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Upskirting to be illegal across UK

ANI | Updated: Jan 17, 2019 05:17 IST

London [UK], Jan 17 (ANI): Upskirting, the practice of taking secret photographs under a woman's skirt, is all set to be a criminal offence in England and Wales where offenders will face up to two years in jail.
The legislation was passed by the House of Lords, the upper house of the UK Parliament on Tuesday and is now awaiting royal assent, CNN reported.
The anti-upskirting law came into being after a 26-year-old woman Gina Martin had started an online campaign, stating that she was a victim of upskirting at a music festival some 18 months ago.
Martin, who hails from Liverpool, was attending the function in London's Hyde Park when a man inappropriately rubbed against her while his friend lurked nearby.
After the House of Lords passed the new legislation, Martin took to her Twitter handle, saying that she was "over the moon."
"After becoming a victim and recognising the gap in the law, I.. partnered with Ryan Whelan, of Gibson Dunn and began 18 months of exhaustive, emotional and life-changing work. I always thought politics was (impenetrable), but with the right help and the willpower you can do it!" she wrote on the micro-blogging site.
Apart from the two-year jail term for perpetrators, the most serious offenders of upskirting would be named on a register for sex offenders.
The online campaign was carried forward by Liberal Democrat MP Wera Hobhouse, who first introduced the legislation in the Parliament.
However in June last year, the measure faced a brief obstacle after some concerns were raised by Conservative Party MP Christopher Chope, prompting cries of "shame" from other parliamentarians, as per the report.
Ultimately, the legislation got the backing from the UK government after Prime Minister Theresa May expressed discontent over the progress of making upskirting a criminal offence.
Scotland already has an anti-upskirting law in its place since 2010. Other countries and territories have similar legislations, making the practice illegal in several US and Australian states and in India and New Zealand. (ANI)