Archive

Reuters blog archive

from The Human Impact:

Gender injustice: When Indian judges get it wrong

An Indian judge who called pre-marital sex "immoral" and against "the tenets of every religion" has been criticised by activists who say his remarks highlight gender insensitivity within the judiciary and the challenges faced by victims of sex crimes in seeking justice.

Judge Virender Bhat, who presides over a fast-track court which hears cases of sexual offences, made the remarks after ruling in one case that there was insufficient evidence that a man had duped a woman into having sex with him by promising marriage.

According to the Indian Penal Code, a man who has sexual intercourse with a woman after obtaining her consent on the false promise of marriage is committing rape.

"In my opinion, every act of sexual intercourse between two adults on the assurance of promise of marriage does not become rape, if the assurance or promise is not fulfilled later on by the boy," the judge said.

from The Human Impact:

Why the India gang rape verdict doesn’t bring closure

In life she had one name. But in death she has many. Some call her "Nirbhaya"  meaning fearless in Hindi, others refer to her as "Amanat" meaning treasure or "Damini" meaning lightening.

Many in the Indian media just call her "India's Braveheart" or "India's daughter" - symbolising the fact that she could have been any one of us. Any woman or girl in this country, where the threat of abuse - verbal, physical or sexual - is horrifyingly real.

from The Human Impact:

How old is old enough to be jailed for gang rape and murder?

The crime was horrific, the case shocking, and the trial long. Yet when the much anticipated first verdict in the high-profile Delhi gang rape case was pronounced in India over the weekend, there was no jubilation, just outrage.

Found guilty of the gang rape and murder of a student on a bus in December, the teenager - one of six accused - was sentenced to three years in a juvenile home, sparking anger and debate over whether India is too soft on its young offenders. Four adult defendants are on trial in a separate fast-track court. One of the accused committed suicide in jail.

from The Human Impact:

Extreme measures to “protect” daughters in India

Gurpreet Singh is a determined man. But he is an even more concerned father.

The 32-year-old investment adviser is leaving India and migrating to Australia. There is nothing new in that -- tens of thousands of professional Indians emigrate every year.

Unlike most of them, Singh’s reason for leaving is not the pursuit of greater economic returns, but a search for something increasingly perceived by parents to be lacking in India -- security for their daughters.

from Alison Frankel:

Scalia: Judiciary suffers when private lawyers stay off the bench

If there's one theme that ran through U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's interview Monday with Reuters Editor-in-Chief Stephen Adler, it's that words matter. Time and time again, Scalia and Bryan Garner, the co-author with Scalia of the book Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Texts, endorsed originalism and textualism, doctrines that demand judges stick to interpreting the words in front of them rather than attempting to divine legislative intent or (heaven forbid!) imposing their own policy agendas. According to Garner and Scalia, textualism is a sure-footed guide, regardless of where it leads.

"A textualist will frequently end up with -- an uncomfortable result. With a result that feels bad," Garner said, according to a transcript of the interview, which he also participated in. "That's the funny thing. The judges who are not textualists will essentially always do what they consider to be the better policy. But textualists will frequently decide cases that they think, 'Wow, it's a shame I have to do this.'"

from India Insight:

Women culpable for domestic assault? Judges believe so

By Annie Banerji

The country that has a woman president, four women chief ministers and has generated the likes of internationally renowned actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and PepsiCo chief Indra Nooyi hasn’t scored too well when it comes to the condition of the fairer sex.

The Indian government released census data on Thursday that said every 14th girl child born in India dies before she can celebrate her fifth birthday. The March Census 2011 revealed a highly skewed gender ratio with the lowest level of child sex ratio (number of girls per 1,000 boys below five years of age) in the country’s history -- 914 from 927 in 2001.

from India Insight:

Has the judiciary been a let-down?

A view of the Supreme Court building is seen in New Delhi December 7, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur/FilesA former Chief Minister of Karnataka sparked off a controversy in the 1990s by comparing the country's legislative, executive, judiciary and the fourth estate to four pall-bearers of India's democracy.

Many would have disagreed with the cynicism the comments displayed, especially regarding the judiciary.

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Sentenced to death: On Pakistan’s minorities

aasia bibiEarlier this year I asked someone who had been a senior minister in the government of Pakistan why the country could not change laws which discriminated against minorities. I asked the question because more than 80 people from the minority Ahmadi sect had just been killed in two mosques in Lahore, which at the time served as a wake-up call of the dangers of growing religious intolerance in Pakistan.

His answer was unhesitating. You could not possibly do something like that in Pakistan.

from India Insight:

INTERVIEW – Supreme Court lawyer on Khushboo case

Pinky Anand, counsel for actress Khushboo in the Supreme Court, spoke to Reuters about the case and how the verdict would have a far-reaching impact.

from Funds Hub:

All pensions are equal, but some are more equal than others

Ever agreed with  George Orwell's  sarcastic vision of equality? If you are nodding,  you will not be surprised to hear that the same wide range of equality degrees applies to pensions.

Take public pension employees; some say the fact they are entitled to a pension equivalent to a percentage of their wages, no matter what markets/economic cycles are up to, makes them "pension aristocracy".  Some companies' executives share the same exalted fate but most UK workers are today part of the pension plebs, enrolled in defined contribution pension schemes, which pay out only what the markets have delivered.

  •