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Friday, March 18, 2011

DU की अध्यापिका के साथ छेड़-छाड़ और यौन उत्पीडन

Press Release, New Delhi, March 19


DU की अध्यापिका के साथ छेड़-छाड़ और यौन उत्पीडन, दिल्ली पुलिस का दोषियों के प्रति नरम रवैया
    
दिल्ली विश्वविद्यालय के अध्यापिका के साथ होली से दो दिन पहले Model Town में छेड़-छाड़ और यौन उत्पीडन की घटना हुई है. करीब 12 लड़कों ने इस महिला के साथ अभद्र गालियाँ दी, और 'तेरे साथ आज यहीं हैप्पी होली करेंगे' कहकर यौन हिंसा की धमकी भी दी. महिला के प्रतिरोध करने पर उनपर हाथ भी उठाया. 
  
दिल्ली पुलिस द्वारा दोषियों के प्रति नरम रवैय्या रहा और मामले को रफा दफा कराने की पूरी कोशिश की और महिला को हतोत्साहित किया. घटना स्थल पर पुलिस की गाडी 25 मिनट के बाद पहुंची. शीला दीक्षित का कहना था की दिल्ली के नागरिक महिला उत्पीडन के खिलाफ आवाज़ नहीं उठाते. पर इस घटना में जब दिल्ली पुलिस देर सवेर मौके पर पहुंची तब पुलिस ने सबसे पहले महिला की मदद में पहुंचे मित्रों को ही गिरफ्तार करने की कोशिश की. वजह पूछे जाने पर उन्होंने महिला से कहा की 'आपने उन लड़कों पर हाथ क्यों उठाया?' PCR van तो 3 बार फ़ोन करने के बाद भी 25 मिनट बाद पहुंची, अगर उस महिला के मित्र समय पर न पहुंचे होते तब तो मामला और भी ज्यादा गंभीर हो सकता था. लेकिन तब भी पुलिस उन्ही मित्रों पर कार्यवाही करने पर उतारू थी और यौन उत्पीडकों को पूरी तरह से खुला छोड़ रही थी.    

जब तक महिला ने DCP को फ़ोन नहीं किया तब तक दोषियों की गिरफ़्तारी नहीं हुई बल्कि पुलिस महिला के साथ वालों को ही प्रताड़ित करती रही. 

FIR दर्ज कराने में करीब 8 घंटे लग गए. उस दौरान महिला पर लगातार दबाव बनाया गया की वो FIR दर्ज न करें. यहाँ तक की थाने के अन्दर ACP (जो खुद महिला हैं) ने एक बुजुर्ग आदमी को खुद आमंत्रित किया और अपने 'गुरु' के रूप में परिचय दिया; यह सज्जन एक कोचिंग संस्था में अध्यापक हैं, और उन्होंने ACP के सामने ही पीड़ित महिला को समझाया की 'ऐसा तो होता रहता है, बच्चों की career मत बर्बाद करिए.' मध्य रात्रि में जाकर FIR दर्ज हुई. पर दोषियों को तुरंत ही बेल पर छोड़ दिया गया. अब वे होली में और भी महिलाओं के साथ छेद छाड़ और उत्पीडन करने के लिए सडकों पर आज़ाद घूम रहे हैं.   

शहर में हर जगह होर्डिंग और विज्ञापन लगे हैं जिसमे दिल्ली पुलिस महिलाओं को उत्पीडन के खिलाफ complaint दर्ज करने के लिए प्रोत्साहित कर रही है और आश्वासन दे रही है की त्वरित कार्यवाही होगी. पुलिस के रवैये के बारे में सच्चाई क्या है यह इस मामले से साफ हो गया है. यह महिला अध्यापिका तो तमाम दबाव के बावजूद डटी रही और पीछे नहीं हटी. पर क्या कोई भी आम महिला पुलिस को फ़ोन लगाएगी, जब उसे पता है की पुलिस के आने तक शायद उत्पिदकों को हमला करने का पर्याप्त समय मिलेगा? जब पुलिस के मौके पर पहुँचने पर उसकी मदद में आये लोगों को ही प्रताड़ित किया जायेगा? जब FIR दर्ज करने में 8 घंटे लग जायेंगे और मध्य रात्रि तक थाने के चक्कर काटने होंगे? जब खुद पुलिस उसे हतोत्साहित कैगी और सलाह देगी की मामला वापस ले लो? जब FIR दर्ज होने के बाद भी उत्पिदकों को सडकों पर और महिलाओं को आतंकित करने के लिए खुला छोड़ दिया जायेगा? 

दिल्ली पुलिस के महिला विरोधी रवैय्ये के खिलाफ (जिससे महिला उत्पिदकों का मनोबल बढ रहा है) AISA और AIPWA (अखिल भारतीय प्रगतिशील महिला ऐसोसिएशन) जल्द ही विश्वविद्यालय परिसर और उसके आस पास प्रदर्शन करेंगे. उत्पीडित महिला अध्यापक ने दिल्ली वि वि के VC और प्रोक्टर को सूचित किया है, और VC ने थाने को दोषियों पर कार्यवाही करने के मांग करते हुए चिट्ठी भेजा है.

Woman Teacher of DU Molested by 'Holi-gans'
Delhi Police Protects Perpetrators, Discourages Complainant     

On the eve of Holi, a young woman teacher of a Delhi university college was molested, abused and threatened by a group of around a dozen boys in Model Town area. But the PCR van arrived on the scene after full 25 minutes, and the policemen tried to arrest the woman teacher's friends who had come to her aid rather than act against the molesters! Not only that, police authorities tried to pressurise the teacher to drop her complaint and avoid filing an FIR! Only after hours of determined counter-pressure could she succeed in getting an FIR filed, but the 6 molesters who had been arrested were released on bail almost immediately, and will roam free to molest other women during Holi.          

Following the recent incident of shooting of a DU woman student, Delhi is full of hoardings and ads encouraging Delhi women to file complaints in case of sexual harassment, and assuring of Delhi Police's prompt support and action against the perpetrators. This incident has called the bluff of these assurances.

1) At 5.30 in the evening, the woman teacher had called the police when she was pelted with water balloons by the gang of boys from the third floor, and subjected to obscene abuse. The PCR van made an appearance after nearly half an hour. Meanwhile the molesters threatened the woman with sexual violence, saying 'Ham tere saath aaj yahin happy Holi kar denge,' and hit her. Had her friends and some students not joined her in response to her phone call, she could have been badly injured.

2) When the PCR van arrived, the first thing the police did was to pick up one of the woman teachers' friends who had come to her rescue. When confronted, he told the woman, "You are at fault because you raised your hand against the boys, we'll teach you a lesson for taking the law into your own hands." Shiela Dixit is quick to berate Delhi's 'civil society' for turning a blind eye to violence on women. But when 'civil society' does come forward to help, or when the woman defends herself, the police itself accuses and arrests them!

3) No action was taken against the molesters till the complainant made a phone call to the DCP North West Delhi. On the DCP's directions, the SHO, Mukherjee Nagar arrived and arrested 6 of the molesters.

3) At the office of the ACP, Model Town, the complainant made her complaint and identified the perpetrators and was then sent to the Mukherjee Nagar thana to file the FIR. By this time it was late night, and parents of some of the molesters had come and were pressurising the police and complainant to withdraw the complaint. Instead of filing the FIR promptly, the police was giving full space to all these parties to persuade the complainant to back out. At the Mukherjee Nagar thana, the ACP herself made another appearance and introduced a strange man to the complainant, saying he was a teacher in the Patanjali Coaching Institute and her 'guru.' In the thana, in the presence of the ACP and obviously with her blessing, this man (who was completely unrelated to the case in any way) began persuading the complainant to forgive and forget, keeping in mind the 'boys' careers.'

Meanwhile the woman teacher also got calls from a couple of teachers in DU itself, also on behalf of the molesters, asking her to drop the complaint.

Eventually, the FIR could be filed at around midnight only because the woman complainant displayed extraordinary courage and firmness and refused to be dissuaded or discouraged. 

The episode illustrates what an ordinary woman has to face when she dares to complain of sexual harassment in the capital city. Which woman will dare call the police for help when she knows that the PCR van will come late to held, and then may end up supporting her molesters and harassing those who have come to her rescue? How many women will be able to spend 6-8 hours till late night in a thana, surrounded by police officials and other authority figures dissuading her from filing an FIR? Will she not feel her effort to be futile if at the end the molesters do not even spend a night in jail, and will instead be free to spend Holi molesting more women?!      

All India Progressive Women's Association (AIPWA) and All India Students' Association (AISA) demand that the Delhi CM and the Home Minister answer for this state of affairs, and will plan a protest in the University and adjoining areas in the near future, against the Delhi Police which is emboldening molesters. The woman teacher has also notified the DU VC office and Proctor's office, and the VC's office has written to the SHO of the Mukherjee Nagar Thana asking for action to be taken against the culprits. 

Saturday, March 12, 2011

हिरासत में मनाया अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस

उत्तर प्रदेश में महिलाओं ने पुलिस हिरासत में मनाया अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस 
देवरिया और पीलीभीत में ऐपवा कार्यकर्ता गिरफ्तार की गईं

उत्तर प्रदेश में अखिल भारतीय प्रगतिशील महिला एसोसिएशन (ऐपवा) की सैकड़ों कार्यकर्ता आठ मार्च को अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस के मौके पर गिरफ्तार कर ली गईं और उन्होंने पुलिस हिरासत में ही महिला दिवस मनाया।

देवरिया और पीलीभीत में महिलाओं को अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस मनाने से रोका गया और जुलूस निकालने पर गिरफ्तार कर लिया गया। जबकि लखीमपुर खीरी में मार्च निकालने के लिए महिलाओं को पुलिस से संघर्ष करना पड़ा।

पीलीभीत में गिरफ्तार ऐपवा की कार्यकर्ताओं पर पुलिस ने आईपीसी की 341, 342, 353 आदि कई धाराओं में फर्जी मुकदमे कायम कर दिये और माले की राज्य स्थायी (स्टैन्डिंग) समिति के सदस्य अफरोज आलम की पिटायी की। महिला कार्यकर्ताओं को पंद्रह-पंद्रह हजार की जमानतें देने के लिए कहा गया। तीन दिन के भीतर जमानतें नहीं भरने पर महिलाओं को जेल जाने को तैयार रहने को कहा गया है।

भाकपा (माले) और ऐपवा ने महिलाओं की गिरफ्तारी और माले नेता को पीटने की कड़ी निंदा की है। पार्टी ने इन घटनाओं पर प्रमुख गृह सचिव को पत्र भेज कर कड़ा विरोध दर्ज कराया है। महिलाओं पर से फर्जी केस हटाने और दोषी पुलिसकर्मियों के खिलाफ कार्रवाई करने की मांग की है। पार्टी ने एक बयान जारी कर कहा कि मुख्यमंत्री मायावती के राज में गुंडे, बलात्कारी और अपराधी बाहर हैं, जबकि महिलाओं को पुलिस हिरासत में अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस मनाना पड़ रहा है। खौफ खायीं, घबरायीं मुख्यमंत्री को महिलाओं से भी कानून-व्यवस्था को खतरा लग रहा है। पार्टी ने कहा कि पीलीभीत में पुलिस और प्रशासन की दमनात्मक कार्रवाइयां पूर्वाग्रह से ग्रसित हैं और चेतावनी दी है कि दोषियों के खिलाफ कार्रवाई न होने पर पार्टी आंदोलन तेज करेगी।

देवरिया में ऐपवा प्रदेश सचिव प्रेमलता पाण्डेय के नेतृत्व में सैकड़ों महिलाएं जुलूस निकालते हुए गिरफ्तार कर ली गयीं और पुलिस लाइन भेज दी गईं। इसी तरह, पीलीभीत में ऐपवा नेता व जिला पंचायत सदस्य रमा गैरोला के नेतृत्व में मार्च निकाल रहीं दर्जनों महिलाओं को हिरासत में लेकर पुलिस लाइन भेज दिया गया। लखीमपुर खीरी में माले की केंद्रीय समिति सदस्य कृष्णा अधिकारी और ऐपवा प्रदेश अध्यक्ष विद्या रजवार के नेतृत्व में दो सौ से ऊपर महिलाओं ने पुलिस से जूझते हुए रेलवे स्टेशन से विलोबी मेमोरियल हाॅल तक जुलूस निकाला, जहां महिला दिवस के मौके पर ही ऐपवा का जिला सम्मेलन संपन्न हुआ।

इसके अलावा, प्रदेश में अन्य जगहों पर भी ऐपवा की ओर से अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस पर कार्यक्रम हुए। बनारस और सीतापुर शहर में ऐपवा ने मार्च निकाला। चंदौली जिले में तीन केंद्रों - नौगढ़, मुगलसराय व नियमताबाद में, मिर्जापुर जिले के पटेहरा में, गाजीपुर जिले के सैदपुर में महिलाओं ने सभा कर महिला दिवस मनाया, जबकि कानपुर में इस मौके पर ऐपवा का धरना हुआ। 

Women in the Middle East movements


For reflection:
The Middle East feminist revolution
Women are not merely joining protests to topple dictators, they are at the centre of demanding social change. [Naomi Wolf, 04 Mar 2011 17:23 GMT] 
Women supporting women inevitably leads to women supporting revolution. In Tunisia and Tahrir Square, women were at the front and centre of organising and leading protests, demanding social change. [GALLO/GETTY]

Among the most prevalent Western stereotypes about Muslim countries are those concerning Muslim women: doe-eyed, veiled, and submissive, exotically silent, gauzy inhabitants of imagined harems, closeted behind rigid gender roles. So where were these women in Tunisia and Egypt?

In both countries, women protesters were nothing like the Western stereotype: they were front and centre, in news clips and on Facebook forums, and even in the leadership. In Egypt's Tahrir Square, women volunteers, some accompanied by children, worked steadily to support the protests – helping with security, communications, and shelter. Many commentators credited the great numbers of women and children with the remarkable overall peacefulness of the protesters in the face of grave provocations.

Other citizen reporters in Tahrir Square – and virtually anyone with a cell phone could become one – noted that the masses of women involved in the protests were demographically inclusive. Many wore headscarves and other signs of religious conservatism, while others reveled in the freedom to kiss a friend or smoke a cigarette in public.

Supporters, leaders

But women were not serving only as support workers, the habitual role to which they are relegated in protest movements, from those of the 1960s to the recent student riots in the United Kingdom. Egyptian women also organised, strategised, and reported the events. Bloggers such as Leil Zahra Mortada took grave risks to keep the world informed daily of the scene in Tahrir Square and elsewhere.

The role of women in the great upheaval in the Middle East has been woefully under-analysed. Women in Egypt did not just "join" the protests – they were a leading force behind the cultural evolution that made the protests inevitable. And what is true for Egypt is true, to a greater and lesser extent, throughout the Arab world. When women change, everything changes - and women in the Muslim world are changing radically.
The greatest shift is educational. Two generations ago, only a small minority of the daughters of the elite received a university education. Today, women account for more than half of the students at Egyptian universities. They are being trained to use power in ways that their grandmothers could scarcely have imagined: publishing newspapers - as Sanaa el Seif did, in defiance of a government order to cease operating; campaigning for student leadership posts; fundraising for student organisations; and running meetings.

Indeed, a substantial minority of young women in Egypt and other Arab countries have now spent their formative years thinking critically in mixed-gender environments, and even publicly challenging male professors in the classroom. It is far easier to tyrannise a population when half are poorly educated and trained to be submissive. But, as Westerners should know from their own historical experience, once you educate women, democratic agitation is likely to accompany the massive cultural shift that follows.
The nature of social media, too, has helped turn women into protest leaders. Having taught leadership skills to women for more than a decade, I know how difficult it is to get them to stand up and speak out in a hierarchical organisational structure. Likewise, women tend to avoid the figurehead status that traditional protest has in the past imposed on certain activists – almost invariably a hotheaded young man with a megaphone.

Projection of power

In such contexts – with a stage, a spotlight, and a spokesperson – women often shy away from leadership roles. But social media, through the very nature of the technology, have changed what leadership looks and feels like today. Facebook mimics the way many women choose to experience social reality, with connections between people just as important as individual dominance or control, if not more so.

You can be a powerful leader on Facebook just by creating a really big "us". Or you can stay the same size, conceptually, as everyone else on your page – you don't have to assert your dominance or authority. The structure of Facebook's interface creates what brick-and-mortar institutions - despite 30 years of feminist pressure - have failed to provide: a context in which women's ability to forge a powerful "us" and engage in a leadership of service can advance the cause of freedom and justice worldwide.

Of course, Facebook cannot reduce the risks of protest. But, however violent the immediate future in the Middle East may be, the historical record of what happens when educated women participate in freedom movements suggests that those in the region who would like to maintain iron-fisted rule are finished.
Just when France began its rebellion in 1789, Mary Wollstonecraft, who had been caught up in witnessing it, wrote her manifesto for women's liberation. After educated women in America helped fight for the abolition of slavery, they put female suffrage on the agenda. After they were told in the 1960s that "the position of women in the movement is prone", they generated "second wave" feminism – a movement born of women's new skills and old frustrations.

Time and again, once women have fought the other battles for the freedom of their day, they have moved on to advocate for their own rights. And, since feminism is simply a logical extension of democracy, the Middle East's despots are facing a situation in which it will be almost impossible to force these awakened women to stop their fight for freedom – their own and that of their communities.

Naomi Wolf is a political activist and social critic whose most recent book is Give Me Liberty: A Handbook for American Revolutionaries.

This article was first published by Project Syndicate
Source: Al Jazeera

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Indian men lead in sexual violence, worst on gender equality: Study

For reflection...
 Indian men lead in sexual violence, worst on gender equality: Study

March 9, 2011 by Neha Bhayana, TNN Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Mar 7, 2011, NEW DELHI: Nearly one in four Indian men has committed sexual violence at some point in their lives and one in five has admittedly forced his wife or partner to have sex. The findings of a recent International Men and Gender Equality Survey reflects a new low for Indian men. Only 2% Brazilian males and less than 9% of men in Chile, Croatia, Mexico and Rwanda were found to have indulged in sexual violence.


The survey was conducted in six developing countries across four continents to map attitudes and practices related to gender equality. Researchers from the International Centre for Research on Women ( ICRW in US and India) and Instituto Promundo in Brazil, who led the survey, interviewed more than 8,000 men and 3,500 women, aged 18 to 59, from these countries.

Indians, who are known to excel in competitive examinations globally, were ranked last on the 'gender equitable men' scale, given that only 17% of men here qualified to the 'highly equitable' (gender-just) category. The percentage was the lowest for this category among the six countries. On sexual violence, 24% said they had committed some form of it in their lives.

While Croatia topped the test, with 82% 'gender-just' men, more than 50% men in Brazil, Chile, and Mexico made the grade. Rwanda, which is among the least developed nations in the world, in fact, fared better than India, with 30% males qualifying as 'highly equitable'.

Rwanda, however, joined India with highest rate of domestic violence, with 38% men admitting they had physically abused their partners. Worse, more than 65% Indian men also believed that women should tolerate violence to keep the family together and that women sometimes deserved to be beaten.
And although Indian men were the most sexually and physically violent at home, they were not involved in violent or criminal behaviour outside. Only 4% Indian men had participated in robbery and 7% had been involved in fights with weapons, compared to 36% men in Croatia and 22% men in Brazil.

The findings, released in Washington last month, reiterated that although India may be on its way to becoming the world's fastest developing economy, it figures at the bottom of the pile when it comes to gender equality. "Indian men are far more traditional, to put it mildly. Even young, educated men are not changing as rapidly as women. They are still living in the old ages," said Ravi Verma, director of ICRW's Asia regional office in Delhi.

Verma added that they would soon present the survey findings to the ministry of women and child development and other policy-makers to urge them to make appropriate changes in policies and programmes to better foster gender equality.

In the survey, which found Indian men to be the worst offenders in terms of sexual violence, more than 1,000 men from the 1,500 interviewed in India were from Delhi. The findings mirrored the high incidence of sexual assault in Delhi: the capital witnessed 489 rapes last year.

"Although the survey has focussed on violence in the privacy of homes, it reflects the situation in public places, too," said Kalpana Vishwanath, project director of the Gender Inclusive Cities project run by Jagori NGO. South Asia does fare quite poorly in terms of gender equality.

Vibhuti Patel, a women's rights activist, blamed the repression of sexuality in India for the high rate of sexual violence. "All the other countries surveyed have more sexual freedom than India. Rwanda, too, has tribal culture so people are more open and women's role in the economy is recognized," said Patel, who heads the economics department at Mumbai's SNDT University.

"In India, the age-old code of conduct has been to keep men and women separate. So women are only viewed as sex objects," she added.
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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

33 प्रतिशत आरक्षण बिल पास करो ! - एपवा


अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस शताब्दी

यूपीए सरकार 33 प्रतिशत आरक्षण बिल को तत्काल पारित करे !

यौन उत्पीड़न व यौन हिंसा के विरुद्ध कानून बनाने में देरी क्यों? यौन उत्पीड़न के खिलाफ प्रस्तावित विधेयक से घरेलू कामगार महिलाओं को क्यों बाहर रखा गया है? और, इस विधेयक में ‘झूठी शिकायतों’ पर सजा जैसे महिला विरोधी प्रावधन क्यों हैं? बजट में कारपोरेट घरानों के लिए अरबों रुपयों की छूट लेकिन महिलाओं के पोषण और मातृ-स्वास्थ्य के लिए सरकार के पास पैसे की कमी क्यों?

अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस के 100 वर्ष पूरे होने के अवसर पर दिल्ली में संसद मार्ग पर मजदूर महिलाओं और  छात्राओं समेत विभिन्न पेशों से जुड़ी महिलाओं ने प्रदर्शन व सभा का आयोजन किया। रंगीन बैनरों और नारे लिखी तख्तियों से सजे इस मार्च में महिलाओं ने गैर-बराबरी, उनके ऊपर होने वाली हिंसा और दमन के विरोध में नारे लगा कर अपने संघर्षों को आगे बढ़ाने का संकल्प लिया और अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला मुक्ति आंदोलन से अपनी एकजुटता जाहिर की। महिलाओं ने इस बात को याद किया कि अब से 100 साल पहले दुनिया के कई देशों की महिला मजदूरों ने कार्यस्थल पर अपने हकों, बराबरी और मताधिकार की मांग करते हुए क्रांतिकारी वाम संगठनों के बैनर तले 1911 में अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस मनाने की शुरूआत की थी।

पीलीभीत में महिलाओं को 8 मार्च मनाने पर पुलिस ने यह कहकर गिरफ्तार किया की यहाँ महिला दिवस मनाना मना है! 14 महिलाओं को गिरफ्तार किये जाने के बाद बताया गया की 15.15000 रु का ज़मानतदार न होने पर उन्हें जेल भेज दिया जायेगा. देवरिया में भी इसी तरह महिला दिवस मानाने वाली महिलाओं को गिरफ्तार किया गया. महिला मुख्यमंत्री के राज में जहाँ हर दिन महिलाओं पर हिंसा के वारदात होते हैं, महिलाओं को महिला दिवस मनाने के लिए गिरफ्तार किया जा रहा है! भारत में आज भी कामगार महिलाओं को कार्यस्थल पर भेदभाव, शोषण और असुरक्षा के बीच रहना पड़ रहा है। सरकार खुद ही महिला कामगारों का शोषण कर रही है, और दुगना काम तक करवाया जाता है। घरेलू कामगारों का काम के वक्त मूलभूत मानवाधिकारों से भी वंचित रखा जाता है - यहां तक कि घरों व कालोनियों में काम के वक्त वे आवश्यकता होने पर शौचालय भी नहीं जा सकतीं। प्रायः ही उनके साथ क्रूरता, गाली-गलौज और यौन उत्पीड़न की घटनायें होती रहती हैं, फिर भी कार्यस्थल पर यौन उत्पीड़न से संबंध्ति विधेयक से परिवार की मर्यादा बचाने के लिए उन्हें बाहर रखा गया है। किसी अमीर व्यक्ति का घर एक गरीब महिला का कार्यस्थल होता है।

‘8 प्रतिशत विकास दर’ के तमाम दावों के बावजूद यह बड़े शर्म की बात है कि प्रसव के समय मौत की सर्वाधिक दर वाले पांच देशों में एक भारत भी है, और इसी देश में आधी से अधिक युवितयां कुपोषण की शिकार हैं और हजारों महिलाओं की मौत एनीमिया से हो जाती है। यूपीए सरकार के बजट में, जिसमें  कारपोरेट घरानों के लिए 5 लाख करोड़ रुपये माफ कर दिये गये, दावा किया गया है कि महिलाओं के आहार और स्वास्थ्य के लिए बनी आईसीडीएस योजना का कवरेज बढ़ाने के लिए उसके पास धन ही नहीं है! इस कार्यक्रम के तहत केवल आंगनबाड़ी मजदूरों की मजदूरी रु. 3000 की गयी है लेकिन वह अब भी न्यूनतम मजदूरी की दर से काफी कम है।

आखिर क्यों सरकार 33 प्रतिशत आरक्षण बिल पारित करने और कार्यस्थल पर यौन उत्पीड़न व यौन हमलों के खिलापफ कानून बनाने से पीछे हट रही है? यौन उत्पीड़न विरोधी विधेयक में ‘झूठी शिकायत’ की धरा क्यों जोड़ी गयी है? देश में सभी हिस्सों में अपना जीवन साथी चुनने के ‘अपराध’ में महिलाओं की हत्यायें हो रही हैं पिफर भी सरकार इज्जत के नाम में हो रहे अपराधों के लिए अलग से कानून बनाने से क्यों मना कर रही है? क्यों कश्मीर, उत्तर-पूर्व, ओडिशा, छत्तीसगढ़, लालगढ़ समेत देश के तमाम हिस्सों में महिलायें सुरक्षा बलों द्वारा बलात्कार और राज्य दमन का शिकार होती हैं? 

International Women's Day - 100 Years



Why is the UPA Govt. not passing 33% Reservation Bill?

Why delay in introducing laws against Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault? 

Why does Sexual Harassment Bill exclude domestic workers and have discriminatory provisions like punishment for ‘false complaints’?

Why does the Budget have crores for corporates but dearth of funds for women’s nutrition and maternal health?


To mark 100 years of International Women's Day, women workers, students and professionals held a March and Public Meeting at Jantar Mantar (Parliament Street). The March was decorated with colourful banners and placards, and women raised slogans against discrimination, violence and oppression on women.

AIPWA observed 100 years of Women's Day all over the country, to remind that it was women workers of many countries, under the banner of revolutionary left organisations, who first began celebrating International Women's Day in 1911, demanding rights and equality at the workplace and the right to vote. 

Shockingly, in UP which has witnessed a spate of crimes against women in recent times, women were assaulted by the police at many places in a bid to stop them celebrating Women's Day! At Pilibhit, hundreds of women marched to the district headquarters to raise their demands on the occasion of Women's Day, and were greeted by a heavy police force which told them that no Women's Day events would be allowed. They were beaten up by the police, and 14 women arrested, and released only after heavy bail amounts of Rs 15000 each were imposed on each, barring which they face jail in the next few days! In Devaria too, women were arrested as they gathered to celebrate Women's Day! In a state ruled by a woman CM, women celebrating Women's Day are arrested and assaulted... 

In India in 2011, women workers still face severe discrimination, exploitation and insecurity at work. As Government cut back on jobs and fresh appointments, women workers are often faced with a doubled load. Those employed on contract or daily wagers are the worst exploited. If women raise their voice in protest, employers threaten to throw them out of the job. Domestic workers in cities are very often denied basic human rights – even the right to use the toilet in the homes and colonies in which they work. They often face immense cruelty, abuse and sexual harassment, yet the Bill on Sexual Harassment at the Workplace being proposed by the Government excludes domestic workers, in the name of the ‘sanctity of the home!’ The rich person's home is the poor woman's workplace, and domestic workers must be recognised as workers and guaranteed proper wages and rights, and justice against sexual harassment. 

All over the country, violence against women, with many MLAs in UP and Bihar involved in rape, and many gang rape and blade attacks against women in Delhi. On 8 March itself, a college student of from Delhi University was shot dead in broad daylight. Sexual harassment and cyber crimes against women are also on the rise. 

In spite of all the boasts of ‘8% growth rate’, it is shameful that India is amongst the five countries in the world with the worst maternal mortality rates, and more than half of India’s young women are malnourished and thousands of women die of anaemia. Yet the UPA Government’s Budget, which gives away Rs 5 lakh crores to corporates, claims to have no funds to increase ICDS coverage that can ensure women’s nutrition and health! The meagre increase in the ICDS program Rs 8996.64 cr to Rs 10404.68 cr, will go towards the increase in anganwadi workers’ wages to Rs 3000 – which is still less than minimum wages! 

On Women's Day women asked - Why is the Govt dragging its feet on passing the 33% Reservation Bill, and laws against Sexual Harassment at the workplace and Sexual Assault? Why does the Sexual Harassment Bill have discriminatory provisions like a clause against ‘false complaints’? Women all over the country are being killed for the ‘crime’ of choosing their own life-partners, yet why is the UPA Govt. is refusing to pass a law against ‘honour’ crimes? Why are women being subjected to rape and state repression by security forces in Kashmir, the North East, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Lalgarh and many other parts of the country? 

The photos show women at Parliament Street in Delhi on Women's Day, as well as women students Chintu, Anjali, Raj Rani and Tahiba along with other students from DU performing a play to mark Women’s Day, women at Ranchi and Kolkata holding a March on Women's Day.