On Wednesday the High Court had upheld the trial court’s order of life sentence to the three convicts in Katara’s murder case and labeled it a case of ‘Honour Killing’. While announcing the judgement Justice Gita Mittal also called for a serious examination as to why such murders are not categorized as a separate offense in the penal code.
It has suggested that both khap panchayats who sanction a range of violent actions in these cases and individuals including family members who abuse and harass and subject couples to a series of coercive and brutal acts should be punished. The draft law outlines the various kinds of crimes which are common in these cases including social and economic sanction of the boy and his family and extradition of the couple from their village.
The draft law also recognizes that the police often act in collusion with the girl’s family and level false cases of kidnapping and rape against the boy. The law thus provides for preventive and rehabilitative measures in these cases.
Further the specific nature of the crime separates it from a routine murder and categorizing it separately would also make the crime visible.
“It is deplorable that the present UPA government refused to pass a law on crimes and killings in the name of ‘honour’ due to narrow vote bank politics,” AIDWA’s statement says.
AIDWA demanded that the process of making a separate law should be expedited as even Courts have recognized the necessity for this. This law is necessary to protect the precious life of young people who opt to go in for a choice marriage which cuts across caste and religion.