Call for strict enforcement of women’s safety laws
There is no shortage of laws for the protection of women in our country. But what we lack is the political will to implement them strictly, an International Women’s Day program observed at the Thrissur Press Club on Friday.
The panel discussion, “Rising Rate of Crime Related to Women – Reasons and Solutions”, was organized by the District Office for Women’s and Children’s Development, the Women’s Welfare Office and the Thrissur Press Club.
Multi-faceted battles are needed to control rising rates of violence against women, speakers noted. A necessary paradigm shift in the attitude of society to consider women equal to men in domestic and public spaces. Women and girls themselves should set the priorities in their lives, speakers noted.
“Each person should have a clear idea of their rights. Even though Kerala is a highly literate state, we have yet to become a society that appreciates gender equality,” said Usha Bindu Mol, Deputy Collector, who opened the session.
There has been a sharp increase in domestic violence during the COVID period, noted Thrissur City Police Deputy Commissioner VK Raja. The actual number of cases may be much higher than reported cases, he noted. Girls should take on leadership roles to rise in society, he added.
Although we have enough laws, we lack clarity on how to use them for the protection of women and children, said the chairman of the Child Protection Committee, KG Viswanathan.
Many laws around the country lost their teeth and needed to be changed in a timely manner, retired prosecutor Pious Mathew said. Empowerment is the main tool to face the challenges, the district information officer, CP Abdul Karim, reminded students from various colleges and media who participated in the program.
P. Bhanumathy, founder of AMHA (Association for Mentally Handicapped Adults) noted that women need to value their self-esteem. Social changes must start with homes, he added.
P. Meera, District Women and Child Development Officer, S. Lekha, Women Welfare Officer, and others spoke.