Don't Ask for Death Penalty But Surety of Punishment: Azmi

New Delhi
Don't Ask for Death Penalty But Surety of Punishment: Azmi
Death penalty for rapists will delay the process of justice and instead the need of the hour is to ask for certainty of punishment, feels noted actress Shabana Azmi.

Speaking at a workshop on gender sensitisation organised by the CISF, the 61-year-old former Parliamentarian said delay in implementation of the law is the real challenge faced in the country today.

"Laws by themselves cannot change anything. We need laws to be implemented, we need firm investigation, speedy justice and we need to ensure that it is not the severity of the punishment but certainty of the punishment," she said.

"There is great hue and cry for death penalty for rapists but people who deal with law say in cases of rape it has taken 10 years and even more before culprits are booked.

"In the case of death penalty, such stringent evidence is required before it is awarded. It will retard the process of justice. We do not have to ask for death penalty but certainty in punishment," she said.

The veteran cine star also stressed on bringing about a change in the mindset of the society by providing right form of education.

"I was going though some questions in textbooks for a 3-year-old which had some typical questions and answers. The question was 'Where is the father' and the answer is 'He is in the office'... The next question is 'Where is the mother' and the answer is 'She is in the kitchen'. So why are we making it in the head of the child something that role plays will happen according to the gender.

"So just to look at education and say it is required is not enough. We have to see that sometimes education merely reinforces gender divide, and that is not what we need. It must begin with us, with the way we treat our children, our daughters," Azmi said.

Referring to the December 2012 Delhi gangrape case, she said, "Something new happened in the aftermath of the Nirbhaya case. She was reported to have said 'I want to live', which is a far cry from victims of rape believing that they have been tainted forever and that there fates are worst than deaths.

"We welcome this change. Shift the blame, shift the shame is the new slogan."

The two-day gender sensitisation workshop focuses on inculcating among CISF officers the right attitude and behaviour towards women.

"The need for having this workshop rises from the fact that the CISF has a sizable number of women in its work force.

"Gender sensitisation is a very crucial part of our training and CISF is observing 2013 as the year for women's safety and security," said CISF DG Ravi.
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