November 16, 2010

BBC news

Row over Amazon sales of paedophile advice guide

A self-published guide giving advice to paedophiles that was on sale through online retailer Amazon is stirring up controversy, with some threatening to boycott the website.

The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure: a Child-lover's Code of Conduct has now been removed from sale.

But Amazon had defended the listing, saying it did not promote criminal acts but also avoided censorship.

Amazon allows authors to submit their own books and shares revenue with them.

Before authors are able to sell a work on the site, they are asked to read a set of guidelines, which bans offensive materials.

But Amazon does not specifically state on its website what material it deems offensive, instead saying "probably what you would expect".

Boycott threat

In recent hours the book listing appears to have been removed from the Amazon website. But there has been no response yet to BBC requests for a statement from the retailer.

It had previously adopted a defiant posture, saying in a statement: "Amazon believes it is censorship not to sell certain books simply because we or others believe their message is objectionable.

"Amazon does not support or promote hatred or criminal acts, however, we do support the right of every individual to make their own purchasing decisions."

The author, listed as Philip R Greaves II, argues that paedophiles are misunderstood and purports to offer advice to help them abide by the law.

Individuals on the micro-blogging website Twitter have asked Amazon to remove the book from its site, while some are threatening to boycott the retailer.

One Amazon user posted a comment on the site, saying that "to see a book like this on Amazon's 'shelves', so to speak, is very troubling to me".

The title is being sold for the Kindle electronic reader.



Activists bemoan lack of laws to deal with child sexual abuse

As SPS Rathore, the molester of a minor who was driven to suicide following the abuse, got bail, welfare foundations held a workshop in the city on Friday to sensitise policemen about child sexual abuse.

The workshop was conducted by the National Institute of Public Cooperation and Child Development in collaboration with the Childline foundation. It saw participation from assistant commissioners of police, senior police inspectors, community police and members of the crime branch.

“With a rampant increase in the cases of child sexual abuse, this workshop is an attempt to sensitise policemen about the psychological, legal and medical aspects related to child sexual abuse, as they are the one who deal with such cases on a daily basis,” said Jojo Verghese, city coordinator, Childline.
A matter of serious concern is the weak judicial system in India. Ranjeet Chouguley, director of the Justice and Care organisation, spoke about the legal aspects of child sexual abuse. He pointed that no specialised legislation for child sexual abuse are yet in place.

Speaking with DNA, he said, “The Juvenile Justice Act is a welfare Act but does not look at the criminal aspects of putting perpetrators behind bars. As of now, for child sexual abuse cases, we need to rely on provisions of legislation meant for adults. This is really unfair. We are hoping to implement some concrete laws once the Child Protection Bill gets passed in the winter session.”

Neeta Athale, faculty at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, talked about the psychological aspects of child sexual abuse. What is worrisome, she said, is that a large number of cases do not get reported. This is because in 75% cases, the person who subjects a child to abuse is a family member, relative or a person who holds a position of trust with the child.

Jaspal Singh Ragi, ACP of Meghavadi, who attended the workshop, said, “Child sexual abuse is a sin to humanity. Cases are on the rise, because the laws are weak and the perpetrators easily go scot-free.”

Talking about the workshop, he said, “This workshop was very useful and clarified a lot of doubts that we had. I would recommend this workshop to be conducted at zonal level with more officers participating.” Such awareness campaigns are a step forward to ensure a healthy and happy childhood.


Times of India

Payouts for rape victims soon

Plan For.150Cr Corpus Cleared By Expenditure Panel,Awaits FinMin Nod

New Delhi: A week after the Union Cabinet gave its nod to a legislation that will protect women from sexual harassment at the workplace,another landmark scheme to provide financial aid to rape victims could soon be a reality.

The government has cleared the decks for providing the victims or their legal heirs with financial aid to ensure restorative justice in the form of legal and medical assistance,shelter,counselling and other support services.
The planmooted by the ministry of women and child development (WCD)has been cleared by the expenditure finance committee and awaits a nod by the finance ministry.It entails the creation of a corpus of Rs 150 crore.
Under the scheme,victims will receive interim financial assistance of Rs 20,000 and restorative support services of up to Rs 50,000.The final assistance can be up to a maximum of Rs 1.30 lakh.

While this relief can be accessed by a woman,minor girl or legal heirs of a victim,the aid can go up to Rs 3 lakh under certain circumstances.In special cases involving minor girls,mentally-challenged or handicapped women,those suffering from HIV/AIDS or STDs,the amount can be higher.Rape is one of the most violent forms of crime against women,which impacts her socially,mentally and psychologically.This scheme will provide restorative justice by not just giving immediate relief but also addressing long-term problems like shelter,medical and legal aid, Krishna Tirath,WCD minister,said.

According to guidelines laid down by the ministry,the interim relief should be paid within three weeks of filing an application with a district board.

Taking a humanitarian view of the circumstances,the ministry has allowed for a time period of 60 days from the date of recording an FIR to file an application.The police station will also be required to forward a copy of the medical certificate and preliminary investigation report within 72 hours.The district board can disburse the interim relief of Rs 20,000 after a preliminary inquiry as far as possible within 15 days and in a maximum of three weeks.On the assessment of the needs of the affected woman,the board will be empowered to arrange support services like medical treatment,psychological counselling and alternative accommodation.The final amount of Rs 1.30 lakh can be directly disbursed by the district board within a period of one month from the date of which the affected person gives her evidence in the criminal trial or within a year from the date of filing an FIR.

The claim by a victim can be rejected by the board if the affected person does not inform the police,has delayed filing a complaint or FIR,turns hostile during the trial,appears collusive or the complaint is not based on verifiable facts.The scheme also envisages setting up of a state and national criminal injuries relief and rehabilitation board.


Under the proposed scheme,rape victims will receive interim financial assistance of Rs 20,000 and restorative support services of up to Rs 50,000 The final assistance can be up to Rs 1.3 lakh.In certain cases,it can go up to Rs 3 lakh This relief can be accessed by a woman,minor girl or legal heirs of a victim The interim relief should be paid within three weeks of filing an application with a district board This scheme will provide restorative justice to rape victims by addressing long-term problems like shelter,medical and legal aid Krishna Tirath

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