A guest post by Praveen Talwar.
Many years ago, in 1990, something changed in India. It wasn’t something that everyone noticed. It wasn’t something that a lot of people even cared about. But it was something big, something to do with how the law actually extends its protection to citizens in practice. In October 1990, the Supreme Court of India ruled in favor of one Banubi Sheikh, a woman who admitted in court that she was party to an extramarital relationship, a woman who also stuck to her guns in stating that that little fact should be treated as irrelevant to her main allegation that she was assaulted and raped by a policeman at her home.
Like many things in law, it wasn’t the case that was important; it was the precedent. For the first time, the supreme court explicitly stated that a woman’s sex life was her own business…
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