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India's Forgotten Rapes: the story of Amandeep Kaur

Amandeep KaurAmandeep KaurThe tragice ordeal and ultimate death of Jyoti Pandey in Delhi has turned the eyes of the world to the 'rape problem' in India.  It is no secret that shocking deficiencies exist with respect to the prosecution of rapists and the treatment of victims in India.  A recent blog in the Washington Post correctly stated that India's rape problem is also a police problem.  Not only are police unwilling to investigate and prosecute sexual crimes, they also often punish the victims with insensitive questioning and invasive examinations.

But the problem is greater still.  Indian Police and security forces are often themselves implicated in sexual violence. Shockingly however, they enjoy impunity from prosecution in rape as per Section 197 of India’s Criminal Procedure Code and Section 6 of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act of 1958.

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CTV News - WSO calling for India to take stronger action to prevent violence against women

WSO's Balpreet Singh talks about combatting sexual violence in India on CTV News

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WSO Takes Part in Vaughan Festival of Light

On Thursday November 13th, WSO joined several other faith and cultural communities in Vaughan for the Festival of Light.

The Festival of Light was organized by the National Congress of Italian Canadians (N.C.I.C.) -Toronto District in collaboration with the City of Vaughan, Hon. Julian Fantino, PC, MP, York Region Police, and Rotary Club of Woodbridge.

The Festival of Light was organized to learn more about one another by sharing each of our interpretations of light and its significance to one’s culture. This event was not a religious event, however many of the interpretations were tied to religion.

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WSO in 2012: Year in Review

2012 marked WSO’s 28th year in the service of the Sikh community. Below is a brief review of our activities and achievements in 2012 in the three main areas of WSO’s operation: legal advocacy, outreach & education, and media response:

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Surviving a Fake Encounter: The Story of Surinder Singh Fauji

Yesterday on International Human Rights Day, we focused on the practice of "fake encounters" in India.

One of the only individuals to have ever escaped such a fake encounter and survived to tell the tale is Surinder Singh Fauji.  Fauji was a retired Indian serviceman who, along with members of his family, was repeatedly arrested and tortured between 1986 to 1994.  His only fault was having once rented a room to a member of the All India Sikh Students Federation. 

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International Human Rights Day: Stop False Encounters in India

Last week, India’ National Human Rights Commission informed the Supreme Court of India that it has confirmed 191 ‘false encounters’ in the past five years.  This was based on a total of 1,671 complaints of false encounters to the NHRC during the same period. 

On today’s International Human Rights Day, we look at the menace of ‘false encounters’ in India, as we call on India to crack down on its security forces to ensure this barbaric practice ends immediately.

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Asking the Hard Questions on Gender Based Violence

Today's National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women  and the 'days of action' following the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women are an opportunity for South Asians in Canada to reflect on violence against women.  Over the years there have been several tragic cases of violence against women in the South Asian community that have been well documented by media.  Responses within the community to these tr

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Compassion (Daya) as a tool to end gender based violence

Today, as we move to day 5 of the 16 days of activism to end gender based violence, World Sikh Organization of Canada would like to share a tool that we think may help us all do just that.  It's called the Charter for Compassion.

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Celebrating Guru Nanak's Message of Equality

The World Sikh Organization of Canada extends its warmest greetings on the Gurpurab (birth anniversary) of Sri Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh faith.

Sikhs across Canada and the world will mark this holiday with celebrations both at home and at local gurdwaras.  Many gurdwaras hold akhand paaths or 48 hour non-stop readings of Sri Guru Granth Sahib (the Sikh scripture) followed by keertan (singing of verses from the scripture).  Gurdwaras are often illuminated with lights on the occasion and also provide langar or a free community meal to all who attend. 

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