders a female's whereabouts but also harms her self-image and confidence. The most common kinds of acids used to victimize a person are sulfuric and nitric acids.

Approximately 1,483 acid victims have been found in the period of 5 years, 2014-18, according to the statistics given by the NCRB. Section 326A and 326B of the Indian Penal code provide the definition and the punishment relating to acid throwing and acid attacks.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence, also known as domestic abuse is a kind of violence that happens in a domestic setting, mostly in marriage. Many forms of domestic violence such as physical, mental, emotional, reproductive, verbal, and others can be evident in Indian households. According to a National Family and Health Survey in 2005, the total lifetime prevalence of domestic violence was 33.5% and 8.5% for sexual violence among women aged 15-49[8].

Section 498A of the IPC defines the meaning and punishment for domestic violence. The term cruelty mentioned in the section gives a brief insight as to any form of the voluntary and willful act which harms a woman physically or even drives her to take her own life. Domestic violence is in many cases not reported by the victim because of the fear of further torture by her spouse or his family, and even parental pressure and norms formed by society.

Present Situation
Talking about Nirbhaya to Hyderabad rape case it can be said that women of India still have a threat on them.

According to national crimes record bureau, 52% of the women were found the victim in crimes reported in India. India has been named the most dangerous country in the world for women in a recent Thomson Reuters Foundation Survey.

Apart from this, it should be proud to say that, though women are still fighting with their empowerment but at the same time there are personalities like aruna jayanti, zahabiya khorakiwala , chitra Ramakrishna , shikha Sharma who have touched the sky.

Gender Justice In India

Though the constitution guarantees gender equality, it has not been implemented in the country, in spite of more than 60 years of independence - Justice V. Gopala Godwa
Over an extensive stretch of time, Gender Inequality and differences existed in practically all social orders of the world and henceforth the issue in regards to sex disparity in India is certainly not an ongoing improvement.

The confounded arrangements of conceptions that are stereotypically ascribed to women are passed on age by age in light of the fact that these over a range of time became social standards and have not been addressed. Gender Equality aims to balance in the number and in the relative power, status, and role of women in society.

Gender is essentially a socio-culture term that contains in itself the socially credited roles, ascribes, and practices given to a man and a woman in the society. Consistently we have seen that Indian culture has subjugated the mind of women, she has been segregated from the very commencement of birth through abortion.

Indeed, even before birth, female feticide and sex-specific premature birth, battering during pregnancy, constrained pregnancy, and so on are exceptionally normal in a nation like India. After birth, as well as women throughout her life cycle, faces segregation and brutality. She faces passionate and physical maltreatment, differential access to nourishment and therapeutic consideration, genital mutilation, sexual maltreatment by relatives and outcasts, assault, inappropriate behavior at the working environment, dealing, constrained prostitution, endowment-related viciousness, and so forth.

The Preamble of the Constitution obviously expresses that fairness ought to be given to all residents as far as status and opportunity. It must be comprehended that guarantying Rights to individuals of a network gets futile except if and until those Rights are similarly delighted in by all individuals from the network. The composers of the constitution planned for guaranteeing equity of status and opportunity through the Preamble.

The Preamble of the Constitution buries Alia discusses social, political, and economic equity for all citizens of the nation. The Preamble discusses social equity which ought to be comprehended in the light of guaranteeing cancellation of a wide range of imbalances that may result from disparity in wealth, status, class, caste, sex, race, title, and so forth.

Economic equity guarantees that each individual ought to get his only levy for the work given by him/her independent of caste, creed, sex, status, and so forth. Political equity guarantees that superfluous differentiation among people in political issues ought not be permitted. Honorable lives contain in themselves the essence of equality and freedom.

Why There Is A Need For Women Empowerment?

Reflecting on the Vedas Purana of Indian culture, women is being worshiped such as LAXMI MAA, goddess of wealth; SARSWATI MAA, for wisdom; DURGA MAA for power.
Even though women are still deprived of:
  1. Decision making power
  2. Freedom of movement
  3. Access to education
  4. Domestic violence
  5. Sexual harassment and trafficking
  6. Nutritional health and sanitation
  7. Employment opportunities and so on

We will celebrate one more Women's Day on 8 March. As we do as such, it is the ideal time to check out how women in India, which contain a large portion of the nation's populace, have advanced as far as social and economic status, which underscores their strengthening. It is pitiful to take note of that except for a couple of high achievers; ladies are still underrepresented in professional and public life.

In the UN Human Development Report's (2019) Gender Inequality Index, India is at the position 95th, out of 129 nations. In the Gender Gap record (World Economic Forum) 2019, India's position is 108th out of 144 countries due to rising differences as far as women's wellbeing and interest in the economy. In terms of women's health and survival and economic participation India is now ranked in the bottom five.

Ways To Empower Women

Ensure safety
Out on the roads, women battle an implicit war each day. Believe it or not, there is no place of refuge for women anywhere, since the greater part of these terrible cases happen inside homes and workplaces. While the legislature needs to start severe laws for the wellbeing and security of women, we also need to keep our eyes open for wrongdoers.

An educated girl can not only live life on her own terms, she can very well change the world. As responsible citizens, it is our duty to take that first step. From that urchin girl who begs for alms to that ragpicker who lives under the bridge, every girl needs and deserves to be educated. Teach one, teach all, and open new pathways for her bright future.

safety isn't simply battling crooks yet additionally making a sheltered, survivable condition for women everywhere. Guarantee a sheltered, comprehensive condition and regular health check-ups.

Save a Girl
We center around women empowerment once in a while, yet in what capacity will we start the means referenced above when there will be no woman? girls in numerous part of the world including India is murdered before birth. The reason are many, however, the outcomes are horrendous.

Teach Job Skills
A small skill is enough for a woman to start a career. Be it gardening, sewing or craftsmanship, these efforts can help them start a small-scale business of their own. Share new ideas with them and help them learn because women empowerment begins with small initiatives

Raise your voice against gender inequality
Most importantly, raise your voice. Stand beside every woman and help decline the pervasive sexual orientation the difference in all the strata of society.

Give her freedom
"Don't stay out till late, stay within your limits." At each progression, we will in general imply restrictions on women. This is the ideal opportunity to change the condition. Try not to tie them in the chains of conventional perspectives. Give them the opportunity they deserve. On the off chance that you wish to change something, change perspective and see what incredible achievers women can turn into.

Women Empowerment Schemes

Mahila E-Hatt

It is a direct web-based promoting stage propelled by the Ministry of Women and Child Development to help women business people, Self Help Groups (SHGs), and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to feature items made and benefits rendered by them. This is a piece of the 'Digital India' activity.

Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao

The "Spare the Girl Child" development was propelled on 22 January 2015, it is a joint activity run by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Ministry of Human Resource Development. Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao - The plan was propelled with an underlying subsidizing of Rs 100 crores. It fundamentally focuses on bunches in Uttarakhand, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Delhi, and Haryana.

One-Stop Centre Scheme
Famously known as 'Sakhi,' it was actualized on first April 2015 with the 'Nirbhaya' finance. The One Stop Centers are built up in different areas in India for giving asylum, police work area, lawful, medicinal and directing administrations to casualties of viciousness under one rooftop coordinated with a 24-hour Helpline. The toll-free helpline number is 181. Here is a rundown of Sakhi focuses the nation over.

These focuses can be reached for:
  • Emergency Response and Rescue Services
  • Medical Assistance
  • Help in lodging FIR/NCR/DIR
  • Psycho-social help/counseling
  • Legal aid
  • Help police/courts by providing video conferences facility

The Support to Training and Employment Program for Women (STEP) Scheme aims to give aptitudes that offer employability to women and to give capabilities and ability that empower women to become independently employed/business people. A specific venture will be for a length of as long as 5 years relying on the nature, sort of exercise and the number of recipients to be undertaken. Divisions incorporate Agriculture, Horticulture, Food Processing, Hand-looms, Tailoring, Embroidery, Handicrafts, computers, and so on.

IT empower benefits alongside delicate aptitudes (soft skills) and the ability for the working environment, for example, communicated in English, gems and jewelry, travel and tourism, hospitality, and so forth.

Nari Shakti Purushars

The Nari Shakti Puruskars are national-level honors perceiving the endeavors made by ladies and foundations in rendering recognized administrations for the reason for ladies, particularly powerless and underestimated ladies.

Constitutional Provision

Women need specific human rights because of women's disadvantaged social position. More money being spent on male members of the family on their education and health and young men having more choice and control over their access to higher education. Grooms receive and don't have to pay dowry and men have more control over domestic decision-making.

For example: the use of contraception, the number of children, etc.

The rights enshrined in the constitution for women in India are as follows:
Article 14: Equality before the law
The the state shall not deny to any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India. This provision provides equality to those who are discriminated in Indian society. It safeguards the dignity of all the minor sections including women.

Article 15: Article 15 prohibits discrimination on the grounds of sex, religion, race, caste or place of birth. No citizen has the right to discriminate against the individual on the basis of aforesaid criteria. The state shall not discriminate any person and deprived them of any legal justice.

Directive Principles Of The State Policy:

The directive principles ensure that the state shall promote the welfare of the people in all areas of the society including economic and political justice.

Article 41: Right to work and education

Article 41: directs the state to provide with an equal work opportunity and education.

Article 42: Provisions for a just and humane condition for work and maternity relief

Sexual Harassment Of Women At Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition And Redressal) Act, 2013:

The recent development in society called for proper acknowledgment of the problems faced by working women all of India. The act provides safety to women at the workplace and also ensures to safeguard the dignity and honor of females.

Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956:

This act not only strives to abolish women trafficking but also has the purpose to counter prostitution. All over the world women, children and men are trafficked for the purpose of prostitution and forced labor, which is also prevalent in India. ITPA plays a great role to eradicate this social evil.

When we welcomed you into the women's world, the new era, and in the dawn of new beginnings. We welcomed a women prime minister, a female president, and women in our defense forces. We saw the female athletes getting us gold and actresses getting national awards. We accepted the change in our workforces and began the new era. Still, somehow the problem and difference continue to persist.

The legal and political reforms, lead the women of 21st-century walk hand in hand with the men of 21se century but the basic ideology had still not changed. A woman everyday fights with patriarchy at home and then go to her office. She's not stopped to leave her house but before leaving she needs to cook and clean and do all other household chores because it's her duty and still in the majority of homes in this country, men do not do even the basic chores of their own home.

The time is changing and we need to change with it. the open arms that men showed to the women in workforces, they need to walk with some pride into their own kitchens. As a society, we need to change the basic aspects and accept that if women are equal to men, so are men equal to women. Women empowerment starts within our families, workplaces, and neighborhoods. Appreciate those superheroes who start their day much before you and end it much later.

  1. Gregg Barak. Crime and Crime Control: A Global View: A Global View. ABC-CLIO.p. 74
  2. Sirnate, Vasundhara (1 February 2014). "Good laws, bad implementation". The Hindu. Chennai, India. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  3. Sethi, Abhijeet Singh (19 March 2015). "3 years after Delhi rape, conviction rates same". Retrieved 22 February 2017
  4. Sec. 375, IPC, (45 of 1860)
  5. Sec. 376D, IPC (45 of 1860)
  6. Sec. 304B, IPC (45 of 1860)
  7. Provisional 2011 Census Data, Government of India (2011)
  8. Women's Empowerment in India National Family and Health Survey. Retrieved 2015.

Written By: Mridul Y Suri.
- Student of The GGSIPU University, DWARKA, pursing BBALLB(5th year)

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