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The portrayal of gender-based violence: Reel violence takes a toll on the real

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Violence and gender disparities have always been deeply ingrained in Indian society. India’s progress towards gender equality, measured by its rank on the Gender Development Index have always been deplorable, despite fairly rapid rates of economic growth. In the year 2020, when the entire world faced the wrath of COVID-19 which completely shook the human civilization. The pandemic not only disrupted the lives and economy of the nation but also acted as a catalyst by increasing the rate of violence in India. This sudden explosion of violence has become so prominent and alarming that it has even earned an epithet, “the shadow pandemic”.

The annual report of National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB)revealed the crime stats which showed how daunting the situation is as “The report, released claims that a case of rape is registered with the state police every two hours while crime against a child is reported every 90 minutes in Uttar Pradesh”. Not only Uttar Pradesh but other states are also fighting the similar battles as the crime rates surges 14% in India.

The constitution affirms that equality before the law and the equal protection of laws shall be offered too all. Similarly, there shall be no distinction towards any citizen on the account of sex and if required the state can make special legal provision for women and children. There are articles in our constitution which provide right to an adequate means of livelihood and equal pay for both men and women still Gender based violence prevails which casts doubt that even with such a strong system of rules and regulations what is still causing gender-based violence to strengthen its roots in India.

Gender Based Violence can be defined as violence directed against someone on the basis of their sex. This violence ismost commonly enacted by men against women and other helpless victims however men also can be the victims of gender-based violence. There are many forms of Gender based violence but among which Intimate Partner Violence is the most common type of violence against women in all societies.

IS MEDIA POWERING GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE?

Since the late 18th century Indian media has been active in India. Since then, there have been many laws and amendments made to regulate the performance of media as itcauses an enormous impact on the audience. Media has become a tool for altering public perceptions. The biopic ofhonorable prime minister Narendra Modi did not get released ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha election as there were many speculations relating to the film and how it can interrupt the voting process. If movies have the potential to exert such influence on people, its opinion on topics like female empowerment and female representation is likely to have an effect on people too.

The number of digital TV households in India has grown from124.71 million in 2016 to 191.65 million in 2021 with 624.0 million internet users in India in January 2021. These stats clearly show how televisions and Technological Convergenceare widely accessible by the masses along with that media isoften recognized as the “fourth pillar”, together with the legislative, executive and judicial pillar of government all these aspects clearly state that having some restrictions on the content displayed becomes obligatory. It has been long debated that women characters in movies are supplementary to their male counterparts and their lives are showed to orbit around men. While women-centric movies and strong female leads with a mind of their own have made it to the screen but cinemas like these are seldomly seen compared to the male centric ones. One of the test introduced by an American Cartoonist Alison Bechdel known as the Bechdel-Wallace test which acts as a litmus test for women representation in movies and has shown many negative results when tested here. The movies that were considered to be blockbusters of their respective years failed terribly in this test which shows how the film industry showcases minimal female representation in their movies and is also widely accepted by the audience as these movies make a huge cut compared to others.

“Pyar se de rahe hai, rakh lo, varna thappad maarke bhi de sakte hai.” – Dabangg, 2010. The dialogue of the decade which can be heard almost everywhere in any award show with the audience reacting to it with titters is something more bewildering. From the 20th Century to 21st, the sexism in Cinema writing has always been present

This how spine-chilling the situation is as not only this but many more movies include these types of dialogues and confab and some of them are the great hits from their time with a high number of gross revenue collection which clearly depicts lakhs of people spending their money and time to watch these movies with absurd dialogues. It’s a high-end time that representation of such words should be curtailed. It is inexcusable how these obnoxious and appalling scenes and dialogues manage to make it past the censor board. Indian cinema, since its beginning has normalised abuse, objectification of women through derogatory songs and fat shaming and continues to do so.

In a country where crimes and violence against women are at an all-time high, our films and television shows continue to preach that stalking or ill-treating a woman is okay and that consent is a myth. Still there are some rural areas in India where the practice of branding women as a witch still exists.On the other hand, people, particularly women, are accused of witchcraft and condemned, occasionally killed therefore movies and television shows who lay an overemphasis on the details of depicting women as witches only adds fuel to this issue as superstitions are usually attributed to lack of education. Furthermore, sexual violence is often treated with a pinch of humour and entertainment this how spine-chilling the situation is as the dialogues aforementioned are taken from some of the great hits from their time with a high number of gross revenue collection which clearly depicts lakhs of people spending their money and time to watch these movies with absurd dialogues. It’s a high-end time that representation of such words should be curtailed.

Imagine how perplexing it is for survivors to see traumatic experiences similar to their own as a punchline for a joke. Shows like ‘Crime Patrol’ & ‘Savdhaan India’ Make a Mockery of Sexual Violence. Shows like these have made anopulence out of turning these violence into entertainmentunder the garb of ‘awareness’ or ‘gender sensitisation’

The Indian filmmaking culture somehow still appears muddled towards establishing a universal view about projecting homosexual characters numerous of articles online discuss how times have changed and list down films that have a supposed good representation of individuals belonging to the LGBT community. But upon analysis them, one realisesthat not only have they got zero understanding of the depiction but the films are all having LGBT characters portrayed in negative, villain like roles. Anjali Gopalan, founder of the Naz Foundation and a petitioner against article 377 pointed towards a film. In an interview where she expresses how we do not see even the smallest bit of fair movies about homosexuals, based on a lesbian relationship reason being the ultimate frustration within the dominant-gender system after finding out that suddenly women do not need men. Even though article 377 is decriminalize India still has a long way to go and, filmmakers hold utmostresponsibility in being empathetic and rational while attempting to make films on the said theme a responsibledepiction is needed as portrayal of the gender-based violence in the various media causes violence in society.

FEMINEITY IDEALIZED AS DOMESTICITY

Movies and television series illustrates life from others point of view there is no self-reflection to it, usually people try to incorporate these reflections in their lives and try to perceive the society in that similar way. In the book of Betty Friedman “feminine mystique” where she argues how femineity has been associated with the concepts of maternity and housekeeping, content like these still circulate through media. Films and advertisements are publicized stereotyping women there are always shown playing two roles, upright or wicked.These polar opposites are often juxtaposed against each other to create sensationalizing effects to attract audiences. There are many movies whose story lines are believed to be female centric but they depict women not as a pivotal character of the story but a character adding to the male dominance of the society this clearly shows how the concept of feminisms is blurred. There is a dearth in media representing the real conditions of women and the inequality thriving in today’s patriarchal society. Women are shown to dress a certain way, look a certain way and behave in utmost womanlike way. Irrelevant beauty standards are offered through various advertisement These ideas create a certain image in the societies mind that led to strict gender roles. Social evils like Child marriage, Dowry system and domestic violence still triumphs in India therefore shows whose story line depicts around these social practices should be debarred as stated by the supreme court in the K. A. Abbas V. The Union of India & Anr “its effect particularly on children and adolescents is very great since their immaturity makes them more willingly suspend their disbelief than mature men and women. They also remember the action in the picture and try to emulate or/ imitate what they have seen.” The Constitution of India grants the freedom of speech through article 19(1)(a) to Press and Media as their natural right, it subjects to restriction and limitations as imposed by 19(2) which should be followed as unrestricted depictions of such storylines and violence will only create more problem in these existing social evils.

DETRIMENTAL MASCULINITY

Boys live under intensified pressure to display gender-appropriate behaviors according to the ideal male code set up in the society here also media plays a huge role as they depict men as tough and serious some advertisements and movies which shows that if a man uses certain products or dress in particular way or expresses gloomy emotions will make him less of a man as compared to others. Indian cinemas have represented men as the epitome of success, shown as having all desirable qualities-economically well off and socially successful all these romanticized depictions create an inflexible image of male hood. Domestic violence against men in India is not recognized by the law. The general perception of the society is that men cannot be on the receiving end of violence.

“In India A Woman Is Always Innocent Until Proven Guilty and A Man is Always Guilty Until Proven Innocent” This sentence was clearly depicted in the movie Section 375 which throws light on how men too faces false accusations the movie was appreciated for its theme and plot but at the same time raised several question upon the judicial system in providing justice As this movie depicts the scoffing of the law system that how the judgement to the case was hastily made by the court in the presence of public rage and media trials. Movies like these sets a bad example in the society of how the rights of men can’t be protected and even if he is innocent, he shall face the music.

Media being insensitive towards the victims has always been an issue media has always covered most of the cases of violence with and utmost disgrace and brutalize manner the names are often reveal of the survivor which is not only unethical but also illegal under Section 228A. The media seem to forget there could be people in their audience who might have experienced such exploitation and the imagery could lead to them relieving the trauma.

CONCLUSION AND SUGGESTIONS

Movies and serials are a reflection of society and affect the masses a lot. Ordinary people, continue to get influenced by movies and television, in return, they get influenced by us. It’s a closed-loop inside in which we have been stuck. Which makes it more important for the scriptwriter to provide the audience with such content that in any way don’t showcase any harm or pinpoints any gender, caste, race as this type of content may constraint individual and society as whole. Media has dual role to reinforce unequal as well as circulate new ideas.

Broadcasters may consider displaying a prominent videomessage before the beginning of any movie or television series that in include the same as “gender-based violence is punishable by law” and should explain the laws and punishes pertaining to it. While reporting GBV, media must avoid mentioning identifying details of the victim as these details in the report may contribute to victim shaming besides providing clues to wrongdoers.

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Legally Speaking

SUPREME COURT CRITICISES HIGH COURT: POSTING ANTICIPATORY BAIL PLEA AFTER TWO MONTHS CAN’T BE APPRECIATED

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The Supreme Court in the case Sanjay versus The State (NCT of Delhi) & ANR observed and stated that in the case where personal liberty is involved, the court is expected to pass orders at the earliest while taking into account the merits of the matter in one way or other. Further, the top court observed that posting of an application for anticipatory bail after a couple of months cannot be appreciated by the court.

The bench comprising of Justice C. T. Ravikumar and the Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia was hearing a June 2 SLP against the Delhi High Court in a petition filed under section 420, 467, 468, 471, 120-B, 34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 for seeking anticipatory bail in a 2022 FIR, a notice is issued. It was stated that the learned APP for the state is present and accepts the notice and seeks time to file status report. The High Court in the impugned order stated that Let the status report be filed by the state prior to the next date with an advance copy to the learned counsel for the petitioner. The matter is to be list on 31.08.2022.

It was noted by the bench comprising of Justice Ravikumar and the Justice Dhulia that in the captioned Special Leave Petition, the grievance of the petitioner is that the application for anticipatory bail moved by the petitioner, being Crl. M.A. No. 11480 of 2022 in Bail Application No. 1751 of 2022 without granting any interim protection, was posted to 31.08.2022. on 24.05.2022, the bail application was moved on.

However, the bench asserted that the bench is of the considered view that in a matter involving personal liberty, the Court is expected to to pass orders at the earliest while taking into account the merits of the matter in one way or other.

It was declared by the bench that at any rate posting an application for anticipatory bail after a couple of months cannot be appreciated by the court.

Further, the bench requested to the High Court to dispose off the application for anticipatory bail on its own merits and in accordance with law expeditiously, preferably within a period of three weeks after reopening of the Court. Adding to it, the bench stated that if the main application could not be disposed off, for any reason, within the stipulated time, relief sought for in the interlocutory and on and on its own merits, the application shall be considered.

While disposing of the SLP, the bench directed in its order that we grant interim protection from arrest to the petitioner herein, Till such time.

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IN THE CIRP OF BOMBAY RAYON FASHIONS LTD, NATIONAL COMPANY APPELLATE TRIBUNAL (NCLT) STAYS THE CONSTITUTION OF COC

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The National Company Appellate Tribunal (NCLT) in the case National Company Appellate Tribunal (NCLT), comprising of the bench of Justice M. Venugopal (Judicial Member) and the technical member, Shri Kanthi Narahari observed while adjudicating an appeal filed in Prashant Agarwal v Vikash Parasprampuria, has stayed in the Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP) the constitution of the Committee of Creditors (COC) of Bombay Rayon Fashions Ltd. on 15.06.2022, the order was passed.

FACTS OF THE CASE:

The Operational Creditor or the Respondent, Vikash Parasprampuria is the sole Proprietor of Chiranjilal Yarn Traders and the respondent had supplied goods to a public listed company i.e., Bombay Rayon Fashions Limited (“Corporate Debtor”). The Operational Creditor raised nine invoices which was accepted by the Corporate Debtor without any demur and it was noted that the dispute, protest and part payments were also made towards certain invoices.

The reminder letter was sent by the Operational Creditor when the Corporate Debtor failed to release balance payments letters followed by a Demand Notice under Section 8 of the IBC dated 05.11.2020, which was delivered to the Corporate Debtor but no response was received from the Corporate Debtor.

MUMBAI NCLT PROCEEDINGS

An application under section 9 of the Insolvency & Bankruptcy Code, 2016 was filled by the Operational Creditor before the NCLT Mumbai Bench, seeking to initiation of CIRP against the Corporate Debtor, for defaulting in payment of Rs.1,60,87,838/-, wherein the principal amount was Rs. 97,87,220/- and remaining was interest. 01.11.2020, was the default date.

the Operational Creditor placed reliance so as to justify the compliance of Rs. 1 Crore threshold for initiating CIRP of the NCLT judgement in the case Pavan Enterprises v. Gammon India, it was held in the case that interest is payable to the Operational of Financial Creditor then the debt will include interest, in terms of any agreement. However, by including the interest component the threshold of Rs. 1 Crore was being me and no reply has been filled by the Corporate Debtor.

NCLT DECISION:

An order dated 07.06.2022, the NCLT Mumbai Bench observed that the Corporate Debtor had time and again by its letter, invoices and by making part payment acknowledged its liability.

It was stated by the bench that the application under Section 9 was complete in all respects as required by law and there was a default in the payment of debt amount by the Corporate Debtor. The bench accepted the application and the CIRP was initiated against the Corporate Debtor, Mr. Santanu T Ray, Interim Resolution Professional was appointed.

NCLT PROCEEDINGS:

An application was filled by the appellant, Prashant Agarwal before the NCLT against the order dated 07.06.2022.

The settlement was proposed by the Respondent by submitting that if it would be satisfied if the Appellant pays the principal amount along with the CIRP cost towards settlement and on the settlement proposal, the appellant is yet to seek instructions.

Accordingly, the bench in the CIRP of the Corporate Debtor stayed the constitution of CoC and the CIRP process would otherwise continue.

The Appellant to accept or reject the settlement proposal of the Respondent, the bench listed the matter on 07.07.2022.

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ESTOPPEL CANNOT OVERRIDE LAW: SUPREME COURT ACCEPTS UNSUCCESSFUL CANDIDATES’ CHALLENGES TO SELECTION PROCESS HELD AGAINST REGULATIONS

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The Supreme Court in the case Krishna Rai (Dead) Through LRs versus The Benarus Hindu University & Others observed and held that the principle of estoppel or acquiescence would not be applied in a selection process when the principle of estoppel is held contrary to the relevant rules.

The bench comprising of Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice Vikram Nath observed and reiterated that that the procedure in the relevant service manual will prevail over the principle of estoppel and the principle of estoppel cannot override in the eye of law.

An appeal was considered by bench relating to the filling up of 14 posts in Class III (Junior Clerk) in the Benarus Hindu University by way of promotion. However, the notification inviting the applications from Class IV employees for promotion to Class III had not prescribed that interview will be conducted in addition to the typing test. It was also stated that the The service rules also did not mention interview for promotion to Class III. However, it finalized 14 candidates, the Board of Examiners conducted an interview as well.

Before the Allahabad High Court, some of the candidates challenged the selection process by some candidates, who did not get selected. The candidates alleging that through the manual did not prescribe an interview and the Board of Examiners conducted the interview by “changing the rules of the game”. The Selection process was set aside by the Single bench of the High Court by holding that a grave error was committed by preparing the merit list on the basis of the interview as well.

on appeal by the BHU, the division bench of the High Court set aside the judgement of the Single bench on the ground that the petitioners without protest after having participated in the interview, the petitioners are estopped from challenging the selection process after becoming unsuccessful. The appellants approached the Supreme Court challenging the order of division bench.

The Court noted that the Supreme Court held that the division bench fell in error by applying the principle of estoppel. the Manual duly approved by the Executive Council, According to para 6.4, all Class-IV employees who had put in five years’ service and passed matriculation examination or equivalent, those employees were eligible for the promotion to the post of Junior Clerk Grade.

the departmental written test of simple English, Hindi, and Arithmetic, but could not pass the typing test, was passed by the eligible candidates and still the candidates would be eligible for promotion.

It was observed by the Court that the Board on their own changed the criteria and by introducing an interview it made it purely merit based and the merit list was also prepared on the basis of marks awarded in the type test, the written test and interview.

The Top Court said that it is settled principle that the principle of estoppel cannot override the law and the manual duly approved by the Executive Council will prevail over any such principle of estoppel or acquiescence.

The Court remarked, while referring to the precents that If the law requires something to be done in a particular manner, there can be no estoppel against law, then it must be done in that particular manner, and if it is not done in that particular manner, then in the eye of the law, it would have no existence.

It was stated that the case laws relied upon by the Division bench had no application in the facts of the present case as none of those judgments laid down states that the principle of estoppel would be above in the eye of law.

Accordingly, The judgement of the Single bench was restored and the appeal was allowed, the judgement of the division bench was set aside.

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PRIMARY TEACHER RECRUITMENT SCAM: CALCUTTA HIGH COURT ORDERS REMOVAL OF CHAIRMAN OF WB BOARD OF PRIMARY EDUCATION

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On Monday, the Calcutta High Court removed Trinamool MLA Manik Bhattacharya from the post of Chairman of the Board of Primary Education, in connection with the alleging irregularities in the recruitment of the teachers in the State government-sponsored and aided primary schools.

Earlier, the bench comprising of Justice Abhijit Gangopadhyay observed and ordered that a court-monitored probe by a special investigation team of the CBI into the alleged illegal appointments of at least 269 primary teachers.

It was contended that such a direction was passed on the basis of the recommendation put forward by the CBI additional director Upendranath Biswas.

The additional director Upendranath Biswas headed the probe into the Bihar fodder scam that led to the conviction of that state’s former chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav.

From 2011 to 2016, A minister in the first Mamata Banerjee government. additional director Upendranath Biswas had named one Chandan Mondal of Bagda, North 24 Parganas for allegedly giving jobs of primary school teachers in lieu of money.

The Court ordered that the Secretary of the Board, Ratna Chakraborty Bagchi, would remain in the charge till the new appointment is made to the Chairman of the Board. Thereafter, it was intstructed to Bhattacharya to appear in person before the court for further investigation.

It was further ordered by Justice Gangopadhyay that the CBI Joint Director N. Venugopal shall head the SIT and supervise the whole investigation as the counsel appearing for the Court about the constitution of the SIT in accordance with his earlier order.

Six SIT members name have been submitted by the CBI, who will be investigating the cases under the supervision of its anti-corruption branch’s superintendent of police, and its joint director.

Appearing for the petitioner, senior counsel Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya had requested requested CBI counsel Billwadal Bhattacharyya to reconsider the name of K.C. Risinamol for replacing her by some other officer of similar rank, during the course of proceedings.

Accordingly, It was stated that the Counsel for the CBI had averred that he would talk to senior counsel Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya as well as his client in this regard and apprise the Court about the appropriate decision taken in this regard.

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‘PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT CANNOT BE OBTAINED BY PAYING BRIBE’: MADRAS HC REJECTS PETITION OF ACCUSED FOR INTERIM CUSTODY OF RS 10 LAKH SEIZED DURING JOB RACKET CASE PROBE

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The Madras High Court in the case K.Sadagopan v. State Rep.by, Inspector of Police and ors observed and dismissed a petition seeking to provide an interim custody of Rs 10 lakh, which is seized in a job racketing case. The Madras High Court bench comprising of Justice D Bharatha Chakravarthy expressed his displeasure at the way people of how they were willing to pay huge amount of money for getting a job. The bench enunciated those public appointments were made through a selection procedure and it cannot be obtained by paying bribes. The bench further highlighted that such persons does not realise that it took years of work to earn such salaries and gave no though to the plight of persons who scored more marks than them.

The Court in its order stated:

Through all the concerns it is to be understood that the public appointments is only done through selection process and no job can be obtained by giving bribe. But the present case, it is it is seen that the petitioner with his full knowledge has given a huge amount of Rs.78 Lakhs for the purpose of securing job under Class -I and without any thought about that how many years a person has to work and earn that much of salary and the accused without any guilt as to what will happen to the person, who has scored much more marks. However, the court inclined to pass any order expediting the trial and hence, the Court concluded that the petition is liable to be dismissed.

Facts of the Case:

The petitioner was a victim of Job racketing and the police in the course of investigation has seized some amounts and had frozen the accounts of the accused. An application was filled by the petitioner under section 451 and section 457 for a return of Rs. 10 lakh as interim custody of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. Therefore, the application was rejected by the Magistrate who held that the investigation was at the nascent stage and that the matter could be decided only during trial. However, the petitioner approached the high court seeking to quash this impugned order and to direct interim custody of Rs. 10 lakhs, the return of money in the account of the accused.

The Court remarked while dismissing the petition that the petitioner appeared to be a greedy person who paid a sum of Rs.78 lakh for getting a Class-I job. Furthermore, the petitioner approached the court for the return of money without even waiting for the trial to be completed as only then a clear finding could be arrived at.

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Plea in Supreme Court to direct Centre to reconsider Agnipath recruitment scheme for Armed forces

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In the case Harsh Ajay Singh v Union of India, a writ petition is filed before the Supreme Court seeking issuance of directions to the Centre to reconsider its “Agnipath” recruitment scheme for armed forces.

The Writ petition is filled by Advocate Harsh Singh, It is stated in the writ petition that the announcement of scheme had caused nation-wide protest in Haryana, Uttarakhand, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and various other states due to the short- term duration of the scheme in the Indian Army for Four years coupled with future uncertainties of the trained “Agniveers”.

It was further contended by Advocate Harsh Singh in his petition that the Agniveers, would not be matured so as to retain self-discipline with the realization to become a better version of himself or herself both professionally as also personally, on completion of the four-year tenure in the prime of their youth.

Against the Scheme backdrop, Advocate Harsh Singh has also sought for implementation of scheme from June 24, 2022.

It was contended in the petition filled that there is a great possibility for the Agniveers trained under the scheme to go stray. The petition filled by Advocate Kumud Lata Das stated that making up the fighting sinews of its armed forces, the nation should never compromise with the army personnel’s. They shouldn’t be looked upon as a burden to the exchequer, but as rough diamonds, to be cut and polished to their maximum capabilities and then deployed in the defence of the nation

The petitioner has also served the petition to the Union, as a result of caveat filed by the Centre.

A plea has already been filled in the Supreme Court challenging the Centre’s “Agnipath” recruitment scheme for armed forces.

It may be noted that another Public Interest Litigation has been filled in the Supreme Court for setting up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to enquire into the mass violence and the damage to the public properties which include that of railways, during the widespread protests against the Centre’s “Agnipath” recruitment scheme.

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