Domestic Violence Amid Covid-19 Lockdown

By Mansi Rajput

Domestic abuse is a violation of basic human rights and its prevalence in pockets of the country is disconcerting – no woman should have to go through that kind of pain or suffering.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE- MEANING

“Domestic Violence against women” means any act or conduct which has potential to injure or hurt women- physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and also spiritually within the four walls of the house, however, such an act or conduct is done usually not by strangers.

LAWS PROTECT WOMEN FROM DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

India has women specified and women related legislation both constitutional and legal. Separately an act called Domestic Violence Act, 2005 specially made for the women for their protection from violence. As articles 14, 21 and 39(a) of Indian Constitution to protect the women from different violence and mainly section 304B and 498A of IPC and provisions of CrPC and Indian Evidence Act also protect the women from violence. An aggrieved woman may seek remedy under matrimonial laws like the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, the Special Marriage Act 1954, and all those laws that recognize cruelty as valid ground.

ORGANIZATIONS TO PROTECT WOMEN FROM DOMESTIC ABUSE

· AKS Foundation and Neo-Gandhian Aid Organizations India helpline

AKS Foundation provides aid to victims of domestic abuse and wants them to be survivors against all odds. The helpline is a 24-hour crisis line that was launched in 2013.

· Society for Nutrition, Education and Health Action (SNEHA)

They counsel women and provide them with moral support. There also organize regular group sessions to spread awareness in order to prevent further abuse.

· National Commission for Women Deals with the complaints received from all over the country including those relating to deprivation of rights of women and involving injustice to women takes suo motu cognizance of incidents related to commission of heinous crimes against women U/S 10 of the National Commission Act, 1990. The complaints received orally in writing or online via official website of National Commission for Women. Broadly speaking the Commission’s mandate can be divided under four heads (a) safeguard of rights of women granted by the constitution and laws,

(b) study problems faced by women in the cur-rent day and make recommendations to eradicate these problems,

(c) evaluating the status of Indian women from time to time and

(d) funding and fighting cases related to women’s rights violations

.· FIFA, WHO, and the European Commission have joined forces, to launch the #SafeHome campaign to support women and children at risk of domestic violence. The campaign is a joint response from the three institutions to the recent spikes in reports of domestic violence as stay-at-home measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 have put women and children experiencing abuse at greater risk.

· The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), adopted in 1979 by the UN General Assembly, is often described as an inter-national bill of rights for women.

CASES OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RISE IN COVID-19 PANDEMIC IN THE WORLD AT LARGE

· Domestic violence cases in India have increased since the March 24 lockdown with husbands venting their frustration on wives, who have no escape from their abusers, According to NCW data, there were 291 complaints of domestic violence (only email complaints from March 23) in March. There were 302 complaints in February and 270 in January.

· In 2020, between March 25 and May 31, 1,477 complaints of domestic violence were made by women. This 68-day period recorded more complaints than those received between March and May in the previous 10 years. say experts. – Rekha Sharma.

According to Sharma, many of the women who suffer domestic abuse don’t know how to send emails and the number might increase with the addition of the complaints receive through post. State commissions have also reported an increase in the number of domestic abuse cases.

All India Progressive Women’s Association secretary and rights activist Kavita Krishnan said vulnerable women could have moved to safer places if the government had given some warning of the lockdown.

· The World Health Organization says there has been an increase in cases of gender-based violence across the world as the fight against the corona virus pandemic continues. Six months of lockdowns to prevent the spread ofCOVID-19could lead to 31 million additional cases of domestic violence globally, the United Nations.

· Of the 22 law enforcement agencies across the United States that responded to NBC News’ request for data on domestic violence calls, 18 departments said they had seen a rise in March. Houston police received about 300 more domestic violence calls in March than they did in February, a roughly 20 percent increase. Charlotte-Mecklenburg, North Carolina, police fielded 517 additional calls about domestic violence in March compared to the same month last year, an 18 percent jump, while Phoenix police received nearly 200 more calls, an increase of nearly 6 percent.

· The financial stress alone creates a ticking time bomb for some families with a history of domestic violence,” said Steve Mueller, sheriff of Cherokee County, South Carolina, which saw a 35 percent increase in cases in March compared to February.

CONCLUSION

Domestic Violence is infringement of the basic human rights and this violence is done usually not by strangers but by their own abusive partners or may be by home members and this violence in India is protected by the Domestic Violence Act 2005 with another many laws and here above all we have seen that the crisis of Domestic Violence has become the second big crisis after the Corona virus according to the reports of NCW in India and WHO at the world level the cases have increased in this pandemic. Overall, we have no right to destroyed anybody’s life in anyway neither morally nor legally and we should try to help those who suffer from these type of violence.

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