Laws for Women’s Safety in India

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Laws for Women's Safety in India; women's safety laws in India

Women have predominantly throughout the times been secondary to men. However, with the progress of the world into modernism with the waves of feminism and the growth of India, laws have come into being that protect women in India. However, atrocities towards women still occur in India, for example, the woman from Spain who was gang-raped in Jharkhand, India. If men are still so brazen with their immorality are the 691 million women in India even safe? This blog gets into the details of the Laws for Women’s Safety in India. 

List of Laws for Women’s Safety in India

You can find below a complete list of Indian laws that work to keep the daughters of India safe.

DateLaw (Act)Brief Description of Act
30th December, 1956The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) ActProhibits commercial sex work and trafficking of persons for prostitution.
20th May, 1961The Dowry Prohibition ActProhibits giving or taking dowry and punishes demand or harassment for dowry.
23rd December, 1986The Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) ActProhibits depiction of women in a derogatory or indecent manner.
3rd January, 1988 (1987)The Commission of Sati (Prevention) ActProhibits the practice of Sati and prescribes punishment for its abetment.
13th September, 2005The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence ActOffers protection from domestic violence (physical, emotional, sexual, economic) and grants rights to residence orders, protection orders, and monetary compensation.
22nd April, 2013The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) ActProtects women from sexual harassment in the workplace and mandates committees to investigate complaints.
31st July, 2019The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act It criminalizes the practice of Triple Talaq. 
List of Laws for Women’s Safety in India

The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act of 1956

The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act of 1956 aims to fight sex trafficking and exploitation in India. 

  • It criminalizes running brothels, forcing people into prostitution, and profiting from it. 
  • Moreover, the Act protects both women and men, hence recognising prostitution as a form of abuse. 
  • While it does not outlaw consensual sex work, it targets those who control or exploit others in the sex trade.

Also Read: Importance of Women’s Education

The Dowry Prohibition Act of 1961

The Dowry Prohibition Act of 1961 fights against the social evil of dowry, a payment demanded by the groom’s family during marriage in India. 

  • It criminalizes giving, taking, or even abetting the giving or taking of dowry. 
  • Additionally, dowry harassment is a serious offence under this law. 
  • Consequently, this act empowers women by eliminating a financial burden on their families and protects them from exploitation. 
  • Though enacted in 1961, continuous efforts are needed to eradicate this deeply rooted practice as it continues today.

The Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act of 1986

The Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, enacted in 1986, aims to curb the portrayal of women in a derogatory or indecent way. 

  • In addition, it applies to advertisements, publications, and other media. 
  • Moreover, this law helps protect women from being objectified and stereotyped. 
  • However, the definition of “indecent” can be subjective, and the Act might restrict artistic expression in some cases.

The Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act of 1987

The Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act of 1987 outlaws the barbaric practice of Sati, where a widow is burned or buried alive with her deceased husband. 

  • It punishes not only those who force or coerce a woman into Sati but also anyone who assists or glorifies it. 
  • Furthermore, this law strengthens India’s efforts to guarantee women’s safety and eradicate a cruel social tradition.

The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act of 2005

The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act of 2005, offers a shield to Indian women facing abuse at home. 

  • It defines domestic violence broadly and includes physical, emotional, sexual, and economic harm. 
  • Additionally, this law empowers women to seek court orders for residence in the shared household, protection from further violence, and even compensation.
  • It also establishes a support system with Protection Officers to guide women through the process and access services like legal aid and counselling.

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act of 2013

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act of 2013, shields women from harassment at their jobs. 

  • It mandates every organisation to form a committee to investigate complaints. 
  • Consequently, this committee addresses a range of inappropriate behaviour, from unwelcome advances to threats. 
  • The Act empowers women to report harassment and seek redressal, thus promoting a safer work environment.

Also Read: 5 Ways to Promote Gender Equality in the Workplace

The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act of 2019

Passed in 2019, the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act outlaws the discriminatory practice of Triple Talaq, where a Muslim husband instantly divorces his wife by saying “talaq” three times. 

  • This vulnerable position for women is addressed by the Act making Triple Talaq illegal and punishable by imprisonment for up to 3 years. 
  • In addition, it also empowers Muslim women by granting them rights to financial support and potentially child custody after divorce. 
  • This law is a necessary step towards gender equality and safeguarding the rights of Muslim women in India.

New Criminal Laws to Women’s Reservation Bill 2023

The Women’s Reservation Bill or the 106th Constitution Amendment Act in India aims to boost female political participation. It proposes reserving 33% of seats in Parliament (Lok Sabha) and State assemblies for women. This would create a stronger voice for women in government and decision-making. The Bill passed in September 2023, includes a 15-year timeline and provisions for women from disadvantaged groups within the reserved seats.

New criminal laws to women reservation bill, the 5 most important laws from 2023. Source: ThePrint.

Why Women’s Safety Laws are Important?

Women’s safety laws are important due to the high prevalence of gender-based violence. Moreover, here is why:

  • Addressing Specific Issues: Laws like the Dowry Prohibition Act tackle cultural practices like dowry harassment which is a major threat to women’s safety in India.
  • Empowerment Despite Societal Norms: In a culture where traditional gender roles can be restrictive the provision of strong laws empower women to report abuse and claim their rights.
  • Shifting the Narrative: Stricter punishments and legal recourse can prevent crimes and send a message that violence against women is unacceptable.
  • Overcoming Fear of Reporting: Additionally, knowing the legal framework can encourage women to report crimes which is crucial for investigation and prosecution.

Thus, while India has a robust legal framework, effective implementation is key and where we fall short most of the time. Women’s safety laws are an important step towards a safer and more just India for all.


What is a violation of women’s rights in India?

The violation of women’s rights in India is the denial of basic rights and protection from violence, like dowry deaths or sexual harassment. 

Which legal body has been set up in India for the protection of women’s rights?

The legal body that has been set up in India for the protection of women’s rights is the National Commission for Women (NCW).

What is the ladies harassment act?

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act (2013) protects women from harassment at work and requires companies to have committees to address complaints.

Lastly, we hope you liked our blog and gained an understanding of the Laws for Women’s Safety in India. Moreover, you may even read more blogs and empower yourself with knowledge regarding Civics and Polity!

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