Prosecution rightly invoked Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act against accused: Madras HC

Madras HC : Encroachment cases are on rise spending most of the Court’s valuable time on it

In the case, the prosecution was right in registering the case under Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 2002 against the Accused, as de-facto Complainant/Victim (Transgender) named Neka views herself as a woman is observed by the Tamil Nadu High Court.

The plea (filed under S. 482 Cr.PC) of the Petitioner-Accused booked under Sections 294(b) and 506(i) of I.P.C. and Section 4 of Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 2002 heard by the bench of Justice  G.R Swaminathan.

The petitioner-accused is the owner of the lodge and Respondent (Neka) stayed in one of the rooms in the lodge. On the occurrence date, the petitioner-accused barged into her room and when was questioned, he abused her in the filthy language. The de-facto complaint was filed by Neka.

The counsel for petitioner stated that the Respondent being Transgender and it was not open to prosecution to invoke the provisions of Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 2002.

The Supreme Court, in the case of National Legal Services Authority vs. Union of India (2014) 5 SCC 483, had held “that it is entirely for the transgender person to self-identify her gender and that this self-determination cannot be questioned by others.”

The Court observed in this case,

“In the case of hand, the defacto complainant/Neka views herself as a woman. Therefore, the prosecution rightly accepted the said self-identification and registered the case under the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 2002. Therefore, I find no merit in the contention of the petitioner’s counsel that invocation of Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 2002, is not maintainable.”

Thus, the Court dismissed the Criminal original petition.

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“An Investment in Knowledge pays the best interest”. I Ms. Sakshi Patil currently pursuing Bachelors of Law (LLB) from Pune University ,and I believe that Knowledge is a commodity to share and it should be not remain the monopoly of selected few. Studying Law helps me understand how society is govern and how law acts as medicine to heal the society. Keeping positive and open minded approach in every aspect of life is the aim and I hope to learn with every opportunity and can help to those in need and create awareness among people about law and its importance. As quoted by Henry Ward Beecher, ”A Law is valuable not because it is a law ,but because there is right in it.”