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26 Nov

The Crimes identified under the Special Laws (SLL)

The Crimes identified under the Special Laws (SLL)
Although all laws are not gender specific, the provisions of law affecting women significantly have been reviewed periodically and amendments carried out to keep pace with the emerging requirements. Some acts which have special provisions to safeguard women and their interests are:
The Employees State Insurance Act, 1948
Sexual Harassment (Sec. 509 IPC)
The Plantation Labour Act, 1951
The Hindu Succession Act, 1956 with amendment in 2005 (vii) Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956 (viii) The
Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1976 The Equal
Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 (Amended in 1995) (ix) Dowry
The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971
Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986
The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005
Remuneration Act, 1976
The Special Marriage Act, 1954
The Family Courts Act, 1954
The Hindu Marriage Act, 1955
The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006
Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act, 1987
Prohibition Act, 1961
The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 1983
The Factories (Amendment) Act, 1986
Again, there are several loopholes and gender biases in the existing laws. For example, the personal laws pertaining to marriage provides a provision for restitution of conjugal rights and this is equally available to the husband and wife. However, in most of the cases, it is used by the husband against the wife ignoring the fundamental rights of the latter.
On the one hand, women have been subjected to discriminatory traditional norms and values and gender biases and on the other, a vast number of them have remained unaware about the significant provisions of the laws. Hence, there is a great need to educate women about the legal provisions and to make specific provisions for free legal aid to women. One governmental report observes:
Legal aid programmes for women have to be developed which are not litigation oriented. These must consist of:
(i) Creating legal awareness amongst the people and especially women,
(ii) Holding local aid camps
(iii) Conducting para-legal training programmes for social workers and voluntary agencies and
(iv) Supporting public interest litigation, by which social workers can participate and carry forward the legal aid programmes for women.

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