Constitutional Rights and Provisions for Women in India

11 Apr 2021

Curtain Hug

It is an arbitrary thought that women in Indian society have been victims of intolerance and social injustice in terms of basic human necessities to property inheritance matters. Even when the Indian Constitution provides for several benefits for women, the status of women in our country is not as desired. The fact behind this status of women is the lack of awareness of these rights is what makes women not stand for themselves and their right to equal opportunities.

It is a felt ought to eradicate violence and discrimination against women through the source of well-planned legal awareness programs which highlight.

Constitutional Provisions
- Article 14 Right to Equality assured that the state shall not contravene any person who is man or woman, equity before the law, or equal assurance.
- Article 15 (1) & (3) prevents discernment based on sex and empower the state for making any special provision for women and children.
- Article 16 (2) emphasizes the equality of opportunities in a matter of public employment and bars any discrimination against women concerning any employment.
- Article 19 stores for the Right to freedom which entitles women and men the freedom of speech and expression. But unfortunately, it is not the case in many households in our country, especially for women.
- Article 21 encourages the protection of life and personal liberty and states that no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty. Unlike the law, the death rate of girls in our country is alarming which is sort of evidence from the sex ratio of the many Indian states.
- Article 23 prohibits human trafficking and forced labour. But when we refer to the numberless cases of women abduction we are obliged to wonder about the true implementation of these rights.
Directive Principles of State Policy:
- Article 38 states to secure a social order for the welfare of the people to remove any disparities and minimize inequalities in income amongst citizens.
- Article 39 (1) ensures that men and women equally have the right to an adequate means of livelihood.
- Article 39 (4) enforces the fact that there is equal pay for equal work for men and women.
- Article 41 calls for the right to work, education and public assistance in certain cases, directing the state to make effective provisions for securing these basic rights to all irrespective of their caste and sex.
- Article 42 legislates to provide and ensure just and humane conditions of work and maternity relief for women.
- Article 44 endeavours the state for uniform civil code for the citizens to secure them be it men or women in order to respect all communities and philosophies.
- Article 47 ensures the state with the duty to boost the extent of nutrition and standard of living to enhance public health.

Fundamental Duties
Just as the rights, the constitution also states the duties of being a citizen. so as to possess a balance of safety and prosperity of the country, its citizens should remember their duties towards the country and will sincerely put in practice an equivalent.

Article 51 (A) e declares that it's the duty of each citizen of India to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of girls. additionally, those Article 243D(3) & 243D(4) ensure not but 1/3 of the entire seats to be filled by direct election in every Panchayat to be reserved for ladies and 1/3 of the entire number of offices of Chairpersons within the Panchayats at each level to be reserved for ladies. Similarly, Article 243 T (3) ensures an equivalent at Municipality.

Legal Provisions For Women In India
Even though there are well-stated constitutional provisions for women, there was a felt essential for providing certain arrangements or law s beforehand to further strengthen the interest and safety of women in our country. These provisions intent to counter social discrimination and different forms of violence and atrocities faced by women as victims.
These provisions are broadly classified as:
∙ Crimes under The Indian Penal Code (IPC)
∙ Crimes under The Special Law s (SLL)

A list of these crimes identified under the two categories is as follows:
Under IPC:
➢ Rape ( Sec 376 IPC)
➢ Kidnapping and Abduction for various purposes ( Sec 363- 373)
➢ Torture, both mental and physical (Sec 498-A)
➢ Molestation(Sec354)
➢ Sexual Harassment (Sec 509)
➢ Importation of girls (up to 21 years of age)

Under the second category of Special Laws the crimes identified are:
➢ The Employees State Insurance Act, 1948
➢ The Plantation Labour Act, 1951
➢ The Family Courts Act, 1954
➢ TheSpecialMarriageAct,1954
➢ The Hindu Marriage Act, 1955
➢ Equal Remuneration Act 1976
➢ Immortal Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956
➢ Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 (1995)
➢ Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act 1971
➢ The Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1976
➢ Equal Remuneration Act 1976
➢ The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 1986
➢ Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986
➢ Commission of Sati(Prevention) Act, 1987
➢ Pre-conception & Pre- Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Regulation & Prevention of Misuse ) Act, 1994
➢ Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006
➢ Hindu Succession Act, 1956 with an amendment in 2005