Dr. Sandeep Kaur
Assistant Professor In Punjabi
Lovely Professional University, Punjab, India.
Domestic Violence in India is a large communal problem, which is seen as a private and domestic problem, and is offered as a communal accountability rather than a complaint and crime. Despite the Domestic Violence Act, the extensive sensation of Domestic Violence through India goes unreported. It seems vital to recognize the women’s perspective as well. In the contemporary world, inspecting the domestic violence in the leading democracy of the world seems commendable for the betterment of half of its citizens.
Keywords: Violence, domestic, communal, harassment, sexual abuse, psychological violence, physical aggression
“Aristotle deemed the domination of the male over the female, in our organization of family, to be natural and necessary. He believed that head of households is unmistakably man who rules it, woman may be said to be an inferior to man.”1 The Hindu sage Manu, condemned woman to eternal bondage. “In Rome, husband had absolutely control over their wives and treated them as a slave.”2 Violence against women is not limited to the traditional form of beating, raping or murdering. New modes of victimization are constantly emerging. Violence starts from birth and continues over the life cycle. There are serval forms of violence that constitutes a violence of women’s right to live with dignity and self-respect. These include rape, incest, domestic violence, widow immolation, female feticide and infanticide, trafficking in women, sexual harassment, molestation, eve teasing, witch-hunting, dowry deaths, honor killings, female genital mutilation, the increasing instances of stripping and parading of women and so on. The list is endless. “Total types of refinement on surroundings of masculinity kind unrest.”3
Domestic Violence: Some Statistics
For the last two centuries, gender has shaped both the legal and cultural landscapes of all countries. “Gender fairness is a worldwide anxiety and seeing its standing settlement on the Exclusion of all sorts of Discrimination Against Women has been passed by United Nation and signed by India.”4 Although numerically equal in population women are a minority group in terms of their power and influence. Gender inequality in population and differences persists in a variety of social institutions. Some differences might at first appear minor or natural, but fact they have snowballing effects on the status of the majority of women. Domestic violence is one of them. Violence in contradiction of woman is relatively consequence of femininity relations that assumes males to be superior to female. Domestic Violence in India is a large communal problem, which is seen as a private and domestic problem, and offered as a communal accountability rather than a complaint and crime. Despite the Domestic Violence Act, the extensive sensation of Domestic Violence through India goes unreported. It seems vital to recognize the women’s perspective as well. In the contemporary world, inspecting the domestic violence in the leading democracy of the world seems commendable for the betterment of half of its citizens.
Violence against women is now known as a gradually substantial communal health problem and violation of human rights. The consequence of violence can be distressing to a woman’s generative health, physical health and mental health too. “Mostly, the common form of the violence against women is abuse by husband.”5 Husband and male members of the family are accustomed to enjoy the decision making and rule over the women in the family. Social setup of the Hindu family allows them to follow it. Therefore, violence against women is frequent phenomena in this scenario. Survey recognized as Family Health Survey III approved in 29 states throughout 2005-06, has originated that considerable quantity of marital females have been physically and sexually abused by their spouses at some time in life. Indication of Survey concludes that countrywide 37.2% of Women practiced violence. Supplementary 54 percent reflect that it is practical for a partner to exhaust his companion. “National Crime Bureau Report of 1991 exposes that a single Indian woman is neglected by her spouse in every 33 minutes.”6
“Physical structure of women and her major task of reproduction place her in a disadvantage zone. Due to weak body structure as compare to man, a woman has always been dependent on man in history as well. By taking the benefit of this platform, the man took control in multi forms over the woman. Her right of education was denied a lot in previous time period. Even, in modern era she has to run a long race. The situation in India is more serious because of socialization process of woman and girl.”7 They have been socialized in a manner that they develop a low esteem. Indian women feel that they deserve to be beaten when they do something wrong. Due to all these reasons domestic violence is increasing frequently.
“On November 7, 1967 The General Assembly approved a statement on the Removal of Discrimination Against Woman besides in direction to appliance the norm agreed forth in the Assertion, an agreement on the Abolition of Entirely Practices of Refinement Against Women was implemented by the General Assembly on December 18, 1987. The settlement approached into strength in 1981.”8 To assure women’s protection in the society, “The Domestic Violence Act has come into force in 2005.”9 Although the International Bill of Human Rights laid down a comprehensive set of rights to which all persons, including woman are entitled, additional means for protecting the human rights of woman were considered as necessary because the mere fact of their humanity has not sufficient to guarantee women to protection of their rights. The Preamble to the convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against women explains that, despite the existence of other instruments, women still don’t have equal rights with men. Discrimination against woman continues to exist in every society. Physical, sexual and psychological violence is occurring in the families. It’s a universal problem. Right of equality is a bigger issue. A culture of peace and dialogue among all the citizens should be actively promoted. The equal rights and opportunities of women must be assured. However, in modern era, women have to fight a lot to get the rights in this world. In brief it can be said that domestic violence exists because women do not have social, economic and psychological status as man in our societies.
Critical Areas of Concern
Domestic violence is a universal phenomenon and one of the most pernicious methods adopted by a patriarchal social system to keep women subordinated. Nevertheless, it has only recently been recognized as such, and attempts to conceptualize it as well as analyze its causes and types have been few. A gender power between a man and a woman is based on ideology of male superiority and female inferiority, sex stereotype roles and expectations. Therefore, it’s vital to consider all critical areas which are concerns for above said issues. Use of abusive language, beating wife are considered as masculinity. However, the consequences of domestic violence are very rude such as physical-mental pain and suffering, maiming and can be as serious causing even death. It’s not only makes women feel insecure at home, also endanger their independence, self-development and human rights. Therefore, it’s vital to consider all critical areas which are concerns for above said issues.
- Economic Inequalities
Women’s status has advanced in many countries but the gender gaps in infant mortality rates, calorie consumption, and school enrollment, and literacy level, access to health care and political participation have narrowed steadily. And all those changes have benefited the societies at large. However, in developing nations like India picture is still pity. “ According to survey recently done in the nation in 2002 has proved that poverty is leading according to classes and on the bases of gender, It is reported that scheduled caste and schedule tribes at 45% and 37% respectively are owning economic status. Females similarly look particular femininity hazards and accountabilities they attain up to 30% minor compensations then males in focal employment and 20% lesser for the comparable occupation. Women are contributing a lot in agriculture labor but their owning participant in agriculture land is just 1/3.Women are facing more exertion as compare to men such as the ratio is 457 minutes per day associated with men who work 391. A comprehensive development approach to poverty decrease with one of the central leading programmers being MGNEREGA by the Government of India.”10 The societal conditioning of men and women, the part stereotype together with community principles and customs, imprisonment to domestic limitations and tasks even while going to work exterior to era wages and incomes had made women scattered and incapable. Poverty, illiteracy, social conditioning and values make the poor women most helpless to beneath enlargement and domestic violence.
Education is a vital means to fetch any desired transformation in society, which is a recognized element through the world. This can be achieved if schools developed actual centers of education. Schooling is not only an assistance in the growth of personality of adolescent but also regulates future. “By looking at the status of primary education, it is noticed that a girls are less parity enrolled as compared to boys. Girls are sustained to be denied schooling, specifically in such arenas as science and technology; loafer rates among girls are also higher than boys.”11 Gender discrimination still continues in India and lot to more desires to do in the arena of education in India. “Female literacy rate was 54.16% and according to the male literacy rate is 82.14 while female literacy rate is 65.46 only.”12 A fluctuating civilization and a developing economy like India cannot create any headway, if learning which is one of the imperative mediators affecting the standards of ethics and philosophy, remains in the hands of conformists who contribute to a disjointed view of the country’s and the realm tradition. The transformation among the positions of men and women in the culture will not diminish; leave alone disappear, as long as there are variances among the education level of men and women.
- Poor Physical Condition
Numerous factors are working behind the poor health of woman in Indian society. It includes genetic metamorphoses, and communal circumstances, discrimination and absence of access to and inadequate well being care hubs and other facilities. Women do not have proper shelter, a big number of populations are surviving without houses, and they are living in slums under poor physical conditions. Furthermore, unavailability of good hygienic food, safe water carriage is a hazard to women health. Rate of unsuccessful reproductive health is still very high. In India, there is a strong correlation among literacy and women’s health. “The education level and place of residence has direct role in morbidity and mortality of women folk. Women in most parts of India have closely spaced births that also increase the health risk for the mothers.”13 Poor health has consequences not only for womankind but correspondingly their families. Females in poor well-being are supplementary expected to give birth to stumpy weight infants. They moreover are fewer likely to be able to afford sustenance and acceptable care for their families.
- Impact of Violence
Violence against women has been recognized by the international community as a most fundamental violence of women’s rights. The impact on women is manifold extending into all aspects of her life, physical, psychological and sexual. Not only does it cause physical injury which may lead to loss of life or limb, but equally impacts the mental health of women. Beyond the personal impact on specific women, the community as a whole suffers. Actually, categorizing males and females into social roles creates binaries, in which individual feel they have to be at one end of a linear spectrum and must identify themselves as man or woman. Globally, communities interpret biological differences between man and woman to create a set of social expectations that define the behavior that are appropriate for men and women and determine women’s and men’s different access to rights, resources, and power in society. Although the specific nature and degree of these differences vary from one society to next, they typically favor men, creating an imbalance in power and gender inequalities. In January 2011, the Global Men and Gender Likeness Survey (IMAGES) Survey defined that 24% of Indian men had devoted sexual violence at some point throughout their lives.”14 Honour killing is also an important factor to discuss. Indian society is suffering a lot with this issue. Many murders took place due to this cause only. It’s a very violent and rude in mode.
Power Sharing and Decision Making
Women are contributing in every field of society. Even, their role in the active politics is also remarkable but despite of all these facts, they have less power for structure making. Women’s presence as diplomat or in international institutions and bodies is very minimal. They don’t fully participate in the organizations, they are supposed to participate, being a half population. Due to existing norms and practices, women are unable to compete fairly the leadership positions. Negative stereotypes contribute to such discrimination. Without women’s active participation in decision making, the goal of equality, development and peace cannot be achieved.
Literary Perspective: Literature performs realistic approach of life through creative angle. A woman is a fascinating concept for literary people. Many writers are commenting on these perspectives such as Narijan Tasneem, Dalip Kaur Tiwana, Amrita Pritam and so on. Punjabi writer Veena Verma has presented very good work regarding this. Her story book ‘Mull Di Tiwi’ is a classical work.
Despite five decades of planning, constitutional commitments, laws and legislation passed since independence, programs introduced to ameliorate the condition of women, they are still considered deprived, as the gains of development have not been shared proportionately. The deprivation is so deeply rooted in Indian social ethos that the question of women’s development has been a marginal one. Women has less power, less autonomy, more work, less money and more responsibility and sharing a small proportion of development benefits. At the same time, they shoulder primary responsibility for having and rearing children for structuring and maintaining families. They have to live at home, which is considered to be a workplace for them. The disability of women therefore arose from the fact that she was born a woman. It is vibrant that violence against women is prevalent in India. The cause is women in the nation are extremely susceptible because of pitiable value of life designated by widespread poverty and lack of learning. Now days, though women are rising high in some areas of education as well as occupations, their social condition remains the same.
- Edger, Bodenheimer, Jurisprudence, Harvard University Press, 1974, p.10
- Cobbold, Evelyn, Pilgrimage to Mecca, Source Book Press, New York, 2004, p.193
- Rao, Mamta, Offences Against Woman, in Human Rights In India: Issues and Challenges, Ed. Aftab Alam, Raj Publications, New Delhi, 2007, p.76
- Kant, Anjani (Dr.), Law Relating to Women and Children, Central Law Publication, Allahabad, 2006, p. 1
- Rao, Mamta (Dr.), Law Relating to Women and Children, Eastern Book Company, Lucknow, 2008, p.26
- Ministry of Home Affairs, National Crime Bureau, Statists Reports, retrieved from http://ncrb.gov.in/ on 23rd of Aug. 2015.
- Myneni, S.R. (Dr.), Women and Law, Asia Law House, Hyderabad, 2002
- Kant, Anjani (Dr.), Law Relating to Women and Children, Central Law Publication, Allahabad, 2006, p. 3
- Ministry of Law and Justice, The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, retrieved from http://wcd.nic.in on 23rd of Aug. 2015.
10.Homles, Rebecca, Nidhi Sadana and Saswatee Rath, Gendered risks, poverty and vulnerability in India case study of the Indian Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act( Madhya Pradesh),2010 retrieved from http://www.odi.org/sites/odi.org.uk/files/odi-assets/publications-opinion-files/6254.pdf on 26th of Aug.2015.
- Rao, Mamta (Dr.), Law Relating to Women and Children, Eastern Book Company, Lucknow, 2008, p.44
- Kumar, J. & Sangeeta, Status of Women Education in India, retrieved from http://www.confabjournals.com/confabjournals/images/6520138351219.pdf on 27th of Aug.2015.
- Kushwah, Vandana, The Health Status of Women in India, retrieved from http://aelsindia.com on 27 th of Aug. 2015.
- Ministry of Home Affairs, National Crime Bureau, Statists Reports, retrieved from http://ncrb.gov.in/ on 23rd of Aug. 2015.