Activist Rehana fathima has approached the Supreme Court against the decision of the Kerala High Court rejecting her bail plea in a case under the POCSO Act and IT Act concerning a controversial video.
After the Kerala High Court denied bail to Rehana Fathima in relation to a controversial video involving her children aged 8 and 14 painting her semi-nude body, the activist has now approached the Supreme Court seeking relief. The petition is filed through Advocate Renjith B Malar.
These submissions of Rehana Fathima were rejected by the High Court that concluded that there was prima facie case made out against the activist which brought the petitioner to the Supreme Court raising two questions.
- “Whether female nudity (even when not visible) per se constitutes obscenity?
- Whether children painting on their mother’s body can be concluded to be “sexual gratification” and “child abuse” under the stringent laws?”
The petitioner Rehana Fathima had uploaded a video titled “Body art and politics” on YouTube showing her children painting on her semi-nude body. The video, the petitioner highlights, has not been taken down by the platform itself considering there is no nudity in the same. Despite the same, the prosecution has a made a case against her for offences punishable under Sections 13, 14, and 15 of the POCSO Act, and Section 67B of the IT Act as well as Section 17 of the Juvenile Justice Act.
In this backdrop, Fathima’s plea before Supreme Court says,
“The Petitioner, while being semi-nude, has allowed her body to be used as a canvas by her children to paint on, and there can probably be nobody except a pervert who would be aroused to sexual desire by seeing the nature of the work. In addition, the Petitioner’s message accompanying the uploaded edited video makes it clear that she intended to normalize the female form for her children and not allow the distorted ideas of sexualization to pervade their minds.”
To add further, assailing the provisions of POCSO Act invoked against her, it is also contended that there is no indecent or obscene representation of children in the edited video uploaded on the internet and “it is impossible to conclude that any child was used for the purposes of sexual gratification.”
On these grounds, the order of the Kerala High Court have been assailed by the petitioner before the Supreme Court.