‘Everybody to blame for poor state of women’

CHENNAI: Indicating their outrage over atrocities committed on women, top judges of the country on Sunday made scathing remarks about living conditions of women in India.

Speaking at a national conference of the All India Federation of Women Lawyers here, justice P Sathasivam, judge, Supreme Court, said: “The traditional system of female infanticide whereby female child was done away with after birth by poisoning or letting her choke on husk continues in a different form by taking advantage of advanced medical techniques. Unfortunately, developed medical science is misused to get rid of a girl child before birth.”

The other judge from the Supreme Court at the conference, Justice Ranjana Prasad Desai, said, “Independent India is 65 years old. Yet, women’s lot has not improved. Most of them live in sub-human conditions and are treated like chattel.”

The hugely popular justice Ranjana Desai, who was described as the ‘favourite child of mother justice’ by the organizers, did not spare anyone for the sorry condition of women. Besides blaming all castes and communities for violence against women, she said even the criminal justice system had failed to protect women.

“The police, the prosecutors, the courts and, in fact the entire criminal justice administration system has failed to give relief to women though the Constitution zealously protects women,” Desai said.

Noting that millions of female fetuses are destroyed every year and women are trafficked at will, she said conviction rate of registered cases continued to be low.

On his part, chief justice of the Madras high court, Justice M Y Eqbal said, “Women’s empowerment remains an enigma trapped in mystery, inspite of tall claims made by social activists and lip service of administrators.”

He added, “Women’s empowerment includes not justice granting them the right to vote or earmarking certain percentage in representation in democratic institutions, but also giving a woman the chance to bloom from her own groundings and surroundings.”


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