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September 24, 2023


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‘Can’t justify what happened in Manipur by saying this happened elsewhere…’: SC on Manipur viral video incident

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The Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on Monday slammed a lawyer during a hearing on the Manipur Viral video case which saw two Kuki Zo women being paraded naked by a mob of Meitei men on 4 May.

The CJI on Monday told the lawyer that undoubtedly there are crimes that are taking place against women across the country, that is our social reality.

“We are dealing with an unprecedented magnitude of violence against women in communal and sectarian strife. We cannot justify what happened in Manipur by saying that this and this happened elsewhere. Are you saying protect all women or don’t protect anyone? news agency ANI quoted the CJI.

The Supreme Court on Monday slammed the whataboutery that has ensued the sexual harassment cases in Manipur. While Opposition bloc has blamed the ruling dispensation in Manipur, the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) led by Chief Minister N Biren Singh for delaying action against the sexual harassment cases.

During the hearing the lawyer had mentioned a plea saying what happened in Manipur, similar incidents happened in West Bengal and Rajasthan. A video came of a Panchayat candidate who was stripped and paraded naked in West Bengal. “Daughters pan India need to be protected” the lawyer said.

The claims of the lawyer seems to have echoed a point put up by the BJP dispensation across the country to counter the Opposition’s claims.

Harping on the excess cases of crimes against women in India, CJI Chandrachud said that one crime cannot be justified by similar crimes that have taken place elsewhere.


During the hearing, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre, told a bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud that the Union of India has no objection if the apex court monitors the investigation into the Manipur violence.

The bench, also comprising Justice J B Pardiwala and Justice Manoj Misra, is hearing a batch of petitions concerning the violence in Manipur.

At the outset, senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the two women who were seen in a 4 May video being paraded naked in Manipur, said they have filed a petition in the matter.

The hearing in the matter is underway.

The apex court on 20 July observed that it was “deeply disturbed” by the video of two women being paraded naked in strife-torn Manipur, saying that using women as instruments for perpetrating violence is “simply unacceptable in a constitutional democracy”.

Taking cognisance of the video, a bench headed by the chief justice of India directed the Centre and the Manipur government to take immediate remedial, rehabilitative and preventive steps and apprise it of the action taken.

On July 27, the Centre informed the top court that it has transferred to the CBI the probe into a case related to two women being paraded naked in strife-torn Manipur, saying the government has “zero tolerance towards any crimes against women”.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), in an affidavit filed through its Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla, also urged the top court to transfer the trial outside Manipur in the case for the conclusion of the trial in a time-bound manner. Seven people have been arrested in the case so far.

Scores of people have been killed and several hundred injured since ethnic violence broke out in the state on May 3 when a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts to protest against the majority Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe status.”

(With inputs from PTI)

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Updated: 31 Jul 2023, 03:31 PM IST

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