Police apathetic to domestic violence: Women activists
DADELDHURA, Dec 7: While the 16-day of Activism to Eliminate Violence against Women is under way in the district, around half a dozen women victims of mental and physical violence are running from pillars to posts seeking justice.
Women in the district said getting justice for them is still a far cry as the police and administration still do not cooperate fully in cases involving injustice against women.
Kalawati Devi Bohara, 33, of Amargadhi-3 , Hardi, visited the District Police Office thrice to lodge complaint against her assaulting husband but police refused to register her complaint. Bohara said her husband has been physically assaulting her for the past ten years.
Unable to bear the torture, she along with her daugther recently left her husband and took refuge at her father´s house and reached police to lodge her complaint but she found police response disappointing. She then sought help from rights organization.
“Only after pressure from the rights organizations and local political leaders that police registered my complaint Wednesday,” she added.
Pashupati Devi Bhattarai, 40, of Amargadhi Municipality-7 has been visiting governmental and non governmental organizations asking for help to get rid from her aggressive husband, who she said has been torturing her for over two decades. Bhattarai said he would often come home drunk and beat her mercilessly.
“I endured the abuse for 22 years but his mistreatment was ever increasing. I visited several places seeking justice in the last three years, but to no avail,” said Bhattarai. The victimized women say police often take bribes and attempt to settle such cases at local level itself.
According to Mukti Samaj, an NGO working in the filed of women´s rights, six complaints of domestic violence against women have been registered in the course of the 16-day campaign. All six complaints are from Amargadhi Municipality. “If such is the situation in the urban areas, what would be happening in remote villages?” Pampha Rokka, the chairperson of the Muti Samaj questioned. “Dozens of such cases happen on daily basis but they go unreported,” she added.
According to rights activists, child marriage, drunkard husbands, polygamy, forced marriages involving huge age gap, inter-caste marriages, gambler husbands among other things are the main reasons behind increasing violence against women.
Rohit Deuba, the chairman of the District Bar Unit Dadeldhura, said women have been mutely enduring violance due to illiteracy and the lack of awareness among them about the legal provisions regarding the violence against women.
Information Officer at the District Police Office, police Inspector Mahendra Chand admitted that police give first priority to reconciliation between the couples. “It is better to create an environment for both the husband and wife to live together than to register the complaint and start action immediately,” Chand added.