Amid strong voices against caste council rulings and honour killings, experts, on May 11, demanded an amendment in Indian Penal Code to define these deplorable activities as a ‘heinous crime’ by adding a new section to the criminal law. “There is lack of accurate information on honour killings in India, primarily because it is not defined in our law. It should be defined as a heinous crime, it is a crime against women,” said Supreme Court Advocate Kirti Singh during an interactive panel discussion on honour killing.
Citing example of charges levelled against late journalist Nirupama Pathak’s boyfriend Priyabhanshu Ranjan, some panel members alleged that false cases of rape and abduction have been filed against the boy by the girl’s family to add insult to the injury. On diktats of khaps or caste councils, Singh said instead of taking action against the culprits, who are supported by such panchayats, the police actually help them by their behaviour.