Britain’s south Asian women rights groups have urged the Indian Government to work with women’s organisations to draft and implement “gender-just laws’’. They also called for the Justice Verma Commission’s recommendations on removing immunity from prosecution for sexual crimes from the army, paramilitaries and police, to be immediately implemented.
“The SP of Dantewada Ankit Garg, responsible for the sexual torture of Soni Sori, must be stripped of the Presidential Police Medal for Gallantry awarded on Republic Day 2012,’’ they said in a statement after a meeting organised by the London School of Economics Gender Institute together with South Asia Solidarity Group and Imkaan.
More than 200 activists, academics and students discussed the anti-rape protests in India and the way ahead for the movement against gender violence in India and Britain.
Kalpana Wilson of the LSE Gender Institute described the Delhi protests as “unique’’ and “highly significant for feminist movements globally’’, while Professor Naila Kabeer of SOAS, University of London, called for “zero tolerance’’ of violence against women to be included in the post-Millenium Development Goals.
Marai Larasi of Imkaan voiced concern over the increase in violence against women in Britain and criticised the tendency to see it through “a racist lens as a problem of Indian, or Caribbean, or African culture’’.
The meeting also discussed how India’s neoliberal policies had heightened violence against women. It decided to hold a protest outside the Indian High Commission on Saturday to highlight the rise in gender violence.