July 14, 2024
Addressing a stranger woman darling is a crime: Calcutta High Court

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Addressing a stranger woman darling is a crime: Calcutta High Court

Kolkata: While adjudicating on a case, the Port Blair bench of the Kolkata High Court ruled that addressing an unknown woman as “darling” constitutes sexual harassment. The court asserted that such an act falls under the punishable offense as per Section 354(A) (1) of the Indian Penal Code.

The case before the Port Blair bench of the Kolkata High Court involved a person who referred to a female constable as “darling,” prompting the constable to approach the court against the individual. The defendant had remarked, “Are you here to issue a challan, darling?” The court clarified that addressing not only a female constable but any unknown ordinary woman as “darling” would be considered an offense.

Addressing a stranger woman darling is a crime: Calcutta High Court

Addressing a stranger woman darling is a crime: Calcutta High Court
Addressing a stranger woman darling is a crime: Calcutta High Court

Indian Penal Code Section – 354(A)

Section 354(A) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) covers accusations of “Sexual Harassment” or “Sexually Colored Remarks” against any individual. This section was introduced as an amendment to the IPC in 2013. It entails penalizing individuals who engage in inappropriate or offensive behavior towards others. This provision is particularly intended for the protection of women, and it encompasses actions such as sexual harassment, unwelcome physical contact, advances, sexually colored remarks, or any other behaviors that make a person uncomfortable or embarrassed. If someone commits such an offense, they may face legal action.

Punishment under Section 354(A) IPC:

  • Imprisonment: The punishment can extend up to three years for the first offense.
  • Fine: In addition to imprisonment, the offender may also be liable to pay a fine.

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