Soon, sexual harassment of women, which includes a suggestive gesture or even using obscene language (commonly referred to as eve-teasing) might lead to three years in jail. Further, it will be a non-bailable offence, which means an offender cannot escape jail by pledging a fine.
Likewise, more heinous crimes like physical assault on women will attract a seven-year prison term and will also be non-bailable. Taking serious note of the increasing crime rate against women, the state government has decided to amend Sections 509 and 354 of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 (CrPC) which deal with these offences.
The proposed amendment is likely to come up at the state cabinet meeting on Wednesday, following which it will be tabled at the legislature and then sent to the Central government.
“If all goes well, the procedure might take two to three months after the amendment gets a go-ahead from the legislative session in December,” said Medha Gadgil, principal secretary, home department. So if there are no procedural hurdles, the state will be able to implement the new amendments by March 2012.