Protecting marriage across castes
This is in reference to the editorial "Right to marry" (The Sentinel, February 8). Eight years after the tiol Commission for women (NCW) proposed a special law to punish honors killings incited by Khap panchayat, the Supreme Court has said that adults are free to marry persons of their own choice and hurting couples, or summoning them before clan members, groups, or a khap, is absolutely illegal.
The prevention of crimes in the me of Honor and traditiol Bill, 2010 was an outcome of the spate of murders and dishonorable crimes in the me of honour. Though killings and crimes were reported mostly from North India - especially Harya, Punjab, Delhi and western Uttar Pradesh as well as west India- the problem was widespread and almost every part of the country has witnessed such incidents.
A crime in the me of honour is one of a range of violent or abusive acts. This includes emotiol, physical and sexual abuse and other coercive acts.
Those instrumental in committing these killings are families of the couple. Either they kill the couple themselves or in association with other person from the same State or Khap or community based panchayats.
The purpose of these panchyats or associations is to terrorize people and prevent associations, including marriage, on the basis of choice. They justify their actions in various ways, but commonly on the basis custom and tradition. These acts show a violation of fundamental rights, including the right to life and liberty. Khaps exercise their authority in various ways: they demand payment from couples, impose social or economic sanctions on them, order that they or their families be boycotted, divest the couple of any land or property that belongs to them, and harass, intimidate, or murder them.
The new law recommended that anyone who kills or hurts an adult couple who chose to marry of their own free will should be punished for murder or any offence under the Indian Pel Coda. The Government agreed to the Supreme Court's suggestion to frame guidelines recognizing honour killing as a separate offence.
Satish Kumar Sarma,
Kalyanpur, Biswath Chariali.
Calls for arrest
Few days back, tiol Conference (NC) MLA Akbar Lone shouted ‘Pakistan Zindabad!’ on the floor of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly. When the controversial MLA was asked by media for doing such thing in the august Assembly hall, he was not apologetic. Rather Akbar Lone went further by his logic that since BJP legislators were shouting ‘Pakistan Murdabad ‘ his blood boiled and he raised slogans of ‘Pakistan Zindabad ‘. He further went on to add that since he is a Muslim he gets hurt when someone raises anti Pakistan slogan. Now is this MLA by his statement trying to generalise all the Muslim populace of India? I am sure that there are many who would definitely condemn Akbar Lone’s act. Such brazen display of love for tion’s arch rival in full view of the public and getting scot-free can happen only in India. By being secular, India has handful of traitors like Akbar Lone, Farukh Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, Mani Shankar Aiyyer, etc who continue to support a rogue tion like Pakistan. Senior Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyyer’s recent statement in Pakistan where he demean his people and democratically elected government. Had such statements aired in any other country definitely serious sedation charges would have been applied on the concerned person. But in India anything can be said, done and the concerned person is left alone in the guise of freedom of expression. Such kind of leaders should be immediately arrested and put behind the bars.
Dr Ashim Chowdhury,