State Women’s Commission chairperson Susieben Shah has asked all political parties in the state to set up anti-sexual harassment cells in their district and state units. In view of the murder of Kalpana Giri, general secretary of Youth Congress, Latur city unit, Shah will pursue the matter with the political parties after the elections are conducted.
“I had written to all political parties before the code of conduct came into place. It's very much necessary in the changed circumstances now and the committee will take care of cases of sexual harassment in the parties. Women should feel secure in public life. There must be some redressal mechanism for women in public life. Therefore, I believe such committees should be in place so that crimes are not committed against women. I will pursue this with all parties after the elections are over,” said Shah.
Twenty-nine-year old Giri was murdered and her body was found in a lake in Tuljapur, 60 kilometres away from Latur. Two youth Congress workers have been arrested in the case.
Shah believes that if such a committee was existing, then this crime may not have taken place. “I believe there must have been some move by these accused in the case against her before committing the crime. If a complaint was made at that stage, then this might not have happened,” Shah points out.
The general secretary of the city Youth Congress was missing since March 21 and Kalpana’s body was found in a lake two days later.
Giri was travelling with her two colleagues, who were on their way to attend the birthday party of Amit Deshmukh, MLA from Latur.
Shah has now sought proper investigations into the case by the state government. “I have demanded that the government appoint an eminent lawyer as a public prosecutor even if they are unable to field Ujjwal Nikam in the case. Strictest punishment needs to be meted out to those who committed the crime and I have already spoken to the Latur superintendent of the police on this issue,” Shah added.