India: Activists Call for Stronger Laws and Law Enforcement for Gender-Based Violence
Tuesday, December 26, 2023 12:50 PM

In what women's advocates say is an all-too-familar occurence, a woman was paraded naked through the streets of her village and beaten in the southern state of Karnataka. Villagers said she was being punished because her 24-year-old son had eloped with his 18-year-old girlfriend, who was going to be subjected to an arranged marriage the next day. Police rescued the abusedwoman and took her to hospital. A dozen people have been arrested and a local police officer suspended for "dereliction of duty." Similar incidents have made news across India a number of times in recent years, even with paraded women subjected to gang rape.. Attorney and activist Sukriti Chauhan shares that such incidents are rooted in caste-based violence or family violence, where perpetrators target women for perceived crimes of their entire caste or family. "The message we need to get across is stop fighting your ethnic, caste and family battles on our bodies, they are not your battlefield," she says.

Compiled from: Geeta Pandey, "Woman paraded naked: A familiar headline in India," BBC, Dec. 26, 2023.