A round-up of what’s happening in the worlds of gender and sexuality
Physical trainer arrested for raping, killing dalit girl
According to a PTI report, physical trainer Vijendra Singh has been arrested for allegedly raping and killing a 17 year old dalit student at a private college in Nokha.
According to Round Table India, the girl, who was from a village in the Barmer district, was studying to become a school teacher. Her body was found in the water tank of her college. The previous night, she had called her father and told him that a warden had asked her to clean Vijendra Singh’s room. She told her father that Singh raped her while she was in his room. The institute then forced her, a minor, to sign a statement saying the abuse was “by mutual consent.”
Protests have been organised in Jaipur, and several other parts of the country, including Bangalore and New Delhi.
Now, men too can’t enter core area in Trimbakeshwar temple
A day after women belonging to the Bhumata Brigade were barred from entering the inner sanctum of the Shani Shingnapur temple in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, the authorities of another temple in the state which bars women from entering the sanctum sanctorum – the Trimbakeshwar temple in Nashik – have hit upon a novel way of defying the law prohibiting gender discrimination in places of worship. According to the Times of India, they have banned the entry of men as well. Temple authorities told the newspaper this way they were now providing ‘equal treatment’ to men and women.
December 16 gangrape: SC to hear appeals on Monday
A three-judge bench at the Supreme Court will hear the appeals of the four men convicted of the December 2012 rape and murder of Jyoti Singh, the 23-year-old Delhi woman whose case triggered nationwide protests and led to a tightening of rape laws.
According to a report in the Hindustan Times, the appeals will be heard by Justice Dipak Misra, Justice V Gopala Gowda and Justice Kurian Joseph.
The prime accused, Ram Singh, was found dead in his jail cell in March 2014. The juvenile accused was sentenced to three years in a reformation home. He was released last December.
The four convicts are appealing their death sentence. Their execution was stayed by the Supreme Court in 2014.
Egyptian feminist leader Mozn Hassan resolute in face of official investigation
Women’s rights organisations and academics from around the world have released statements supporting Mozn Hassan, the executive director of the Egyptian organisation Nazra for Feminist Studies. Hassan is the latest target of an ongoing crackdown by the Egyptian government against human rights organisations and activists.
Hassan is being investigated under case 173/2011, called the ‘foreign funding case’, which targets organisations for illegally receiving funds from outside the country. According to the report, Hassan says Nazra is being targeted because it is “not this nice acceptable women’s organisation.” “We think the feminist movement is a political movement,” she said.
Investigations of this nature began in Egypt in 2011, and led to 43 NGO workers being convicted in 2013.
The International Centre for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) has also released a statement condemning the Egyptian government’s crackdown on human rights workers.
‘Absolutely terrifying’: transgender people and the prison system
An article on ABC Radio National covers the human rights abuses and sexual violence faced by transgender prisoners in Western Australia.
Rebecca Leighton, who works with the organisation People for Sex Worker Rights spoke about the detention of sex worker Sienna Fox, who has been put in a prison for men since February. Fox is a transgender woman. “In no other circumstances would a woman be placed in a maximum security male prison,” said Leighton.
Leighton says that the government is not monitoring the number of transgender woman incarcerated in male prisons throughout Western Australia.
The report quotes Lisa, an incarcerated transgender indigenous woman, or sistergirl, as saying: ‘I had people attempting to rape me, and other times I was raped in prison.’
Do you know of any other development or issue we should highlight in this column? Write to me at [email protected]