Violence Against Women | A woman not only gives birth to a child but also handles the responsibility of the health and education etc of the child. The woman is the base of the creation of the world. There is the first and important role of the woman in the creation of the future of a civilization or society. The Woman has been an important position in Indian culture. In Indian society, people treats women as a goddess and worship them. This gets to see in the Indian festival, folk traditions, and stories. But what is the truth? The truth is the contrary. Philosophy and practice are different from each other. Under this topic, we will discuss the actual situation of women, the key factor of violence against them, forms, problems etc. in India. Violence Against Women
The nature of violence against women
It is believed that women had equal status with men in all areas of life in ancient India. An overview of the books of ancient Indian sages like Patanjali and Katyayana shows that women could have gotten an education in the early Vedic period. From the time of the Islamic invasion of the Mughal Empire began to decline in freedom and rights of women. Some scholars disagree with this approach. In older times, such practices like Shati, Johar, curtain-practice, and Devdasi had existed. on the basis of this, we can say that violence against women continues from ancient times. But at the present time, the form has changed. Today, violence against woman continues as violence, assault, rape, abduction, kidnapping, prostitution, dowry-practice, toughness, and domestic violence, in society. Violence Against Women
If we classify the nature of violence against women, it would be following-
- Domestic violence
- Violence occurs at public or working place
A. Domestic violence-
Domestic violence has been defined in section 3 of Protection of women from domestic violence Act, 20051
Section-3 . Definition of domestic violence.-For the purposes of this Act, any act, omission or commission or conduct of the respondent shall constitute domestic violence in case it –
(a) harms or injures or endangers the health, safety, life, limb or well-being, whether mental or physical, of the aggrieved person or tends to do so and includes causing physical abuse, sexual abuse, verbal and emotional abuse and economic abuse; or
(b) harasses, harms, injures or endangers the aggrieved person with a view to coerce her or any other person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any dowry or other property or valuable security; or
(c) has the effect of threatening the aggrieved person or any person related to her by any conduct mentioned in clause (a) or clause (b); or
(d) otherwise injures or causes harm, whether physical or mental, to the aggrieved person.
According to this law, domestic violence may be various types. For example-
Physical violence– Beating, slapping, kicking, gnaw, kick, hit, punch, or another kind of hurt. All these come under physical violence.
Sexual violence – rape, forced to watch pornography or other material, use the victims for others entertainment, or any other kind of sexual abuse. All these come under sexual violence.
Verbal violence or emotional violence– Denigrating, slandering, droll, insult for dowry etc. , ridicule for not giving birth of the child or son, to put barriers in education, occlude for a job, occlude going out, give pressure to marry or not marry with or without her choice, or such any other pressure. All these come under physical violence.
Economical violence– do not give expenses for food, clothing, medicines, etc. or to prohibit their use. Do not allow to go to any part of the house. Dispossess from her salary or wages, to sell jointure without asking her, non-payment of her bills etc.
The reason of Violence against women-
To understand the causes of violence against women,we should focus on the three-point which is more important for understanding the situation- First, the conditions which are caused the violence, second is Characteristics of the victim and a third is Characteristics of tyrants. After considering all these conditions we find the following reasons for violence against women.
1. Be provoked by the victim- It is also known as blaming the victim theory. Under this, it is believed that the cause of violence against women is the woman herself. The Victim-blaming theory describes the practice of holding victims partly responsible for their misfortune. It represents the faulting of individuals who have endured the suffering of crimes, hardships, or other misfortunes with either part or whole responsibility for the event. Often, victim-blaming theories rely on the premise that individuals should recognize the dangers that exist in society and therefore should take the necessary precautions to maintain a certain level of safety.2
It is the most ancient concept. Under this it is considered by criminologists, wife or women generate a situation that they should be beaten or should be the use of violence against them. In this, we analyze the causes of crime on the basis of victim’s acts instead of criminal’s acts. Thus the approach focuses on improvement in wife instead of the husband.
2. Circumstantial factors- Circumstances are most responsible for violence against women. Where the husband does not want to do violence and Wife also does not contribute directly. But generated frustration due to circumstances makes the cause violence against wife. This frustration can be for several reasons, eg to miss the job, due to economic conditions, social pressure, unemployment, sickness etc. The husband oppresses his frustration to his wife and it comes across as wife battery. If the wife will financially and socially strong then Circumstances will be different.
3. Intoxication- Currently, alcohol is considered to be the most responsible factor for domestic violence. That’s Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Karnataka, Bihar and other states women and social workers began to raise their voices against alcohol. A drunk person is not able to know what would be the result of his acts. Most crimes happen in an inebriated state. For example, the fact has come in light from the study about rape that 92% of rapes occur in the intoxicating situation. But do the offense in an intoxicated state is mostly depends on Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC). If the level of BAC is high, then physical violence would be less. However, it can not say that only the alcohol is the cause of violent behavior. Because there are many people who drink alcohol, but do not do violence. In violence against women, the use of alcohol should not be considered as a major factor but should be considered as a contributing factor.
4. Reporting Process – Currently, the main cause of domestic violence is not to be reported to the appropriate authority in spite of the violence. Complainant or victims of violence do not want to go to Neither the police nor in the courts. Because from this carries the risk of breakdown of the institution of marriage. In Indian society, especially in Hindus, there was not in any provision of divorce in the beginning. Even in Muslims society could not be broken marriage easily. The rate of the reporting process gets to see more among the lower classes. There is much less reporting of domestic violence in the Middle and upper-class families. Because It brings the risk of affecting the social reputation. The structure of the Indian society is something complicated ! Everyone is sensitive about their reputation… and reputation is like a Sensex… this, again and again, rolls down. The upper-class families take divorce instead of Reporting because they are financially more capable.
5. Sex Determination- Violence against women starts from before her birth. The woman is considered as a burden in India. Social structure and the conception of the people of India is the root cause behind this. A Father struggles from debt and economic crisis due to dowry practice in daughter’s marriage. Because not done a proper arrangement of training and education for the woman, consequently she depends on father before marriage and her husband after marriage further, she depends on her son after the husband. Due to these problems and new scientific technology or invention, the woman is killed in the embryo stage. Because of which female and male ratio in India is dissimilar. According to the census of 2011 of India, woman population is 586.47 million viz 48.5% and man population is 623.72 million viz 51.5% in 1210.19 million. The Less population of the Women also is a cause of violence against her in the democratic Because of this, only a few people come in front to raise her voice. So sex determination is a major problem of India.
Although the Indian government has declared sex determination illegal. In India, it is the law of punishment of imprisonment or fines or both on the gender checking of an embryo. Yet the reality is that the gender of the embryo is being illegally and clandestinely checked overmuch.
In addition to these biological processes the perception and thinking of the people of the country inspire sex determination. For example, generally the physical, mental, emotional variation comes naturally among female child and male child when they become teens. But Indian society starts differentiation between male and female child since birth. A male child is given More freedoms while a female child has less freedom. Most girls’ education is disengaged in the middle and married. Very few girls are gained the higher education. While much is spent on the male child’s amenity.
6. Social factors- In addition to the factors described above, which leads to the violence against women. For example –
- cultural factors-
- Gender specific behaves
- Cultural tradition of sex determination
- Family intervention in personal matters
- economic factors-
- Women’s economic dependency on men
- financially Women’s outpace than men
- Legal Factors –
- Lack of adequate and effective legal protection and remedies
- Women legally be ignorant
- The inaction of Judiciaries, lawyers, and police
- Political Factors-
- Lack of adequate representation of women in politics and the media
- Domestic violence is not to be taken seriously
B. Violence occurs at public or working place-
The right to earn a livelihood along with a sense of the dignity of woman is violated due to sexual harassment at the workplace. The International convention which is related to the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women (CEDAW) which has also ratified by the India gives recognition of right to equality to women at work places. In this said that sexual harassment of women at the workplace will not be done. Because the environment of work is contaminated by such persecution.
sexual harassment is defined under Section 354A of the Indian Penal Code-
A man committing any of the following acts- physical contact and advances involving unwelcome and explicit sexual overtures; or a demand or request for sexual favours; or showing pornography against the will of a woman; or making sexually coloured remarks, shall be guilty of the offence of sexual harassment.3
Provided Human rights under CEDAW to the women is recognized by the Indian Constitution as fundamental rights in part third of the constitution. And has an obligation on the judiciary to implement these fundamental rights under Article 32. Supreme Court has issued guidelines for the effective enforcement of fundamental rights of equality between men and women, and Prevent sexual harassment of women at a workplace. Supreme Court has determined guidelines and criteria in Vishakha case4 for compliance in all workplaces or institutions. the guidelines and criteria mentioned in the judgment of Supreme Court Under Article 141 of the Constitution are considered as a law. The National Women Commission created a workplace code of conduct as directed by the Supreme Court and sent to all government officials and departments.
- Types of violence against women in the workplace-
- Violence by the client or customer activities
- violence due to criminal activities
- violence by co-worker or manager
- Personel relationship
- Nature of Job
- culture, tradition and environmental cause of workplace