Awareness on domestic violence act is low, say NGOsMarch 31st, 2010 - 9:46 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, March 31 (IANS) Despite the domestic violence act being in place for the past three years, its effectiveness has been limited as awareness about the legislation is low, civil society organisations said at a seminar here Wednesday.
One of the main reasons for this was media’s ignorance over the intricacies of the act, said speakers at the national consultation on the domestic violence act.
“It has been noted that one of the most important stakeholders, the media, is not fully aware of the intricacies of the domestic violence act. As a result, awareness about the act is low and implementation is limited,” said Girija Vyas, chairperson of the National Commission for Women.
“Police and protection officers, who are supposed to be the first point of contact for a victim, are also not fully aware of their duties and the legal procedure that needs to be followed to provide relief,” she added.
Ranjana Kumari, director of the Centre for Social Research, an NGO which organised the seminar, said: “The ineffectiveness of the act is largely due to the callousness of the authorities towards women, the lack of any initiative on spreading awareness on it, and the lack of sufficient budgetary allocations for ensuring the effective implementation of the act.”
The speakers welcomed the setting up of a committee to examine the rules under the act.
“The committee headed by Najma Heptullah will examine the rules in the light of the growing incidence of domestic violence and the accused taking advantage of the loopholes in the act. This is a good news,” Kumari said.
Among the other participants in the seminar were Indira Jaising of the Lawyers Collective and Chandrasheh Kumari, chairperson of the Committee on Empowerment of Women.
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Tags: authorities, budgetary allocations, callousness, chairperson, domestic violence act, empowerment, girija, indira, initiative, intricacies, lawyers, legislation, loopholes, national consultation, New Delhi, ngo, point of contact, speakers, vyas, women police