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This article deals with ‘ Honour Killing (UPSC) .’ This is part of our series on ‘Society’ which is important pillar of GS-1 syllabus . For more articles , you can click here .
According to Britannica , Honour Killing is the murder of a woman or girl by male family members. The killers justify their actions by claiming that the victim has brought dishonour upon the family name .
Problem of Honour killing is quite complex & reasons vary in different areas.
- Feudal Mindset : woman marrying outside her community brings dishonour to the family and it is better to kill them and set example for others .
- Strike against Dalit Assertion especially when women is from OBC caste & boy from Dalit caste .
- Inter religious marriages : Politicisation of matter especially in UP and ‘Love Jihad’ campaign by Hindutva ultra right wing.
- Same Gotra Issue in Haryana : In Haryana, marriages between couples belonging to the same gotra are not recognised leading to incidents of honour killing.
- Law Commission of India observed that one of the reasons of honour killing is change in economic status of women and taking a stand against the male-dominated culture.
Law regarding this
But, inspite of the increase in the number of crimes in the name of honour there is
- no definition of the crime
- no protections legally afforded to couple
Special law like Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe Prevention of Atrocities Act could render some justice to the victims of honour killings.
Judgements wrt Honour Killing
1 . Shakti Vahini Case (2018)
- NGO Shakti Vahini filed PIL in Supreme Court.
- Supreme Court gave various
guidelines to end honour killings like
- State Government should identify districts where honour killing happened in last 5 years .
- Khaps should not act as they are conscience-keepers .
- Police should help couples .
- Safe Houses for couples (1 month to 1 year) .
- Fast Track Courts should be made to decide case within 6 months .
Earlier Judgements regarding Honour Killings
2. Supreme Court Judgement on Khap Panchayats (2011)
In 2011, Supreme Court termed
- Khaps were termed as “kangaroo courts” .
- They were declared them illegal .
- Court wanted them to be stamped out ruthlessly.
3. Lata Singh v. State of U.P.
- Inter-caste marriages are in fact in the national interest as they will result in destroying the caste system.
4. Bhagwan Das v. Delhi (2011)
- Supreme Court deemed honour killings in the “rarest of rare” category of crimes that deserve the death penalty.