New Delhi: Sixty per cent of Indian men admit acting violently against their wife or partner at some point in their lives while 52 per cent of women admit having faced some form of violence during their lifetime, says a UN report.
The highest reports of violence came from Odisha and Uttar Pradesh, said the report, with more than 70 per cent of men in these regions admitting to being abusive towards their wives and partners.
For years, Rashmi Anand chose to suffer broken dreams and broken bones rather than face a broken marriage. "I concealed every bit of violence that came to me, I didn't even tell my parents. Nobody knew, I used to wear full sleeves," said Rashmi. Only when Rashmi saw her son developing a learning disability because of the violence was when she decided to stand up for herself.
Remembering the incident Rashmi said, "I could not see my son deteriorate like that." Today, an empowered Rashmi counsels hundreds of other domestic violence victims like her.
Rashmi's case is not an isolated one. She is among millions of Indian women who face domestic violence. Its not unique to India, but what is different here is a culture of silence that still surrounds it.
Out of the 5 crore Indian married women who face domestic violence in India, only 0.1 per cent actually report against the abuse.
While talking about crime against women, Woman activist Ranjana Kumari said, "Despite stringent laws against domestic violence and dowry, women continue to suffer. So what is the way forward?"
Unless there is total equality between the genders our home will remain 'the most dangerous place' for many Indian women. It is a desperate situation and we need to wake up and change the dark unspoken reality that has seeped into every household.