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Domestic Violence against Women in Bangladesh

Course Name: Women in South Asia: A Comparative Perspective Course No: 05

Submitted to:
Dr. Nazmunnessa Mahatab Course instructor Dept. of Women and ender studies !niversit" of Dha#a

Submitted $":
%a#iba Naznin &uda C'ass %o'' No. ()*+ MSS )nd semester

Dept. of Women and ,ender Studies !niversit" of Dha#a *( March )0(-

.ab'e of contents

Domestic violence Forms of Domestic Violence Situation of Domestic Violence in Bangladesh Dimensions of Domestic Violence Causes of Domestic Violence Existing Laws pertaining to combat Domestic Violence Interventions to combat Domestic Violence ecommendations Conclusion

Violence is not a new phenomenon in Bangladesh but has existed in our societ! since the patriarchal values too" over to rule over the social norms and functioning# It is a weapon used to maintain the une$ual power d!namics between men and women# %ith s!stematic marginali&ation of women' institutionali&ation of violence and all pervasive oppressive patriarchal values' there remains a vicious circle of victimi&ation for women# (nd contrar! to the m!ths it is often resorted to cutting across class and creed' b! males to silence' dominate and suppress the womenfol"# Violence within marriage is the most widespread violation of a human)s worth and dignit!# It is the least tal"ed about issue and further it is the least action substantiated issue# Domestic violence' especiall! wife battering' is perhaps the most widespread form of violence against women# In countries where reliable' large*scale studies on gender violence are available' more than +, per cent of women are reported to have been abused b! men with whom the! live -%orld Development of the women are reported to have been abused b! their husbands# In our countr! the ros! dream of having a loving husband disappears at the touch of grim realit!# 2he husband and in*laws -in some cases1' are biased against her' the children are sources of constant worries' and additional wor" and tension are part of her ever! da! life# She has to render various services but with no appreciation# (nd an! failure on her part in rendering these services brings about ph!sical beating or verbal abuse# She has to suffer all these in silence because she has no alternative to fall bac" upon# Being a 3good housewife4 is the onl! career sociall! acceptable to herself' her famil! and the societ! at large# 5naware of an! rights' deprived of all human considerations and under constant scrutin! of eport' %orld Ban"' .//01# 2he situation in Bangladesh is even worse where about half

her wor" performance' she lives in a house where she is considered as a stranger -if not enem!1' at least during the earl! !ears of her marriage .

Domestic violence
Domestic violence' also "nown as 6arital violence 'domestic abuse' spousal abuse' battering' famil! violence' and intimate partner violence -I7V1' is broadl! defined as a pattern of abusive behaviors b! one or both partners in an intimate relationship such as marriage' dating' famil!' or cohabitation Domestic violence' so defined' has man! forms' including ph!sical aggression or assault -hitting' "ic"ing' biting' shoving' restraining' slapping' throwing ob8ects1' or threats thereof9 sexual abuse9 emotional abuse9 controlling or domineering9 intimidation9 stal"ing9 passive:covert abuse -e#g#' neglect19 and economic deprivation# (ccording to the 6erriam*%ebster dictionar! definition' domestic violence is; <the inflicting of ph!sical in8ur! b! one famil! or household member on another9 also; a repeated or habitual pattern of such behavior# In %omen=s (id=s view domestic violence is ph!sical' sexual' ps!chological or financial violence that ta"es place within an intimate or famil!*t!pe relationship and that forms a pattern of coercive and controlling behaviour#

/orms of Domestic 0io'ence

Domestic violence is directed primaril! against women# (ccording to the given definition these include ph!sical' sexual' mental and emotional or ps!chological violence# 2hreats of violence are also included# 2he violence ma! be life threatening' s!stematic and long term# 2he range of ph!sical in8uries that women suffer or are threatened with is enormous# 2hese in8uries are often accompanied b! emotional' ps!chological and sexual abuse# 7h!sical violence is 8ust one part of domestic abuse' not necessaril! even the main part# %omen often experience several different t!pes of ph!sical attac"s and in8uries# Ph"sica' 0io'ence 2he ph!sical violence that women experience comprises man! t!pes of ph!sical attac"s and in8ur!# 7h!sical violence b! men against women ma! involve an!thing from threatening behaviour' slaps and being pushed about' through blac" e!es' bruises and bro"en bones' to extremel! serious incidents of multiple assaults# It can be life*threatening resulting in internal in8uries' permanent handicaps' and disabilities or death# 6an! women in our sample have described being hit against the walls or with pieces of furniture' being repeatedl! "ic"ed and punched and being stabbed or sometimes cut with "nives:sharp weapons # Ps"cho'o ica' and 1motiona' Abuse It is ver! rare for women to experience ph!sical violence' which is not accompanied b! emotional abuse and threats# 2he use of intimidating threats of in8ur!' beating up' a bro"en arm' harm to children' and sexual violence' are used b! men to exert control# Emotional abuse ta"es other forms apart from verbal threats' and ver! often involves degradation and humiliation# %omen are persistentl! insulted' or sub8ected to continuous intimidation or verbal aggression# 6ental and ps!chological abuse of women can often be financial* being denied mone! for children' or having their own mone! being ta"en awa!# Isolation from friends and famil! is another cruel form of control# (ll

these different forms of violence leave women terrified' deepl! distressed and violated to the core#

Domestic 0io'ence in $an 'adesh

Domestic violence' or violence perpetuated in the home or famil! environment' is a ma8or social problem in Bangladesh# Domestic violence incidences are fairl! common and widespread across the countr!# %omen of all economic strata are vulnerable to maltreatment and abuse b! husbands' in*laws' and other famil! members# (vailable data suggests that the number of cases of domestic violence is increasingl! being reported in the newspaper# >ear of eporting @umber of cases of domestic violence reported %eports of Domestic 0io'ence in + Dai'" Ne2spapers )003 4 )0(( Despite the severe conse$uences to women=s ph!sical and emotional health' domestic violence is not recogni&ed as a serious social problem and societ! does not perceive domestic violence to be a serious crime# ather' it is viewed as a personal matter that should be resolved privatel! within the famil!# (s a result' law enforcement agencies are reluctant to get involved in cases of domestic violence and women are often victimi&ed with no recourse# 2he implicit indifference of societ! in matters of domestic violence perpetuates the notion that domestic violence is legitimate and male domination in the famil! is acceptable# +,,? A0, +,,/ AB, +,., A?C +,.. ..DB

%hile men ta"e advantage of this right to exert authorit!' women=s tolerance of domestic violence further entrenches domestic violence into the fabric of dail! life in Bangladesh#

@aturall!' $uestions arise as to wh! women are silent and do not spea" out against domestic violenceE %h! do so man! victims continue to sta! with abusive spousesE First' one has to bear in mind the social context in which women are raised# Bangladeshi women' as part of a patriarchal societ!' are from an earl! age' taught to be submissive' tolerant' and self*sacrificing# Furthermore' the social belief that a woman=s place is in her husband=s home is also deepl! rooted in women=s self*view and self*worth# 2hese social values ma"e it extremel! difficult for women to assert themselves and spea" out against domestic violence# In cases of marital and famil! conflict' societ! generall! places the blame on the wife and holds her exclusivel! responsible for failing to build a strong foundation in the famil!# Conse$uentl!' women are reluctant to complain of domestic violence or file cases against their husbands out of fear of unrelenting social stigmati&ation# ( second ma8or reason that women rarel! assert themselves in these matters is that women have few alternatives to sta!ing with their husbands# In some cases a woman might return to her paternal home and find shelter with her parents or siblings' but in most cases' women lac" famil! or communit! support# %ith no alternative' women reali&e that the! have no choice but to tolerate domestic violence and ma"e the best of their tragic situation#

Dimensions of Domestic 0io'ence

In Bangladesh' domestic violence has man! dimensions# 6ost of them are inflected against wife# 5suall! she is sub8ect to violence b! her husband or members of her husband)s famil!# In most of the cases fear of negative conse$uence of ma"ing an! allegation against husband' restrain the wife to proceed legall!# Fften time she feels vulnerable due to her lac" of financial strength# Some common forms of domestic violence in our countr! are *

.orture b" &usband5Wife $eatin

%ife beating is the most commonl! occurring act of domestic violence in Bangladesh# (n international report published b! the 5nited @ations in September of +,,, ran"ed the countr! first in wife beating and found that nearl! half of the adult female population surve!ed reported ph!sical abuse b! their husbands# 2his fact ma! be startling to the international communit!' however' in Bangladesh it is common "nowledge that husbands exert their authorit! and ph!sicall! assault wives for even minor mista"es' such as an unsatisfactor! meal' an untid! room' a conversation with another man' or an! act of disagreement or disobedience# 6en have been sociall! conditioned to genuinel! believe in their own superiorit!# From childhood the! are treated differentl! from their sisters# 2he! grow to believe that the! are more valuable and more deserving than women and that there opinion and views should have more weight than an! woman=s# Furthermore' predominant religious misinterpretations have further legitimi&ed these feelings# 2hese religious interpretations have also provided men with the 8ustification to chastise wives for disobedience and bring them bac" to the so* called correct path# In this wa!' men are able to delude themselves into believing

that abuse of their wives amounts to a religious dut! and the! are completel! 8ustified in their actions#

Do2r"6%e'ated 0io'ence
2he practice of dowr! demand (Joutuk1 is not deepl! rooted in Bengali 6uslim tradition' but has emerged as a ma8or social evil in recent !ears# Generall! dowr! means the propert! that the bride)s famil! gives to the groom or his famil! upon marriage# However' in Bangladeshi law' dowr! has been given an extended meaning# whatever is presented whether before or after marriage under demand' compulsion or pressure as consideration for the marriage can be said to be dowr!# 2he emergence of dowr! is more due to greed and commerciali&ation of marriage than the impact of traditional culture# ising unemplo!ment has contributed to the phenomenon9 as more and more !oung men are unable to find emplo!ment' their families use marriage and dowr! demand as a source of income# 7rospective grooms and their families demand large sums of mone! or propert! from the would*be bride=s famil! as a precondition to the marriage agreement# (lthough dowr! demand is illegal the practice persists in the rural communities# In fact' few marriages in the rural areas are performed without a dowr! condition# In most cases the complete dowr! is not paid at the time of marriage# ather the bride=s famil! pa!s part of the dowr! before the marriage and promises to pa! the remainder soon after the marriage# %hen the bride=s famil! fails to meet the deadline' her husband and in*laws verball! and ph!sicall! abuse her to compel her famil! to pa!# In man! cases the abuse becomes severe in nature' for example' the woman has acid throw on her face' is burnt' severel! beaten' and in some cases even murdered#

&i h6%is# Pre nanc"

For the most part' married women in Bangladesh are not aware of their own sexual and reproductive rights' and have onl! limited control over their own

bodies# ( woman=s freedom of choice regarding sexual intercourse' birth control' pregnanc!' pre*natal care' and abortion is restricted b! the collaborative decision*ma"ing of her husband and his famil!# ( man has complete autonom! to determine when he will have intercourse with his wife# In this situation' the husband is the aggressor and the wife merel! a passive participant# Similarl!' a wife=s personal convictions on birth control and famil! planning are irrelevant in decision*ma"ing9 once again she pla!s a passive role to her husband=s wishes# If the husband disli"es birth control' for whatever reason' then the wife has no wa! of protecting herself from unwanted pregnancies# Fften there is a pressure from the husband=s famil! for the wife to produce offspring' particularl! male offspring# 2he famil! is mainl! concerned with the birth of heirs' not the good health of the mother# (s a result' a !oung woman might begin conceiving at a ver! earl! age and endure several consecutive pregnancies in the hope of a male offspring# 2he in*law famil! pressures the woman to give birth to sons' as if she has control over biolog!' and if she fails to meet their expectations' the! inflict various forms of ph!sical and ps!chological abuse on her# (lthough ever!one is involved in the decision for the couple to have a child' nobod! is involved in providing ade$uate pre*natal care to the expectant mother# Fnl! AI of the reproductive aged women access existing health care facilities# 6an! women remain neglected and abused in the in*law#s home9 the! often endure low calorie inta"e' insufficient nutrition and insufficient medical attention through the course of their pregnanc! and as a result are at serious ris" of birth complications and maternal mortalit!# In fact' 0CI of all deaths of reproductive aged women are due to maternit! related issues# In Bangladesh three women die ever! hour because of maternal related complexities and nine million women whose lives have been saved following maternit! related complications continue to suffer from other long*term diseases#

.orture $" 7n68a2s

2orture b! in*laws is another common domestic violence against women in our countr!# 2he general attitudes a married woman is that she has to be suppressed at ever! step# Starting from parents to the husband all the member of his famil! usuall! behaves ver! rude with her# 7articularl! mother*in*law behaves ruthlessl! with wives of their sons# In such case women belonging to the husband famil! represent not femininit! but act as agents of stronger patriarch!# If the wife happens to be coming of a poor famil! or a famil! having lower social status' her miseries "nown no bounds# Her position as well as situation in the in*laws deteriorates da! b! da!# It ta"es the worse shape if her parents fail to meet up the dowr! demands of the in*laws b! the stipulated time# Verbal abuses become a part of her dail! life# She is compelled to do all the ordinar! 8obs of the famil! li"e coo"ing food' washing cloths and used croc"er! etc# @o one comes in her aid# She has to wor" li"e a slave' In man! famil! structure of Bangladesh this is the most common picture and the victim of the violence tolerate it without an! protest#

Marita' %ape
2his connotes a women)s unwilling sexual intercourse with her husband on the sole will of and coercion form the husband# ape b! husband is not recogni&ed in our societ!' 7eople are obsessed with the general notion that it)s the sacred dut! of a wife to meet up the sexual demands of her husband an! time# 2his is also been influenced b! religious misinterpretation# However' women often compelled to accept sexual intercourse with their husband against their will# (ll such cases go unreported# It goes so because there is nothing provided in the law against such penetration b! husband#


6urder is the ultimate form of domestic violence# 2he murder of women b! their husbands and in*laws is associated with both the escalation of dowr! demands' and with the more general harassment and severe beating of women# It is possible that' as in India' women are murdered if their dowries are too small9 if the woman is disli"ed b! her husband or his "in9 if her household s"ills are perceived to be lac"ing9 or even if her s"in is too dar"# Fften such murders are arranged to loo" li"e accidents' or suicides' with bodies being suspended to resemble a hanging' insecticides being poured down the dead woman)s throat or burning being passed off as a coo"ing accident# Li"e beating' the murder of women appears to be carried out b! husbands and in*laws' in distinction to sexual violence' which is more often carried out' or at least reported to have been carried out' b! un"nown men# However' various reports suggest an increase in fatal mugging' acid*throwing and other attac"s b! outsiders# 6an! women are in fact driven to suicide b! constant beating' harassment and the feeling that there is no escape#

Causes of Domestic 0io'ence

32he low social and economic status of women can be both a cause and a conse$uence of violence against women4 # Domestic violence represents an expression of human behaviours and attitudes and is deep rooted in the societ!# 32raditional attitudes b! which women are regarded as subordinate to men or as having stereot!ped roles perpetuate widespread practices involving violence or coercion# Such pre8udices and practices ma! 8ustif! domestic violence as a form of protection or control of women# 6ain causes of this form of violence are given below;

Maintenanc e of privac" Do2r" and ma'practice of tradition Continuatio n 9f domestic 0io'ence 7 norance about 'e a' protection Massive i''iterac" and povert" Structura' prob'em sponsorin discriminati on

8ac# of #no2'ed e about ri hts

Do2r" Demand
2he issue of dowr! demand is probabl! the most common source of domestic violence in rural Bangladesh' where not onl! the husband but also his famil! member ta"es part to torture the wife for dowr! demand# 2he incidents of murder or attempt to murder for dowr! are almost a regular phenomenon in our countr! and such death and torture are regular news in countr! newspapers#

Po'" am"
7ol!gam! is a ver! common phenomenon in rural Bangladesh# Because of the widespread povert! unemplo!ment !ouths ta"e it for granted that the! will earn

mone! through getting married with more than one woman# In each marriage the! placed high dowr! demand and it has proved' in man! parts of the countr!' to be a eas! means of profiteering# In Bangladeshi laws la! down that in order to marr! again' a man needs permission of several people* one being first wife# 2his permission is overloo"ed as being unnecessar!' or' in some cases' is threatened or beaten out of the first wife#

General or overall economic causes of famil! violence are considered to be increasing endlessness' pauperi&ation' unemplo!ment which have increased the stress and tension in male*female relations in the poor households and give rise to desertion' divorce and violence -Jahan' .//B1# Kabeer -./?/1 also stated 3Violence both s!stematic and random is part of the condition of povert! in as much as povert! is associated with relative powerlessness' and the poor are least able to defend themselves or to remove themselves from threatening situations4# Her paper shows that lac" of resource especiall! food in poor rural households and women)s failure to efficientl! accomplish their traditional gender roles lead to gender violence# For instance' a mother was beaten b! her son when his food ran short at mealtime9 wives were beaten b! husbands because there was too much or too little salt in the food9 a !oung orphaned girl was beaten b! her uncle when she as"ed for her share of fruits from famil! owned trees#

Socia'ization Processes
Girls and bo!s are brought up through discriminator! sociali&ation processes that result in an une$ual power relationship in their adulthood# 2his sociali&ation process also ma"es women helpless' deprived and disfranchised as a group# Fn the other hand abuse of wives was not reall! considered as crimes as appeared from discussion with men during apid (ssessment Stud! on violence -@aripo""ho' .//?a1# 2he! are considered to be the decision ma"ers in the

house and have the right to beat women when the! behave unacceptabl!#< 6an! believe that this right to be grounded in religious doctrine and some had heard that' according to Islamic texts' the parts of their bodies beaten b! their husbands would go to heaven<# Fther causes of marital violence or more specificall! wife beating include non*fulfillment of traditional gender role of women' sexual malad8ustment or non communication about sex' interference of in*laws as perceived b! couples -ibid1# 6oreover women)s lives are perceived to be less valuable and the! are disempowered in famil! relationships# 2herefore' the! commit suicide as an ultimate resort

Misinterpretation of %e'i ion

( common misinterpretation of Islamic teaching' the nusyuz verse of the Lur)an' which refers to wife*beating' is the most misinterpreted# 6an! have made use of this reference to 8ustif! arbitrar! violence against women# However' a deeper reading into the context of the reference reveals that the 7rophet of S(% advised a woman who complained of her husband slapping her to in fact reciprocate the act# 2he Lur)an intends to prevent the beating of wives and graduall! abolish the practice#

1:istin 8a2s pertainin to combat Domestic 0io'ence

6an! laws exist to punish the perpetrators of violence against women' however' lac" of awareness at the grassroots level' lac" of implementation of these laws' as well as the perpetrators usuall! being more powerful in societ! prevent these laws from being effectivel! executed and the victim of violence from availing 8ustice# Some of the laws are summari&ed below; (; Anti6Do2r" Prohibition Act (+30 2he Dowr! 7rohibition (ct of ./?, -(ct @o# MMMV of ./?,1' later amended b! the Dowr! 7rohibition -(mendment1 Frdinance' ./?+ -Frdinance @o# MLIV of ./?+1# 2his act had been enacted to prohibit the ta"ing or giving of dowr! in marriage# If an! person after the commencement of this act gives or ta"es dowr!' his punishment will be five !ear)s imprisonment or not less than one !ear or will be fined# Bangladesh 6ahila 7arishad' set up in ./C,' helped ma"e the passing of this law successful# ); Crue't" to Women 8a2 (+3* 2he Cruelt! to %omen -Deterrent 7unishment1 Frdinance ./?0' this ordinance is a special law providing for deterrent punishment to the offences of cruelt! to women# 2his ordinance includes offence dowr! death and torture# 2he offences under this ordinance shall be tried b! criminal courts# (ll provisions under this ordinance shall have effect over other general laws# *; Women %epression Act (++5 <Nari 9 Shishu Nir=aton Domon Ain )000; 7revention of epression of %omen and Children (ct +,,, replaced the

epression of %omen and Children -Special Enactment1 (ct .//A# 2he (ct defines' court'dowr!' women' children' Code of Criminal 7rocedure' .?/?' High Court Division and importance of such laws# 2his law also describes punishment

of various offences# It provides for Special Courts for the cases coming under the (ct# 2he offences are considered to be non*bailable -with certain exceptions1# 2here is a time limit set for the investigation and the completion of the case -although in most cases it is not respected1# -; Acid 0io'ence %epression Act )00) ( new provision was added to the 7enal Code to prevent acid attac"s# 2hrough the promulgation of an -(mendment1 Frdinance' a new Section' 0+D( in the 7enal Code' provides for capital punishment in acid*throwing cases# 2hus the willful disfiguring of women b! this means has been made punishable b! death in the 7enal Code# 5; .he Pena' Code 2he flinging of acid on the bodies and faces of women became such a common means of revenge in the ./?,s' that a new provision was added to the 7enal Code to prevent such violence# 2hrough the promulgation of an -(mendment1 Frdinance' a new Section' 0+D ( in the 7enal Code provides for capital punishment in acid* throwing cases# 2hus the willful disfiguring of women b! this means has been made punishable with death in the 7enal Code# However' this provision has not prevented the crime from ta"ing place substantial numbers are reported' especiall! from small towns in the different districts of Bangladesh# >; 8e a' Aid Act )000 2he Legal (id (ct +,,, has been enacted to provide free legal aid to citi&ens b! the State# 5nder this (ct a @ational Legal (id 5nit has been set up' operating from Dha"a# Each district has its branch office and there are committees at upazila and union parishads' local government bodies#

However' given that the applicant has to undergo a ver! complex and rather bureaucratic procedure to access the legal aid fund from the government)s legal aid scheme' most of the fund allocated for the scheme has remained unused# (lso' the (ct has received little publicit! and its existence and potential are little "nown to most people' especiall! those who might benefit most from it# 2he Gender and Justice 5nit of (SK is the main committee member of this fund# @ina Goswami' (dvocate at (SK states' 3>es' it continues to be a challenge to gain access to this fund# 6oreover' the government fails to reali&e that the fund should not onl! be utili&ed when the client is going to court and needs to hire a law!er# 2he legal process begins much earlier on right after the client has become a victim of violence and the Legal (id Fund should also cover the costs of these legal expenses#4

7nterventions to combat Domestic 0io'ence

2he government created a permanent Law Commission to review all laws related to protection of women=s rights and to provide recommendations wherever re$uired# 2he 6inistr! on %omen and Children (ffairs has underta"en multicultural pro8ects to eliminate violence against women including setting up Fne*Stop Crisis Centers -FSCC1 in Dha"a and Investigation a8shahi 6edical College Hospitals mainl! to help acid*throwing and rape victims secure $uic" Formal ecord -FI 1 and other services# In addition' some police stations have Special Cell for %omen# (t the national' district and thana levels' Committees for the 7revention of Violence against %omen have been formed# Violence prevention cells also exist in the Department of %omen=s (ffairs and the Jati!o 6ahila Sangastha# Shelter homes for abused and tortured women and for women under safe custod! have also been established both b! the government and @GFs * though far too inade$uate to meet the needs# Some interventions and networ"s are discussed below ;

$an 'adesh 8e a' Aids and Services .rust <$8AS.; %idest geographical coverage amongst other existing legal aid and human rights @GFs (lternative informal courts in .+, villages across the countr! *7romotion of legal awareness among its beneficiaries -particularl! poor and disadvantaged1 (dvocac! and 7IL unit is currentl! running consultation meetings with relevant sta"eholders to identif! anomalies' loopholes' and challenges in the Famil! Law Frdinance and the Suppression of Violence against %omen and Children (ct and suggesting amendments to the 6inistr! of Law' Justice and 7arliamentar! *(ffairs for polic! changes

Ain696Sha'ish ?endra <AS?;


free legal aid to the disenfranchised' including victims of

violence Implements programmes in twelve upa&ilas of eleven districts Fperates five legal aid clinics within Dha"a *Collaboration of +.A legal clinics with B (C outside Dha"a uns a temporar! shelter home called Halfway Home based in Dha"a# (lso ma"es referrals to other shelter homes - Nirmol and Shishu Polli Plus#1 *Fffers counseling services and invites other organi&ations to develop staff b! sending them to counseling training programme at Bangladesh Institute of 6anagement -BI61# *6obili&e women and communities b! lobb!ing with state authorities to ensure that proper and timel! action ta"es place for violence victims# (lso generates public awareness and opinion on cases on V(%#

*Compiles media*reported incidences of VAW and disseminates this information to the public# 7ublishes (nnual Human eport in Bangladesh -since .//?1# ights

*Conducts training and awareness building and produces its own posters' leaflets and short videos and other awareness building tools

$an 'adesh Nationa' Women@s 8a2"ers Association <$NW8A; 7aralegal training' legal aid and advocac!' legal education Lobb!ing with government for legal reform# 7rovides legal awareness training to government and nongovernmental personnel' law!ers' and the police# 7rovides shelter home called Proshanti where the! provide legal aid' basic food N shelter' recreation facilities' medical and ps!chological care' repatriation of traffic"ed women' formal and non*formal schooling' capacit! building of survivors' staff' and partner organi&ations' vocational training and carr! out cultural events for survivors of violence# Conduct advocac!' research and awareness to prevent future violent acts and are developing a resource centre to provide resources to combat child traffic"ing and prostitution where partner organi&ations also contribute

$an 'adesh Mahi'a Parishad <$MP; Has lin"s with law enforcing agencies 7rovide legal support' legal counseling' and wor" together with legal' 8udicial and medical personnel to support survivors of violence %or" to bring about legal reform b! drafting alternative laws# o"e!a Sadhan' a shelter home' provides 6edicare' legal aid'








opportunities to more than thousands of distressed women# Currentl! accommodates +A victims# 5tili&es campaigns and advocac! as a means to bring about positive changes in patriarchal attitudes towards women# %or" towards reform of law' especiall! the 5niform Famil! Code as well as anti*dowr! and suppression of violence against women laws# See" to politicall! empower women and uphold the government)s pledge to CED(% and other international conventions# Child marriage' against# $an 'adesh !nna"an Parishad <$!P; Has anal!sed the Anti-Dowry A ts and the Nari ! Shishu Nir"aton Domon Ain #$$% and conducts research on other laws related to VAW# Carries out report writing for raising awareness# Lobbies and advocates for legal reform based on people)s needs and wants# Naripo##ho Conducts awareness building as one if its ma8or activities' especiall! among state agencies# Leaflets' posters' simple information on laws' and on state and non*state services are produced and disseminated# pol!gam!' forced prostitution and religious fundamentalisms are some of the issues that B67 campaigns

2here are certain measures that needed to be ta"en immediatel! to improve the condition of women and support them against domestic violence# 2hose are as follows; O 7roper application of law and public awareness# O Inclusion of violence related lesson in school curriculum# O Social wor"ers should come forward and legal education should be ensured# 2he nature of the problem demands a wider and comprehensive initiative to eliminate the whole# So a long*term arrangement for the same is vital# 2he core of the arrangement is some short of advocac! program with several dimensions# 2hose are as follows; O Local Government should be made more effective to protect violence# Local Government should be empowered b! some legal power and it is to be ensured that Local Government will bear ever! responsibilit! of an! violence within its entit!# O %omen themselves have to thin" for the possible wa!s to solve the violence# 2he! have to tr! to develop awareness of their husbands concerning domestic violence# For example' if the! can ma"e their husbands understand that the violent activities committed b! him is unfair and un8ust and also explain the adverse effect of such violence upon their children at some special moments their husbands would be convinced#

O If the husbands can be made reali&ed how their children are effected mentall! as a result of such violence* would be a good measure to stop such violence#

O 7oliticians would be more responsible and dedicated to protect violence# O Influential people of the societ! -e#g#' teachers' famil! chiefs1 can pla! a vital role to protect violence if the! ta"e proper initiatives# O (wareness is the must for the change of the present situation# O Economic development is a prere$uisite to reduce violence# O Local organi&ation can prevent a great deal of violence b! their direct support -e#g#' li"e child marriage1# O %e have to thin" about the formation of a local level cell -team1 comprises of influential members of the societ!# 6oreover' we have to design the possible measures of support to be given to the victims b! the team# O Education will be the best measure to reduce violence# In addition' women would be self*sufficient and mentalit! of the concerned people would be changed#

Domestic violence against women is condoned b! the public:private dichotom!' which is also a product of patriarchal ideolog!# 2he exploitation ta"es place at home and women are usuall! abused behind closed doors# Even when women are read! to brea" the tradition' the! are restrained b! this dichotom!' which is apparent in the handling of wife abuse cases b! the professionals# 2hus women are again restricted b! the norms of privac! and social pressures' which confine wives to an almost invisible status# 6oreover' in case of such violence' various social practices' religious beliefs as well as state policies' operate to treat some incidents or events as 3personal=' =shameful= and not to be spo"en of in public# It is not a coincidence that most of these incidents concern women# 2hus a wife ma! thin" that if her husband beats her' it is her personal problem# State polic! treats men as primar! bread*earners and considering women=s income as being essentiall! supplementar! in a male* headed household 2o eliminate domestic violence against women in Bangladesh' we needs to challenge the vested =rights= and =roles= of men and the social control mechanisms that reinforce the superiorit! of men and subordination of women# 2he une$ual power relations often result in the dominance exercised through violence Greater public awareness to change gender biased attitude is the most important precondition to enable solutions to materiali&e# (long with a more gender* sensitive sociali&ation process' legal remedies have to be in place# 2raining of police' 8udicial and law enforcement officers on gender sensitivit! and domestic violence is crucial# Facilities for the counseling of victims of violence

and their families need to be enhanced# 2he economic empowerment of women needs to be addressed with related training for essential s"ills# Support services for the victims of violence and their families should be approached on an interdisciplinar! basis inclusive of emplo!ment opportunities' housing facilit!' legal aid and da! care facilities#

Jahan and Islam 6 -Editor1 ' .//C'Violence (gainst %omen in Bangladesh;

(nal!sis and (ction' %omen For %omen and South (sian (ssociation For women Studies# S (li -Editor1)+,,,'Violence (gainst %omen in Bangladesh*+,,, -report1'Bangladesh @ational %omen Law!er (ssociation# S (li -Editor1)+,,.'Violence (gainst %omen in Bangladesh* +,,,.-report1'Bangladesh @ational %omen Law!er (ssociation (hu8a './/?'Violence (gainst %omen' awat publications

http;::en#wi"ipedia#org:wi"i:DomesticPviolence http;::www#unicef*irc#org:publications:pdf:digestDe#pdf http;::www#unhcr#org:refworld:countr!''I BC''BGD''B,0dd.eB,',#html http;::www#un#org:womenwatch:daw:egm:vaw*stat*+,,A:docs:expert* papers:Farou"#pdf http;::www#iwraw*ap#org:aboutus:pdf:F7vaw#pdf http;::www#hurights#or#8p:archives:focus:section+:+,,A:,D:violence*against* women*bangladesh http;::www#bridge#ids#ac#u":reports:re.,c#pdf

https;::centre#icddrb#org:pub:publication#8spEclassificationIDQADNpubIDQC./C http;::www#guttmacher#org:pubs:8ournals:0,./,,B#html