Archaic laws can’t protect you from stalkers | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Archaic laws can’t protect you from stalkers

delhi Updated: Mar 10, 2011 23:59 IST
Karan Choudhury
Karan Choudhury
Hindustan Times
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If a person is stalking you, all that the police can do under the law is hold your stalker in a jail cell for 24 hours. India, even though it had cases in the past where stalkers later graduated to murderers and rapists, has no anti-stalking laws.

While countries such as the United States, and even Canada, formulated such laws decades ago, India is to still catch up.

In these countries, a person is first warned and later issued a ‘restraining order’ that prevents the stalker to be within a specified radius of the victim.

If there were laws in place in India, the death of 20-year-old Radhika Tanwar, who was allegedly killed by her stalker, could have been prevented.

According to Delhi Police, they have an Anti-Stalking Cell to help women who are being stalked. The police said that if a woman has been a victim of stalking for a long period of time they could call the anti-stalking cell who would direct the local police station to take action.

“There are two ways of dealing with it. We sometimes call the stalker and his family members and tell them about his doings. Otherwise we can book him under section 107 and 151 of CrPC and hold him in custody," said a senior police officer requesting anonymity.

The police officer said the stalker could also be made to sign a bail bond, and if he continues to harass the woman, his bail can be revoked and he could be sent to jail.

In other countries

Australia: Every Australian state enacted laws prohibiting stalking during the 1990s. Queensland was the first state to do so in 1994. The laws vary slightly from state to state, with Queensland’s laws having the broadest scope

Canada: Section 264 of the Criminal Code of Canada addresses acts which are termed stalking in many other jurisdictions. A stalker can be sent to prison for up to 10 years.