The problem
Violence against Women is one of the
most pervasive forms of human rights
violation. It is also widespread in
...
of actions. To fulfill states international
obligation, the G0N has taken several
positive step. However, so far the issue...
for VAW. There will always be social
inequality, political instability and
failure of good governance in the country
if wo...
girls, including sexual violence, are
adequately addressed.
•	 Take measures to ensure universal
access to multi-sector se...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×

Nepali Women Need More Than State Commitments to End VAW

226

Published on

most pervasive forms of human rights violation. It is also widespread in Nepal. According to the data collected by WOREC Nepal, out of the total 1473 cases from January to December 2012, domestic violence accounts for a total of 768 cases. This means that domestic violence is the biggest category of VAW, followed by rape cases (215), social violence (179) which includes blaming as witch (55), mental torture (19), beating/physical torture (78), child marriage (9), question on chastity (2), threaten/threaten to kill (6) and verbal assault (10). Accordingly murder 153, attempted murder 26, sexual abuse 64, suicide 8, trafficking 38, and attempted to trafficking 13 were reported (WOREC Nepal 2012 VAW data based upon monthly report from Jan-Dec 2012.). However, it has to be kept in mind that such figures understate the problem, as most of the time VAW cases are seldom reported.

0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total Views
226
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
4
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Transcript of "Nepali Women Need More Than State Commitments to End VAW"

  1. 1. The problem Violence against Women is one of the most pervasive forms of human rights violation. It is also widespread in Nepal. According to the data collected by WOREC Nepal, out of the total 1473 cases from January to December 2012, domestic violence accounts for a total of 768 cases. This means that domestic violence is the biggest category of VAW, followed by rape cases (215), social violence (179) which includes blaming as witch (55), mental torture (19), beating/physical torture (78), child marriage (9), question on chastity (2), threaten/threaten to kill (6)andverbalassault(10).Accordingly murder 153, attempted murder 26, sexual abuse 64, suicide 8, trafficking 38, and attempted to trafficking 13 were reported1 . However, it has to be kept in mind that such figures understate the problem, as most of the time VAW cases are seldom reported. 1 WOREC Nepal 2012 VAW data based upon monthly report from Jan-Dec 2012. Documented cases Women right activists are raising voices against VAW since a long time. In recent days, concerned youth have joined force in this campaign more actively. The Occupy Baluwatar campaign demanding justice to Sita Rai2 , Bindu Thakur3 , Shiva Hasmi4 and Saraswati Subedi5 is such an example; and has succeeded in attracting the attention of the whole notion. This historic movement has centered around creating pressure on the Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai led Government. The movement aims at getting the government to take immediate actions against the culprits and to establish a peaceful and social environment where women can live with respect and honor. Legal protection Interim Constitution of Nepal guarantees every citizens right to live with dignity and in equality. Government of Nepal (G0N) is a party of 7 big Human Right treaties such as CEDAW, CAT, CERD, and others. G0N has accepted ICPD plan of Action, Beijing plan of action, Vienna plan of actions among various other human right instruments and plan 2 Returnee migrant workers raped by police after her arrival in Kathmandu and looted by immigration officers 3 Burnt alive by her family members 4 Burnt alive by family members 5 Domestic workers suspicious death/ murder hanging 1 NepaliWomenNeedMoreThan StateCommitmentstoEndVAW
  2. 2. of actions. To fulfill states international obligation, the G0N has taken several positive step. However, so far the issues are far from being adequately addressed. Incidents like burning women alive and taking out their eyes are some of the worst kind of crimes against women. This demonstrates how the society treats women after falsely accusing them for practicing witchcraft or defying any socio-cultural practices established in the society, like marrying out of their community. Cases of rape at public spaces are increasing. Cases of marital rape is still being considered as private matter, in spite of the fact that there are laws against this. Absence of a proper witness protection mechanism; presence of a lengthy judicial process; weak investigation mechanisms; and absence of a support mechanism along with stigma women have to bear in case of sexual violence, inhibits women to register such cases or even compel them to withdraw cases they have registered. Difficulty to get First Information Report (FIR) registered at police station adds the difficulty to those who dare to speak against the violence and seek justice. There are many loop holes and gaps in the existing laws, which need to be addressed immediately. For example, the Domestic Violence Crime and Punishment Act 2066-67 needs effective implementation constantly and devise further strategies to effectively deal with domestic violence (DV) as it lacks clarity on the legal processes as well as incorporation of all the aspects of DV. Nepal’s legal framework provides a narrow definition of rape that focuses on issues of “consent” and interpreting it as forceful penetrative sexual intercourse exclusively. The statute of limitations for filing a charge-sheet remains 35 days from the date of the commission of the crime, which is largely inadequate taking into consideration the gravity of the offence6 . Addressing structural causes of VAW and girls In an alarming rate, a series of rape and murder incidents and other forms of violence against women (VAW) are increasing day by day. There has been an infamous rape case recently of a returnee migrant woman by a police officer and looting her hard earned money by Immigration Officers. One of the root causes of VAW in Nepal is the persistent discrimination against women. The documentation of sexual violence remains scarce because of social and cultural taboos, which make victims reluctant to share their stories out of shame or for fear of being blamed and the fear of repercussions or further victimization if perpetrators were reported. In Nepali society, patriarchal structure, superstitions and reluctance to send girls to school (especially in higher classes), not having right to citizenship and property, fully and marginalization of women are the factors accelerating the cases of VAW at large. At the same time, impunity in the state and weak enforcement of law are also responsible 6 National Women's Commission, 2011 2
  3. 3. for VAW. There will always be social inequality, political instability and failure of good governance in the country if women and girls are not protected. Case Study Manisha was a 13 year- old middle class joint family girl. One day while she was returning home from school, she met her uncle near her house. He gave her 10 rupees and requested her to get him some tobacco and a cigarette. When she took this to his house, he raped her and threatened “If you tell anyone about this incident, I will kill you and your family”. Manisha was too scared to tell anyone about the incident. She was in her first menstrual cycle when the unpleasant incident occurred. Manisha was physically and mentally traumatized. Her health started deteriorating further. She started having fever and vaginal bleeding. The family members thought she was having the second menstrual cycle and showed her to a shaman. Seeing no improvement in her health, the family took her to Mechi Medical Hospital. After the medical examination, when doctors told that she might have been raped. Then only Manisha started to talk about what had happened. The family members tried to settle the situation within the family; however, Women Human Rights Defenders took the case to court. The case is currently under investigation. Manisha has been living in WOREC's safe house. Source: Anbeshi, A Year Book on Violence Against Women, 2012 Demands Government of Nepal should immediately fulfill due diligence on VAW by ensuring the followings: Strengthening implementation of legal and policy frameworks and accountability • Ensure 33% of women's participation at all levels of decision making as mandated by Interim Constitution. • Establishment of fast track courts for speedy judgment in regard to VAW cases. • Women's right to register FIR immediately after the incidence. • Effective, immediate and quality support to survivors by amending present difficult, discriminatory and complicated policies on safe homes, one stop crisis centers and other inadequate support guidelines. • Immediately review migration and labor policies to ensure women's right to mobility and work in and outside the country informal and formal areas of work. • Ensure women's equal right to citizenship. • Mandate protection and support services andprevention measures; and cover the prosecution and punishment of perpetrators to end impunity • Ensure that in conflict, post- conflict, and transitional settings, the prevention and response to all forms of violence against women and 3
  4. 4. girls, including sexual violence, are adequately addressed. • Take measures to ensure universal access to multi-sector services and responses for all women and girls subjected to violence, including adolescent girls, those living in rural areas and urban slums and those who suffer multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination such women and girls with disabilities, women and girls living with HIV, widows, and indigenous and migrant women and girls; and establish benchmarks and timelines towards this end. Educational awareness on VAW • Develop educational programs such as comprehensive evidence-based sexuality education that promote and build skills for respectful relationships based on gender equality and human rights, at all levels of formal and non- formaleducationwiththeinvolvement of adolescents, youth, parents and communities. • Create mechanism for psychosocial counseling at all level (V.D.C, District and National). Sensitization Media • As recommended by CEDAW, there is a need to initiate media campaign to establish positive image of women, change existing harmful socio-cultural beliefs and practices and to inform that VAW is a crime and it is a worse form of human rights. • Encourage the media to develop self- regulatory guidelines that promote gender-sensitive reporting of violence against women and girls. Addressing structural causes and risk factors to prevent violence against women and girls • Increase efforts to eliminate discrimination against women and girls and ensure women’s equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms. • Establish awareness-raising campaigns through different means of communication which target the general public, young people and men andboys,addressthestructuralcauses of all forms of violence against women and girls, promote zero tolerance for such violence and remove the stigma of being a victim of violence. • Increase women’s and girls’ safety from violence and harassment in public spaces through awareness- raising and the involvement of local communities, enhancing crime prevention, and improved urban planning, infrastructures and public transport. 4 WOREC Nepal PO Box 13233, Kathmandu, Nepal Tel: (977)-1-2123124; (977)-1-5006373. Fax: (977)-1-5006271, Email: ics@worecnepal.org, Web: www.worecnepal.org CP-2_3-2013

×