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Honour Based Violence: A Prime Offence

Hey there, Iím Nirmal Siva Ganeshan from School of Law Presidency university Bangalore, This Article is about the Honour crimes in India which violated the right to live of both men and women and what all are the support and services provided by the Indian Government to the Victims.

Introduction
This Act of shame is done by the family members with their community help just to maintain the decorum of their caste. Yes, just to prove that their community is in big status and it continues to stigmatize community. Nobody can violate the court rule! if they violate then they should be punished so, the adults are free to marry they have rights to decide their future partner but according to people who engage in honour killing falling in love outside their community is the crime and they will proudly do this Act of shame in order to label their community. And the sad part here, there is no special Legislation for honour killing in India.

According to a ruling on honour crimes by the supreme court of India honour based violence can be linked to the situations like Loss of virginity outside marriage, pre-marital pregnancy, infidelity, having unapproved relations, refusing an arrange marriage, leaving the family without permission, falling victim to rapeí[1].

Every men and women in India are to decide their partner and no one has right to stop them or harm them. So, in this Article Iím trying to address the situation in India and the support and service done by the Indian government to safeguard the victims.

A special Legislation (for honour killing) will certainly be a welcome effort as it will help in generating additional protection to the victims- Justice P. Sathasivam, on 29 June 2013

Main Objectives Of The Article

  • The purpose of the article is to explain why honour-based violence happens in India
  • The rate of honour killing in past years
  • The services provided by the government and NGOs.

Right To Live Is Violated In The Name Of Honour Killing

In the introduction of this article I mentioned linked situation why honour killing are happen those were also the reasons, but honour based violence are maximum related to the freedom of marriage. According to all India progressive womenís association (AIPWA) honour crimes can be defined as the violence against both men and women, in many cases the young couple life was destroyed by the community people just to label their caste. In this violence a woman leads to face tons of problems by her Family and the community, and more likely they are the victims of this Honour crimes.

Yes, the family members and community just violating her rights from deciding her future. The major reason of honour killing is due to the complex socio-cultural problems. The caste members do not accept the intercaste marriage because they believe that it would spoil the decorum of their caste or status of the family and this society in village treats the family in a disrespect full manner if such marriage happens. So the family and the community people practice this honour killing to restore the honour and respect.

Honour killing murders are often reported as suicides or as accidents this also to protect the reputation of the family and to save so called reputation the family is violating the right to live of the men and women. This act of shame violates the equality before the law everyone is equal in the eyes of the law, basically no matter whether they are rich or poor upper caste or lower caste everyone deserves a justice.

Inequality, discrimination, violating the right to freedom of expressing their opinion, it affects the personal liberty of the couples who did inter caste marriage. the family and community members taking all the basic rights of the couples. The khap panchayath plays a vital role in this honour crimes and people who engage in honour crimes believes that the khap panchayath serves justice which save guards their reputation and instant verdict is provided. What is khap panchayath, how they formed? why khap panchayath is unconstitutional?

Khap panchayath is formed by the same caste people it a group of ten to fifteen people who were believe themselves that they safe guards the caste and they label the reputation of the community its an unofficial and un recognized by the law because itís violates such article written in our constitution. There is no written law to support their verdict so they judgements are always one sided and there is an absence of the formal bodies as a panchayath smriti. So it leads to the ruthless administration. These panchayats ignore a personís basic rights the demerits of the khap panchayat shows how it violates the rights of the men and women but still many of the people who stigmatized their community supports and believes they serve justice.
the discrimination against victimís child is a sad part in this matter. The child of the victim faces lots of struggles in this society. And in some case the victimís family wanted to kill the child so that there will be no risk of losing reputation in the community. Its indirectly violates the rights of the child to live.

Honour based violence violates Article 14, 15(1) & (3) 19, 21, and 39(f) of the Indian Constitution.

According to a report on crime statistics for 2018 by the national crime records bureau of India there were 30 murders with motive records as honour killing in 2018, according to Supreme court ruling on honour crimes 288 cases of honour killing were registered between 2014 and 2016. As per report in 2015, as many as 251 people died in the name of honour killings, which is a whopping increase of 796% from 2014.

According Reuters (the news agency company) reports that evidence a Dalit organization has recorded 187 cases of caste-based killings in Tamil Nadu between 2012 and 2017. They also report that honour based killings are more common in northern Indian states such incidents were also registered in south. According to times of India more than 300 plus cases were recorded in India. The question running inside my mind is why there is no special law to stop this act of shame whether the justice is served for the victims? What all are the Penalties?

As I said in the introduction of this article there is no special law to stop this honour-based violence but people who engage in this wrong full act can be punished under the section299-304, 307, 308,120A and B, 107-116, 34 and 35 of the Indian Penal Code.

Support And Services Provided By Ngos And The Government

Dhanak of humanity is a non profit organization supporting inter faith and inter caste couples in India. The organization provides legal guidance and support facilitation of stays in governmental houses. They also help them in many ways such us safe houses, protection, financial support.

Some sources says that there is a free smartphone application called ĎKadhal Araní that was developed to help the couples who fearing about the honour based violence by connecting them to the network of volunteers who will put them in contact with the relevant authorities in Tamil Nadu.

The support and services are also done by the Kerala Government in December 2019 a call for a service to manage safe houses in each district for Inter-faith and inter- religion couples aiming to avoid honour killing and also the government is supporting the couples financially of Rs. 30000/- if their annual income is less than 1,00,000/- to get this benefit at least they have to lived together for a year. And there are also some safe houses provided by the Haryana state, but the safe houses lack space and have poor hygienic conditions even though there is government support is there to help but still victims are facing many issues from the society.

Conclusion
Even after 70 years of independence still many men and women are not independent to decide their future, honour based violence happens just because of Illiteracy and lack of awareness of rights to freedom and constitutional rights and even now people believe in the superiority of caste above life. Honour killing is the act of killing humanity, taking the life of their own son or daughter to label their prestige in the society and the community is a something awful. First of all, the parents and the community should understand the right to freedom of their son or daughter.

Many cases also highlight the need to tackle the menace of honour killing. In Nitish Katara murder case the court sentenced the accused for kidnapping, conspiracy and murder and described the crime as an Honour killing. They were sentenced to life imprisonment; they were also fined Rs. 1,60,000 each even though the prosecution asked for the death penalty.

References
  • https://blog.ipleaders.in/honour-killings-india-need-urgent-reforms-new-laws/
  • https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/honour-killings-more-than-300-cases-in-last-three-years/articleshow/65908947.cms
  • https://www.justice.gov/eoir/page/file/1290791/download#:~:text=NPR%2022%20Nov.-,2018).,%5B2019%5D%2C%20162).
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nitish_Katara_murder_case
  • Red handed 20 criminal cases that shook India
  • https://www.indiatoday.in/india/north/story/what-is-khap-panchayat
End-Notes:
  1. https://www.justice.gov/eoir/page/file/1290791

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