Supreme Court lawyer said a tenant has more rights than a woman, on Sunday, at the Hyderabad Literary Festival , writer and social activist Indira Jaising speaking at the panel discussion on Women and Law.
Moderated by Kalpana Kannabiran who is sociologist and lawyer, the session saw Ms Jaising, eminent development economist Padmini Swaminathan and ex-Supreme Court judge Justice B.P. Jeevan Reddy speaking on women’s issues.
Justice Reddy said “Even after decades of independence, we are yet to apply Article 14 of the Constitution, which entitles equality before law with respect to the inequitable and oppressive personal laws.” He added “It is still treated as an unnecessary inconvenience, which can lead to chaos.”
As responding to a question on misuse of the Domestic Violence Act, Ms Jaising said, “A woman demanding her share of property at the time of exiting from a marriage can’t be termed as misuse of law. It’s like telling a woman that your place is at home.”
She said “The law can act as a catalyst for change in women’s issues. But there are so many processes, in addition to the legislative process, which need to be put in place. Women need counselling, they need help to settle down.”
Justice Reddy said while talking about women having to give up jobs for the sake of the family, “The concept of man being the earning head of the family has been engrained since so many centuries, that it is not so easy to get rid off it”. “How we apply the existing laws for sexual minorities remains a challenge,” Kalpana Kannabiran said on a question about laws to protect rights of transgenders.