Cybercrime: Women’s panel calls for stricter punishment

The State Women’s Commission will urge the State government to amend cyberlaws so as to make punishment for cybercrimes more severe.

Speaking after the mega adalat of the commission in Kozhikode on Monday, commission member M.S. Thara said most people in the State were unaware of the use of technology and the concept of privacy. The idea of severe punishment for cybercrimes was mooted after the commission heard a complaint filed by four nuns about how the entire community of nuns in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts were defamed through a social media post. Though the post was later deleted, the person who posted it continued to post comments in the same humiliating manner, Ms. Thara told reporters.

“We hope if the punishment is severe, the crimes will come down,” she said, adding that cyberattacks on women and children had become a routine affair of late.

The case related to the nuns was handed over to the police cyber cell for further investigation.

Meanwhile, one person was booked on the spot for trying to videograph the adalat proceedings. “That person had no business at the adalat. He had some ulterior motive in filming it,” said Ms. Thara.

Divorce cases

The commission member also raised concerns about the rising number of divorce cases in the State. She said the rate of divorce was higher in the case of love marriages than in the case of arranged marriages.

“A couple is on the verge of divorce just because a few of the woman’s ornaments turned out to be gold-plated when the husband tried to pledge it. He demanded divorce on the grounds that he was humiliated despite their 12 years of marriage and three children,” said commission member E.M. Radha. “These are decisions taken on a whim without much thought. The aftermath is often disastrous,” she added.

A total of 57 cases were considered at the adalat on Monday, of which 12 were resolved while three were set aside until the respective authorities filed a report. One case will be considered during the full bench sitting of the commission while 41 cases have been set aside for the next adalat.

“The public has the notion that the women’s commission is the answer to any issue connected with women and that it has judicial powers,” said Ms. Thara, while referring to a case in which police and Forest officials humiliated a woman in connection with a crime committed by her husband. “She has filed a police complaint and has also moved the judicial first class magistrate court at Perambra. She also approached the women’s commission. The family seemed unable to process the information that there was nothing more that the commission could do other than censuring the officials in question.”

The commission also heard a case in which a women’s self-help group was allegedly cheated by the Suchitwa Mission in connection with the setting up of a waste processing unit.

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Printable version | Oct 23, 2021 4:25:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/cybercrime-womens-panel-calls-for-stricter-punishment/article29434022.ece

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