Expert Talk on “Women Rights & Laws”

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MES’s Pillai College of Education and Research Chembur, in association with Soroptmists International Bombay Chembur and Stree Mukti Sanghatana organised an Expert Talk on the topic “Women Rights & Laws” on the occasion of International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women on Saturday, 26th November, 2022.

The guest speaker for the event was Advocate Ujwala Kadrekar and after being introduced to all present and felicitated by the Principal Dr. Reni Francis, Ms. Ujwala began her interactive session.

She spoke about how people need to be aware of their fundamental rights and asked students to list examples of violence against men and women. She pointed out how society still tends to perceive women as inferior, even though fundamental rights are enjoyed by all citizens equally, regardless of gender.

She discussed how pain is self-chosen and how people find it difficult to stand up for themselves. She asked students to list characteristics of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ women and how these labels have been decided by society and how no law exists that supports these sexist and stereotypical beliefs.

She deliberated on the details of the provisions listed in the Domestic Violence Act, 2005 and the Protection of Children against Sexual Offences Act, 2012. She elaborated on the four types of violence (physical, emotional, economic and sexual) and gave real-life examples of various cases of violence against women and girls.

Ms. Ujjwala also introduced new terms like sexual harassment, disrobing, voyeurism and stalking (these acts had previously not been officially recognized) She emphasized on how cognizable offences need a FIR to be filed, before the police can get involved.

She then proceeded to deliberate on the five relief measures provided to victims of domestic violence: protection order, residence order, monetary relief, custody of children and compensation. She urged students to contact helplines and reach out to those in positions of authority who can help, instead of staying silent.

The talk concluded with a Question & Answer session where Ms. Ujwala addressed several concerns of the students.