Asks government to act on it without any delay

Welcoming the report of Justice Verma Committee on Amendments to Criminal law, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has said the recommendations were comprehensive.

In a statement, the CPI(M) Polit Bureau said the proposals were comprehensive and situate sexual violence against women within a broader framework of socio-economic conditions and issues concerning governance, the law, politics and social attitudes and the reforms required to ensure justice for women.

Appreciating the work put in by the committee, which has completed its work before time, the CPI(M) asked the government to act on it without any delay.

The concrete suggestions concerning changes in the rape and sexual harassment laws should be placed and passed in the coming session of Parliament. The party suggested the setting up a multi-ministerial committee with a time-bound mandate of one month to look into the other recommendations concerning different agencies such as on police reform, on bringing armed forces personnel under the purview of the criminal laws and withdrawing protection under the AFSPA, changes in The Representation of the People Act, on khap panchayats, on improvement of conditions in juvenile homes, and on specific facilities for disabled women.

AIDWA hails recommendations

The All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) also welcomed the committee recommendations. It said these were wide ranging suggestions including proposals to tackle the multiple sources of discrimination and inequality affecting women.

“We note that many of the suggestions made by the national women’s organisations, including the AIDWA, which were placed before the committee, have been incorporated in the report. Some of the positive changes which are recommended include changing the definition of rape to make it gender specific and other forms of rape between same sex persons has been provided for separately,” it said in a statement.

“A longstanding demand of the women’s organisations that has been accepted by the committee is that marital rape should be recognised as rape. It has expanded the categories of aggravated forms of rape and included rape by members of the Army and paramilitary forces,” it said.

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