2nd March 2009
Will kids in the state ever get sex ed?
The CURRENT SCENARIO
March 2007 - State government bans sex education
Arpil 2008 – Education minister at that time, Vasant Purke, does an about turn, announces compulsory sex education in Class 9 and Class 11. Next day there is a furore in the assembly and it is decided to set up a committee to look into the matter
November 17, 2008 - Government resolution names 21 Vidhan Sabha and Vidhan Parishad members, including Purke and assembly opposition leader Ramdas Kadam as members of the committee. It also names 15 ‘experts’ which includes educationists and social workers from across the state.
Feb 10, 2009 – The only meeting so far of the committee is held in Pune, of the ‘experts’ group. Only 8 members turn up. The committee has sexologist, Dr Vithal Prabhu, paediatrician Dr.Sandhya Khadse, Professor Chhaya Bakare of Ruia College and several ‘sex educators’ attached to NGOs in Kolhpaur, Vardha, Latur and other places.
6th March, 2009
Crime against women on the rise in the city
The year that started with the molestation of two NRI women outside a five-star hotel in Juhu went on to witness a steep rise in crime against women. Annual crime statistics of the Mumbai police, obtained by HT, shows that more incidents of rape, especially involving minors, and molestation were registered in the city in 2008 as compared to previous years.
Police Commissioner Hasan Gafoor, however, said that the rise in figures has more to do with women reporting crimes rather than a rise in crime rate.
CRIME 2007 2008
Rape (minors) 124 147
Rape (adults) 48 69
Molestation 356 427
Raids on brothels 134 158
Girls rescued 293 295
Sex sells at India’s popular pilgrim sites
India’s popular pilgrimage sites like Puri in Orissa and Tirupati in AP are major attractions for sex tourism, especially involving young boys A year long study conducted in three major pilgrim sites – Puri, Tirupati and Guruvayoor in Kerala has found that young boys from poor families are being trafficked to these religious places for sexual gratification of visitors. Lured by money, victims find it difficult to leave the profession. 13 boys in Puri revealed that they preferred foreigners to domestic ones, since they got chocolate, toys, good clothes, besides being paid from Rs.50 – Rs.200 per day.
20th March, 2009
Times of India
Rural Thane sees rise in incest cases
Mumbai: Cases of incest have been increasingly reported from rural Thane over the past few years. Officials attribute this to more women coming out to lodge complaints against family members.
In August 2006, the Nala Sopara police arrested Satish Chaurasia (35) for sexually abusing his daughter and subsequently getting her pregnant.
The same year, the Tarapur police arrested Nitin Raul (46) for raping his foster daughter. The 13-yearold victim became pregnant but the abuse continued.
“Incest exists even among educated and well-to-do families. Alcoholism and borderline personality disorder can lead to incest,’’ said psychiatrist Harish Shetty. “There are instances where women do not support their daughters (victims) and stand by their husbands (accused) instead. A rise in such offences is caused by alienation and loneliness.’’
In August 2008, the Virar police arrested Rajendra Yadav (29) for molesting his 12-year-old niece during a game of “hideand-seek”. The girl had been living with Yadav after her father died in the 7/11 blasts.
29th March, 2009
Times of India
Rural sisterhood forms rings of steel for victims of rape
No institution assures them justice, no organization fights for their rights and no counsellor helps them pick up the pieces of their lives. But the initial findings of a nationwide study reveal that rural victims of sexual abuse are beginning to fight back in their own way. Call it the sisterhood of India Invisible. Mobilizing village communities, picketing police stations and ridiculing attackers are some of the ways rural women are using to take on their assailants, says an 11-state study conducted from October 2007 to December 2008 by a Delhi-based NGO Swanchetan. It used data collected by state police forces and NGOs working with rural victims of sexual violence.
Some say the change is a reflection of the growing awareness of rural women, especially Dalits. “In Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Maharshtra, women say that they will not tolerate (injustice). They have their constitutional rights and will protest,” says Ruth Manorama, who campaigns for Dalit women in Bangalore.
Mitra says that women are empowered when they form a collective.