“Human rights are women’s rights and women’s rights are human rights, once and for all” These words of Hillary Clinton are a reminder to the world that woman is a human too. But, Is the world a better and safer place for them? No, even in the 21st century they are still the bird of a cage with wings given to fly free but bound within the orthodox walls of society.
To be able to break those barriers, every woman must know their rights. On this International Women’s Day, we are making a small effort to make our female readers aware of their legal rights given by the Indian constitution.
Right To Anonymity
Our name is our identity but it turns into a ground for ostracism in the case of a rape victim. Thus, to protect the identity and such social victimization against women Indian constitution has given the right to anonymity to a woman.
She can file a complaint against sexual assault without revealing her name according to section 228 (A) of the Indian Penal Code. And nobody has the right to reveal their name in public, not even the media or police.
Right To Life
“Beti hai to kal hai” but it took decades to understand these lines. Unfortunately, female foeticide still exists in the country but the Indian Constitution has given more power to women to prevent the sex determination of child by any of their family members or doctor.
The PCPNDT Act, 1994 i.e. Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act prohibits sex selection and regulates the techniques used during prenatal diagnosis.
Also Read: International Day Of Women And Girls In Science: Indian Women Scientists Reaching Milestones
Right To Zero FIR
According to the Zero FIR ruling by Supreme Court, a woman is allowed to lodge a complain of a crime against her in any police station irrespective of the location. This also implies that no police officer can refuse to file a complaint just because the area doesn’t come under their radar.
And in case, she cannot physically lodge an FIR then the right to file a virtual complaint is also given to them. She can directly send a mail to Deputy Commissioner.
“Justice Can Be Delayed Not Denied” in other words, there is no time limit to filing an FIR. Even if the incident took long ago, she has the freedom and right to file an FIR and no police offer can refuse to do so.
Free Legal Aid
Many women don’t know about the right to free legal aid due to which they suffer while getting their statement recorded in a police station. Their words are either misquoted or not taken seriously. Thus, a woman must get her statement record in the presence of a lawyer.
According to the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 Section 12 (c) gives a woman the right to free legal aid whereby she doesn’t have to pay for a lawyer irrespective of her financial status.
Right Against Domestic Violence
Domestic Violence whether verbal, sexual, emotional, mental or any other form against a woman is a punishable and non-bailable offense. The Domestic Violence Act, 2005 gives protection to a woman against all kinds of abuse by her husband, parents, brothers, relatives, or live-in partner. She can register a complaint against domestic violence under section 498A.
These were the top 5 legal rights every woman should know and use in case her dignity, identity, and decency is hurt.