Although women may be victims of any of the general crimes such as ‘murder’, ‘robbery’, cheating’, etc, only the crimes which are directed specifically against women are characterised as ‘crimes against women’. Various new legislations have been brought and amendments have been made in existing laws with a view to handle these crimes effectively. These are broadly classified under two categories.

1. Crimes under the Indian Penal Code (IPC):

(i) Rape (Sec. 376 IPC)

(ii) Kidnapping & abduction for specified purposes (Sec. 363 - 373 IPC)

(iii) Homicide for dowry, dowry deaths or their attempts (Sec.302/304-B IPC)

(iv) Torture - both mental and physical (Sec. 498-A IPC)

(v) Assault on women with intent to outrage her modesty (Sec. 354 IPC)

(vi) Insult to the modesty of women (Sec. 509 IPC)

(vii) Importation of girl from foreign country (upto 21 years of age) (Sec. 366-B IPC)

2. Crimes under the Special & Local Laws (SLL)

(i) Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956

(ii) Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961

(iii) Commission of Sati Prevention Act, 1987

(iv) Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986

Nirbhaya Act: This new Act has expressly recognised certain acts as offences which were dealt under related laws. These new offences like, acid attack, sexual harassment, voyeurism, stalking have been incorporated into the Indian Penal Code: