News Archives

Emergency Calls on Violence Against Women Spiked in Mexico in 2020

Reuters - Mexico City, Mexico, 1/26/2021

According to recently published data, emergency calls related to violence against women in Mexico rose more than 30% in 2020 as the COVID-19 lockdown kept families stuck at home. More than 260,000 emergency calls were made about violence against women compared to under 198,000 in 2019. The report also showed a decrease in the number of investigations opened in Mexico into some crimes against women in 2020. Wendy Figueroa, head of the National Network of Shelters, confirmed the increase in numbers but warned that closer analysis was needed. Surveys by national statistics agency (INEGI) revealed that two-thirds of women in Mexico have experienced some form of violence, with almost 44% suffering abuse from a partner.

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New Law to Prevent Domestic Violence Against Women: CM

Dawn - Peshawar, Pakistan, 1/25/2021

Chief Minister Mahmood Khan has described the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Domestic Violence against Women (Prevention and Protection) Bill a landmark legislation and said that it will prevent domestic violence against women. He said that it was an important achievement of the incumbent government and that they will be taking additional steps “to provide all kinds of protection to the vulnerable segments of society including women and children.” Laying out the details of the law, the chief minister said that violence against women could be punished with imprisonment for a minimum of one year and a maximum of five years, while economic, psychological and sexual pressure would also be defined as violence against women.

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Groping Without ‘Skin-to-Skin Contact’ Does Not Amount to Sexual Assault Under POCSO Act: Bombay HC

Scroll, India, 1/24/2021

The Bombay High Court has noted that groping a 12-year-old minor girl’s breasts without ‘skin-to-skin’ contact does not amount to sexual assault under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. The Nagpur bench of the court said that it would fall under the purview of Section 354 of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalises ‘outraging the modesty’ of a woman. A single bench of Justice Pushpa Ganediwala made the observations while modifying an order by a sessions court that held a 39-year-old man guilty of sexually assaulting the minor. During the hearing on January 19, 2021, the High Court questioned whether groping a minor’s breasts without ‘skin-to-skin’ contact would fall within the definition of ‘sexual assault’ under Section 7 of the POCSO Act.

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Privacy Fears as Indian City Lucknow Readies Facial Recognition to Spot Harassed Women

South China Morning Post, India, 1/23/2021

Digital rights experts recently warned that the plan to monitor women’s expressions with facial recognition technology in an attempt to prevent street harassment in the north Indian city Lucknow will lead to intrusive policing and privacy violations. Police Commissioner DK Thakur said that the police had identified around 200 hotspots that women visit and that they will set up five AI-based cameras which will be capable of sending an alert to the nearest police station. However, technology analysts and privacy experts are not sure of the benefits and believe that the technology could breach people’s privacy and lead to greater surveillance.

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Sort Data on Violence Against Disabled Girls, Women Separately: Rights Activists

Mint, India, 1/22/2021

More than 90 individuals, disability rights activists, and organisations have urged the Home Minister Amit Shah in a letter to ensure that the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) maintains separate data on violence against women and girls with disabilities. In the letter, disability rights groups and activists, including the National Platform for the Rights of the Disabled, National Association for the Blind and the All India Federation of the Deaf urged the Home Minister to pass necessary orders to ensure that the NCRB maintains disaggregated data which includes, but is not restricted to, sex, age, place of residence, relationship with perpetrator and disability in cases of violence and exploitation, including gender-based violence against women and girls with disabilities, and violence inflicted by intimate partners.

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