Wednesday, December 26, 2007
The Nepal Police arrested at least 22 people, including girls, from different hotels of Butwal Municipality in Rupandehi district, close to the Indian border state of Uttar Pradesh.
They were arrested by the authorities in raid at the three hotels and a restaurant in Butwal after receiving a tip-off, according to the police.
The arrested youths would face a case of public offence, the police said.
Prostitution is considered illegal in Nepal and the Himalayan nation does not have a red light area.
The police said they have intensified raids in the district to control the illegal activity.
Concerned over the deteriorating law and order situation in the country's Terai plains bordering India, the government has unveiled new security measures for Southern Nepal.
The porous Indo-Nepal border has often facilitated criminal activities, including prostitution and smuggling.
In recent months, the security forces of the two countries have increased vigil to check crimes, including abduction, extortion and other forms of illegal activities in the Terai region.
Pune, Dec 26: A case of an alleged rape of a 17-year old girl was registered against a film director Ravi Naidu and five others, including Marathi film and stage actor Ramesh Bhatkar.
According to Wonowri police with whom the minor's mother lodged a complaint last night, Naidu lured the girl with a promise of offering role in films and raped her at his farm house in last March.
She was taken to Bhatkar's residence in Kothrud area in August where the actor allegedly solicited sexual favours.
The girl was let off from the flat after she raised an alarm, the complaint said. Bhatkar has been booked under IPC 354, police added.
Naidu also took the girl to Hyderabad and Mumbai and kept her in confinement, the complaint added.
A detailed analysis by TOI on the pattern of crime in the last five years across 84 police stations in Mumbai has thrown up facts that should worry the administration. Mumbai registered 133 rapes in 2003. This figure rose to 163 last year. There have been 160 cases by the end of November this year, implying that the end-of-the-year figure may be slightly higher than last year's.
It is not only the rape figure that is worrying. As many has 16 break-ins have happened every day, in some part of the city or the other, till November this year. And both murders and robberies have occurred at the rate of more than one in two days.
But there is one fact that the administration can draw comfort from; the crime figures appear to be plateauing off and the trends indicate that the end-2007 figures will not be too worse than the 2006 figures.
There were 210 cases of extortion, which used to be a major headache for Mumbai Police, in 2005. This year, till end-November, there have been only 116 cases; this 11-month figure is similar to the 12-month figure of 137 in 2006.
Maharashtra deputy chief minister R R Patil felt that a slight increase in the percentage of criminal cases was bound to happen in any exponentially growing city like Mumbai.
"A 10% rise should be considered normal as the city is bursting at its seams and there is a huge influx of migrants into the city every day," Patil said.
Plenty of discussion has been generated on whether sex education is necessary in schools or not, and it appears as if the majority of state governments are against it. Well, this Kamasutra sex survey which was undertaken as recently as 2005 says that the majority of youth today acquire their knowledge about sex “primarily through ‘Self reading’, ‘Friends’ and ‘Blue films’ rather than through parents, qualified sex educators and professional help.”
And worse, as many as 26 per cent of the respondents admitted that they rarely or never use condoms. Their preferred use of contraception was “pills” or “partner’s sterilization.” In many cases then the onus of preventing pregnancy lies with the female.
These are the kind of statistics that our “moral police” (who are none other than hard line political parties) should look at. They have a constituency after all. They should know that the majority (75%) of the respondents felt that “formal sex education should be given in school,” and about half of them felt that sex education should also be provided by “a parent of the same sex.”
This survey was essentially an urban one, and the majority of the respondents belong to Delhi, Mumbai & Bangalore. These are people who are ostensibly more educated and I guess not the kind of group that political parties are interested in.
All these respondents were young, mostly in the age group of ‘18 – 30’. Approximately half were unmarried and were from nuclear families. About a quarter of the respondents earned between ‘Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 3 lakh’ per annum.
Some interesting statistics on attitudes towards pre-marital sex:
1. About a third of the respondents in the age group of ‘above 31 years’ had had pre – marital sex with their spouse.
2. 27 per cent of marrieds had had pre-marital sex with more than 5 individuals.
3. 77 percent of all respondents agreed that “Pre-marital sex causes Guilt/emotional disturbance, if one does not ultimately have the same life partner”.
4. 66 per cent of respondents agreed that ‘These days pre-marital sex is acceptable “
5. 29 per cent of respondents did not think that “films and TV encourages pre-marital sex.”
About Marriage, it was ironic that while most respondents believed in “trust and sexual integrity” as being essential in a marraige, a good 35 per cent of the marrieds admitted that were currently involved with someone else!
Clearly, we are not as prudish a society as we would like to imagine. Everything happens, but it only happens behind closed doors. That is perhaps why the moral police makes such a big deal about everything. It would be interesting to delve into their personal lives to see how “pure” a life they lead.
The woman’s statement — after she was found out by the husband’s younger brother — that she had actually been sold to a man named Satish for prostitution, was also found to be false.
The man got bail only after the National Human Rights Commission had instructed the Noida police to take speedy action in the case. Police though have not yet bothered to find out whose body they had handed to the bride’s parents to cremate. The man meanwhile continues to face dowry harassment charges.
It all began when taxi driver Rakesh Awana married Anita, daughter of Mahendra Singh of Bulandshahr, in June 1998. According to Awana’s lawyer, Ankur Nagar, "Anita mysteriously disappeared on December 24, 2005. A week later, her father filed a report at the Dankor police station alleging that she had been murdered by Rakesh. Rakesh’s brother, Mukesh, had found a woman’s body in village Sirsa, also in the Dankor police station’s jurisdiction."
Nagar said that despite his client, Rakesh, protesting that the body was much too small and too decomposed to be that of Anita’s, police arrested him for the murder of his wife.
Tripla, born in eastern India
Tripla was born in the jungles of eastern India. But she died hundreds of miles from home, in the scrubby fields around Delhi, murdered by her husband because she refused to have sex with his brother.
She was born into a penniless family. So when a man came looking for a wife and offered £170 for her, her parents accepted.
She never saw her home or her family again. Her husband took her to his village in Mewat district, an hour's drive from Delhi. There is a shortage of women in the area, because of the practice of female foeticide.
They lived together as husband and wife for six months. Then Ajmer ordered her to sleep with his brother, who could not afford a wife.
When Tripla refused, Ajmer dragged her to a field near the village and beheaded her with a sickle.
Tripla's story was uncovered by Rishi Kant, a women's rights campaigner. When he told her parents in Jharkhand what had happened, her mother wept. "But what could we do?" she asked him. "We are facing so much poverty we had no choice but to sell her." Her husband is now facing trial for murder. Hers is one case among thousands. Every week, in the villages of Mewat alone, Mr Kant rescues more women who have been bought as wives and face lives of abuse.
Monday, December 24, 2007
A bank in India is helping sex workers save their money for a brighter future.
The bank was started by a sex-worker collective in the heart of Mumbai's red light district.
More than 1,200 sex workers now hold accounts at the Sangini Women's Co-operative Society bank, which will soon introduce low-interest loans.