The Constitution of India, as the supreme law of the land, enshrines principles that uphold gender justice, ensuring equality and prohibiting discrimination. Over the years, landmark case laws have further strengthened the constitutional promise of gender justice.
- Constitutional Provisions:
- Article 14: Guarantees equality before the law, ensuring that every individual, irrespective of gender, is equal in the eyes of the law.
- Article 15(1): Prohibits discrimination by the state on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, or place of birth.
- Article 15(3): Allows the state to make special provisions for women and children.
- Article 16: Ensures equality of opportunity in matters of public employment without any discrimination, including on the basis of sex.
- Article 39(d): Mandates equal pay for equal work for both men and women.
- Article 42: Directs the state to make provisions for ensuring just and humane conditions of work and maternity relief.
- Landmark Case Laws:
- Mathura Rape Case (1972): The acquittal of policemen accused of rape led to nationwide protests, resulting in amendments to the Evidence Act, Criminal Procedure Code, and the Indian Penal Code in 1983, introducing the offense of custodial rape.
- Mary Roy vs. State of Kerala (1986): Challenged the inheritance legislation of the Syrian Christian community, ensuring equal rights for women with their male siblings regarding ancestral property. copyright©iasexpress.net
- Vishaka vs. State of Rajasthan (1997): Laid down guidelines to address sexual harassment at the workplace, later leading to the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act in 2013.
- Shayara Bano vs. Union of India (2017): The Supreme Court deemed instant triple talaq unconstitutional, upholding the rights of Muslim women.
Conclusion: The Constitution of India, complemented by progressive judgments, has been instrumental in advancing gender justice in the country. While significant strides have been made, the journey towards complete gender justice continues, requiring collective societal efforts and robust legal frameworks.