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UP Govt Announces Zero Tolerance Policy For Crimes Against Women. We Need This To Happen Everywhere!

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Let’s be fair, our country doesn’t take women’s safety seriously. We have heinous crimes against women happening in India every day and while we talk about some of them, most of them go unreported. But, things have altered as awareness about these crimes has come about. Recently, the Uttar Pradesh government announced that no anticipatory bail will be given to criminals who have committed severe crimes against women. We need this policy everywhere.

The Uttar Pradesh Assembly, led by Yogi Adityanath, has adopted a “zero tolerance” policy regarding crime against women and children. The Code of Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Bill 2022, which prohibits anticipatory bail for those accused of crimes against women and children, was enacted by the state assembly. The Bill, tabled in the UP Assembly on the initiative of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, banned anticipatory bail for those guilty of grave crimes against women. The provisions of the CrPC are up for amendment thanks to the bill.

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The UP Assembly addressed the bill’s introduction when it was being discussed how to ensure women’s empowerment. The bill will reportedly be revised to include a clause prohibiting anticipatory bail for those charged with grave crimes against women like rape, gang rape, and sexual misconduct. Awaiting bail will not be granted to suspects arrested under the POCSO Act either. The POCSO Act and Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure are the two things that the amendment bill aims to amend. This means that if an individual is arrested for a major crime against a woman, they will not be eligible for anticipatory bail.

The UP government stated that the amendment bill was being proposed in accordance with its zero-tolerance policy for crimes against women and children. According to the bill, “it has been decided to amend section 438 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 in accordance with zero tolerance policy towards crimes against women and children, to ensure quick collection of proof in sexual offences, to prevent such evidence from being destroyed, to minimise the possibility of destruction of evidence, and to restrain the accused from causing fear and coercion to the victim/witnesses.” The change may prove to be a turning point in preventing intimidation of witnesses and victims as well as manipulation of the evidence by the accused.

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While this might not completely make a dent in women’s conditions in India, it is still a step towards a positive change. I am just bewildered that anticipatory bail for those accused of such horrendous crimes against women. Luckily, this has been changed and hopefully, it will come about everywhere. 

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