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[16 Days of Activism] Patang – U.P. Takes a Stand on Violence Against Women

          16 Days of Activism is an international campaign that calls on individuals around the world to act against all forms of violence against women and girls. It’s a campaign Breakthrough Rights Advocates and the DMCGVS have taken seriously in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh. Over 16 days, events, vigils, talks and art have mobilized young people in the community to create change for the women around them.

          The thrust of these events have been focused on making violence against women unacceptable. Participants were informed that while many people routinely ignore domestic violence as a “personal matter”, violence whether physical, psychological, or sexual, is an everyday reality in the lives of many women in India – and action needed to be taken to shame the abuser. Violence occurs in many ways including restrictions on a partner from contacting their family and friends, stopping a partner from getting or keeping a job after marriage, physical harm, sexual assault, and intimidation. The effects of it can be long‐lasting, with depression and chronic health problems, low self‐esteem, lack of trust, feeling of abandonment, as common side effects. But solutions are in reach. The PWDV Act, 2005 (Protection of Women from Domestic Violence) and filing of DIR (domestic incident report) in police stations and from lawyers is a first step for those directly abused. And for each and everyone in the community, calling out against domestic violence is also important. And so, with every event, mass awareness was spread in the community about ending violence against women.

          A wall writing event in the villages of Jungle Maghi and Niyamatpur village in Block Bhathat

          A Signature Campaign

          Workshop with the community and schoolgirls

          A candlelight march through villages

          A puppet show and talk on World AIDS Day

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