High Court takes Suo Moto notice of negative impact of lockdown on women, girls

Directs all courts in J&K, Ladakh to treat cases of domestic abuse as urgent
File Photo/ GK
File Photo/ GK

Jammu and Kashmir High Court today ordered that all thecourts in the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh shall treatcases of domestic abuse as urgent and proceed with the matters in accordancewith the circulars issued regarding the procedure to be followed to ensuresocial distancing.

Taking suo moto notice of negative impact of lockdownimposed due to COVID-19 pandemic on women and girls, a Coram consisting ofChief Justice, Justice Geeta Mittal and Justice Rajnesh Oswal today heard thecase from their respective residences through video conferencing.

The Court highlighted the point that globally it has beenobserved that the adverse social and economic consequences of the pandemic forwomen and girls are devastating.

The High Court issued notices to the Secretary, Departmentof Social Welfare, Governments of Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir andLadakh and Member Secretary, JKSLSA to submit a report with regard to the stepstaken regarding domestic or any other kind of violence being faced by women onaccount of the implementation of the COVID-19 lockdown.

The Court directed concerned officials to examine severalremedial measures taken by various countries in this regard and a view be takenwith regard to the requirements and steps to be taken to mitigate thesufferings of the victims of domestic violence in the twin Union Territories.

The Court directed that a report of the measures in place,steps underway and those contemplated be placed before it before the next date.

Furthermore, Secretary, Jammu and Kashmir Legal ServicesAuthority have been directed to call for list of all cases involving cases ofdomestic violence which are pending as complaints with the police stations inthe Union Territories or in the courts and ascertain the safety and well-beingof the complainants. The Secretaries of the Jammu and Kashmir Legal ServicesAuthorities may seek the assistance of police and para legal volunteers in thisregard, the court observed.

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