THE ISSUE: Punishment for false accusations of dowry, domestic violence, rape and sexual harassment, when proven to have been made with malice aforethought, should be as harsh as that for the crimes themselves.
In the 21st century, society has started demanding equal attention for both sexes. Women are trying to establish their individual identities. That is why bonafide cases of dowry, domestic violence, rape or sexual harassment are correctly dealt with harshly. But the sad fact that we must all accept is that in todayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s world, many women are willing to make false accusations for material or other benefits. Punishment for these false accusations should be the same as that meted out to those who are really guilty of such acts. A tooth for a tooth, an eye for an eye is the answer. She who defames a man and harms his character with a false accusation makes him the victim.
It is common knowledge that women lie too in addition to being equally if not more abusive than men. Domestic violence, rape and sexual and dowry harassment are strong words that could change someoneÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s life for ever Ã¢â‚¬â€œ both the victimÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s as well as the accusedÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s. Indeed, sexual crimes deserve the harshest punishment. But, there is an unfortunate trend in contemporary society of women playing the domestic violence, rape and sexual or dowry harassment card. Self-seeking women, some under the garb of radical feminism, have resulted in a sharp rise in men being falsely accused. The activities of these groups include creating false statistics. They lie about domestic violence, rape, dowry and sexual harassment. The centrepiece of their argument is their fictitious concept of male privilege. They ignore the fact that some women do lie and some women promote violence against men. Sometimes it is seen that charges appear to have been arbitrarily brought and to have been based on malicious accusation. If the charge fails, then the woman who has brought it can Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and must Ã¢â‚¬â€œ be punished. The courts should be empowered to punish harshly those who are proven to have fabricated allegations and made malicious, false accusations.
Defamation is worse than……..Nobody heeds to the views of a man who is not a real culprit but has been targeted by a woman perhaps fabricating a lie and making a sensitive complaint. Many line up to take up the cudgels on behalf of the false accusers. And even if a man is proven to be innocent, heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s victimised by those around him. Strong punishment for men and women who fabricate charges of rape and sexual harassment.
Punish the culprits! Culprits Ã¢â‚¬â€œ whatever be their crime Ã¢â‚¬â€œ must be made to pay the harshest penalty for their wrongs. And punishment for those accusing others falsely should be as harsh as those handed out for the crimes themselves if society has to function decently and men and women live in honour.
Attacks on dignity should also be made unpardonable. Given the narrow-minded attitude of Indians, false charges of domestic violence, rape and dowry or sexual harassment becomes life-long stigma. Of late, it has become too common to rope in these heinous charges to settle professional, personal or political scores with husbands, relatives and colleagues, or a means employed by the female employee to teach a lesson to her boss who didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t pay heed to her unwanted demands. Again in the cases where the girl elopes with her lover and returns back the girlÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s family level this charge to seek revenge. Section 211 which deal with the Ã¢â‚¬Ëœfalse charge of offence made with intent to injureÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ punishes the offender implicated under this section with imprisonment extending up to seven years. However, cases involving false charges show no sign of abating so much so that Delhi High Court had to remark that dowry-related provisions are amongst the most misused. In the same class lies the misuse of the SC/ST Act which has been cynically misused by vested interests to strike terror among political rivals. In the West, speedy justice comes to the rescue of a victim of false and malicious accusations Ã¢â‚¬â€œ just as the real perpetrators of sexual crimes are not spared Ã¢â‚¬â€œ besides the mature response of those around him. In India, the legal system functions at a snailÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s pace and reduces the victim to a helplessness. Even after being proven innocent, our so-called custodians of society make life hellish for him.
Please donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t spare vicious slander. It is only apt that rape and any form of sexual harassment deserves severe punishment. This would be a lesson Ã¢â‚¬â€œ both for lecherous men and society at large. But what if an innocent individual becomes a victim of false accusations and charges? Yes, that too deserves severe punishment. Here the case is equally sensitive as that of crimes like rape and molestation. This is actually defaming a person intentionally Ã¢â‚¬â€œ which is both morally and legally wrong. And such accusations made with malice aforethought can lead to acute psychological problems Ã¢â‚¬â€œ just like those suffered by a rape victim. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s time that we Ã¢â‚¬â€œ as a people Ã¢â‚¬â€œ delve deep into such cases before giving a final verdict.
To frame a person is a sin and is the most heinous way of seeking vengeance. Malice and contempt prove to be so potent that a person forgoes the trauma and shame inflicted on his innocent person. Such a preposterous act deserves the same punishment as that meted out to those found guilty of the crime itself.
Let the law prevail. The issue hinges on the basic principle of of law that accusations of serious charges of domes tic violence, rape, dowry and sexual harassment against the persons complained against, when proved beyond all reasonable doubt, should be visited with the maximum penalty as enshrined in the panel provisions of the law. At the same time, it is also enjoyed under the relevant sections of the criminal procedure code that false, frivolous and vexatious complaints of such nature should be met with dire consequences of punishments on the persons making such complaints. Besides, there is the celebrated ruling of the Supreme Court that the charge of rape and sexual harassment is always easy to make but difficult to rebut, and as such the assessment of evidence, particularly that of the victim woman, has to be made with caution and prudence by the judge and the presiding officer of the Court. There is always, as the apex court has repeatedly cautioned, the possibility of malice, afterthought and even previous animus creeping into the testimony of the prosecution.
If the evidence of the alleged victim woman is vitiated by malice and animus against the accused, the basis of the trial in such cases which hinged on the quality of her testimony in material particulars stands shaken as it does not inspire confidence. The accused shall, hence, not only be acquitted of the charge of such vexatious and frivolous complaint but prosecution ought to be initiated against such malicious complainant under the relevant section of the law. It is not uncommon that people even in high positions have been victimised maliciously by women to gain some undue advantage. Law should take its own course in dealing with such malicious complainants, letting consequences of harsh punishment, as enjoined, to visit upon the accuser.
Meet the ends of justice.
No doubt, domestic violence, rape, dowry and sexual harassment is a heinous offence and it is an unpardonable offence against humanity and punishment should be meted out to the offender. Unfortunately, many real offenders very often go scot free, and this surely not good. But there are instances in which a man is falsely implicated accused of domestic violence, rape, dowry and sexual harassment. Possibly because of a personal grudge or monetary gains, a crafty woman may implicate a man in a domestic violence, rape and dowry or sexual harassment case. Our judicial system must be competent and impartial enough to distinguish between a real charge and a trumped up charge. If it is proved that the charge is false, then the complainant must be given a severe punishment to meet the ends of justice.
Originally posted 2007-11-14 13:22:00.