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Gender Campaign - 16 Days Activism


UN Women champions the cause of gender equality.  UN Women is the UN organization delivering programmes, policies and standards that uphold women’s human rights and ensure that every woman and girl lives up to her full potential. 


UN Women kicks off UN-wide annual campaign on 25 November, the International Day to End Violence against Women.  Over the following 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, UN Women calls all governments, NGOs, institutions, and citizens to show us how much the world cares about ending violence against women and girls under the theme "UNITE! Invest to prevent violence against women and girls".  This call for global campaign is supported by the United Nations through the Secretary General’s initiative, “UNITE by 2030 to End Violence against Women”.


Though, it is necessary for everyone to respond to this UN call.  It is the responsibility of women's rights organizations to conduct gender campaigns and should act as a driving progress toward a more equitable and violence-free society for women and girls. In the recent past everywhere, a conservative/rightist perspective of women rights is rising its head and anti-women forces are gaining ground. There is a visible surge in anti-rights movements and backlash against women human rights.  In this context, the obligation of women rights organizations is more, but unfortunately, the response from NGOs is not to the extent it ought to be.  In view of the importance of the UN call DSS has been implementing these 16 days activism for the past 18 years and has been conducting vigorous gender campaign during these 16 days.


DSS has been working to empower women and girls to assert their rights and seek help when they experience violence. Through education, training, and addressing the mental health issues of victims of atrocities, DSS is able to build resilience and self-confidence among the oppressed women, which can contribute in ending the cycle of violence. 


Apart from various other activities, DSS has been focusing on:

  • Empowering Dalit Adivasi women and girl children to break the silence on violence.

  • Transformative learning.

  • Survivor-centered responses. (addressing their mental health, access to justice etc.)

The annual feature of 16 days activism gender campaign by DSS has created impact in sensitizing the society in general and youth in particular about gender issues. This year also DSS launched its gender campaign on 25th November 2023 and carried on the campaign vigorously for 16 days in the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.   During these 16 days, DSS conducted Conferences, legal clinics, round table conferences, street meetings in slums and educative campaigns to adolescents and youth in schools, hostels and colleges in both the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

 

Andhra Pradesh

 

25th November, 2023

 

Inauguration of the Campaign (Press Club, Vijayawada)

Inaugural program was held on 25th November at Press Club, Vijayawada.  A large number of women collective members, people from Vijayawada and surrounding places gathered at the venue.  

Sri. Kaki Suneetha, IAS flagged off the campaign at 10.00 a.m.  The women participants raised slogans on gender equality and against all forms of violence on women.  The women took out a procession carrying flags and banners.  Thereafter, a formal inaugural meeting was held at Press Club, Vijayawada.  SC, BC welfare associations heads, Sri. Ratna Pradeep and Sri. B.C. Ramana participated in the meeting in addition to the Chief Guest Sri. Kaki Suneetha, IAS.   DSS coordinators Ms. Kumari, Ms. Rohini and Ms. Roja were also on the dais.


Ms. Jhansi Geddam, National Convener of DSS presided over the meeting and she explained about the 16 days campaign.


Sri. Kaki Suneetha, IAS:


She appreciated DSS and Jhansi for all the activities that she has been doing for the empowerment of dalit/Adivasi women.  She said, she consented to participate in the meeting to encourage the useful activities being implemented by DSS. She pointed out the lack of education among women and said that atrocities are being committed on dalit women as they are considered weak and vulnerable.   Compared to other states, girls in Andhra Pradesh are much better in education and social awareness.

Despite such a situation, still the atrocities are taking place, which calls for further strengthening the women and girls.  She cited the figures of atrocities committed on Dalits in 2016 as 2740 which declined to 2049 by 2020.  This shows that the number of atrocities are going down.  The government schemes like Amma Vodi through which money is given for children’s education, hostels and social welfare residential institutions.  Yet more can be done and organizations like DSS have to remind the government.  She said the women should try to be self-reliant by earning and becoming economically independent. Ambedkar said that a society’s progress as to be estimated on the basis of the progress of women in that society.  Every woman should work and should not think of marriage and settling down at home.  She suggested to continue to work after marriage also and to choose only such a family wo would allow to work after marriage and who would treat the woman equally.      


Sri Ratna Pradeep, said that women have been oppressed from the very beginning and there is a dire need that they have to be freed from shackles. The constitution of India provides a great platform for women to achieve their freedom and equal rights. The implementation of special laws that are framed for protection of women are not being implemented and this results in major backwardness of women and in particular dalit Adivasi women and girl children.  He also said that he established “Raja Gruha” for the purpose of SC, ST, BC, Minorities to unite and meet. 

 

Sri Ramana, said that women should always be in the forefront, whenever an incident of violence occurs and should fight for justice. They should be fearless and fight for the just cause. Women should be knowledgeable and create awareness to society around them. There is a essential need for women leadership in our society. Through the leadership of women only the betterment of society is possible.

 



25th November 2023

On 25th November 2023, after the Inaugural Meeting of Gender Campaign DSS team conducted meeting with all the grade-4 workers staff of the Government General Hospital, Vijayawada on Gender Concepts.

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Co-Ordinator; Rohini, District Co-Ordinator; Roja, District Co-Ordinator, Sri Devi, SKA and few more women collective leaders participated in the campaign.

 


26th November 2023

On 26th November 2023, the following villages in Guntur District were covered in Gender Campaign:

1.      Atmakuru, Mangalagiri

2.      Kaza, Guntur

3.      Peda Kakani, Guntur

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Rohini, District Coordinator; Kumari, District Coordinator; Mary Nirmala, State Women Collective leader and few more women collective leaders participated in these villages.



27th November 2023

Seminar on “Rule of Law and the Constitution”

Constitutional governance and implementation of the principle of Rule of Law is essential in protecting the rights of people.  When it comes to the violence on dalit/Adivasi women and girl children, there are very stringent laws like the SC, ST (PoA) Act which if properly implemented will help in eradicating the atrocities on dalit/Adivasi women and girl children.   But unfortunately, as it stands today, this stringent law is effectively implemented due to various reasons like, inherent prejudices among the personnel, ignorance of the amendments, corruption and influence of the dominant castes in manipulating the legal system. 


Keeping all these factors in heart, it is thought best to initiate a debate on the situation of Rule of Law in the country and a seminar was organized on the topic.  The context of 26th November being “Constitutional Day” also is important reason for selecting this theme for debate. 

Accordingly, a Seminar on the topic “Rule of Law and the Constitution” was held from 11.00 a.m. at the Moot Court Hall of A.C. College of Law, Guntur.  Sri. Sk. Imtiaz Ahamad, District Judge, Kadapa district was the Chief Guest.  Other dignitaries were: Sr. Dokka Manikya Vara prasad, Former Minister, Sri. G Elisha, Correspondent, A.C. College of Law, Sri. Amrutha Varshini, Principal of A.C. College of Law and others spoke on the occasion while Ms. Jhansi Geddam presided over the function.


Sk. Imtiaz Ahamad, spoke about the importance of Rule of Law.  He said: The concept of Rule of Law guarantees every citizen the equal protection of laws. All laws passed by the State or Union legislatures are applicable to all citizens equally.  Whenever any wing of the State violates Rule of Law or principles of natural justice, a citizen can move the High Cort or the Supreme Court.  Article 32 provides writ jurisdiction to the Supreme Court and a citizen can approach the Supreme Court if his/her fundamental rights or violated.  Dr. B.R. Ambedkar said that Article 32 is he soul of the constitution.  Similarly, a citizen can approach the High Court under Article 226 for not only violation of fundamental rights but for any other purpose also.  Thus, the Constitution conferred wide powers on the High Courts to render justice to a citizen on any aspect.  During the course of 7 decades of the functioning of the Supreme Court, many landmark judgments protecting the rights of citizens have been given.  The Supreme Court not only protected the rights, but through its interpretation the court expanded the rights.  Over a time, the Supreme Court through its judicial activism, progressively interpreted the Constitution, particularly Article 21 in such a way as to include many rights like right to travel abroad, right to privacy, right to clean environment, right to dignity, right to equal wages, right to bail, abolition of bonded labour, and other rights as part of right to life and liberty.   Thus, judiciary has played a major role in protecting rule of law.  Judicial review provided in the constitution acts as a check on executive overreach and executive arbitrariness.

 Judicial review of administrative actions and legislation kept the governance and laws within the framework of the Constitution.  Thus, the Supreme Court did yeoman service to the nation as the guardian of the Constitution.  By developing the principle of ‘Basic Structure of the Constitution’, the court has put a check on the constitutional amending powers of Union legislature in its limits.  The Court has ruled out the possibility of any regime changing the democratic form of governance.


Sri. Manikya Vara prasad, in his speech said as follows:

In 1946, Britishers formulated the Cabinet Mission plan, advising India to frame its own constitution. The Constituent Assembly was formed, but the Muslim League, representing Muslim sections, did not participate. Jawaharlal Nehru drafted the Objectives Resolution, which was later adopted by the Constituent Assembly. MR Jaykar raised objections to the resolution without Muslim representation, and Ambedkar agreed.


When the country was divided, Ambedkar lost his representation, but everyone wanted him, as he represented 20% of the population. He was co-opted and drafted the Constitution, which was adopted on November 26, 1949. Rule of law is an important concept in any legal system, incorporated as an inherent principle in Article 14 and other articles dealing with equality. A.V. Dicey first formulated the concept as a democratic principle against authoritarian regimes.

In India, the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was adopted to abolish the unequal system of administration of justice. All laws covering various aspects of social and economic life are governed by uniform laws applicable to everyone equally. Only a few laws govern a small section of people for the sake of promoting socially, economically, educationally disadvantaged sections and women. 

Rule of Law is a fundamental aspect of natural justice, ensuring that no person is condemned unjustly. It protects citizens' rights against unjust prosecution, punishment, and other actions affecting their rights. Rule of law aids in the advancement of society and provides opportunities for all sections of people to participate in national development. It is at the root of functioning and well-being of the nation and its people. Without rule of law, society ends up in chaos and anarchy, without scope for development.

At the global level, every country has a rule of law essential for democracy. Court judgments are not permanent, and changes can occur due to interpretation and applicability of facts. Courts do justice sometimes and sometimes do injustice, and litigants can appeal to the Supreme Court if dissatisfied with lower courts' decisions.

Atrocities on Dalits and women continue to occur, with the majority of undertrials and convicts belonging to scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, minorities, backward castes, and only a few from upper castes. Rule of law is provided in the legal system, but people have not imbibed the culture of it. The Constitution provides Articles 14 and 15 to abolish inequality and provide special measures for upliftment of Dalits and women. Untouchability and caste discrimination are constitutionally removed through Articles 14, 15, 17, and other directive principles. Ambedkar attempted to reform Hindu laws by drafting the Hindu Code bill.

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar's core principle, fraternity, is reflected in the constitution. He is a patriot and a renowned constitution patriot. Political parties often talk about democracy during opposition but forget their promises once in power. People should act as watchdogs for human rights and rule of law. Students of law should read Dr. Ambedkar's powerful speech on submitting the constitution.


Sri G Elisha, in his speech said as follows:

I appreciate DSS for organizing this seminar on a relevant topic.  Our Preamble declares India as, sovereign, socialist, secular and democratic republic and promises to protect and promote the core principles of Equality, Fraternity and Liberty. One of the important characteristics of our Constitution is flexibility and it has been amended more than 120 times to meet the growing demands and needs of the changing context. Constitution has three lists that enumerate the powers of State, Central governments and Concurrent list on which both have powers. At present rule of law is not enjoyed by all and only a few sections are taking the advantage of laws.


Dalit/ Adivasi women and girls are being subjected to various forms of violence.  Existing special laws like SC, ST (PoA), Act, POCSO Act, JJ Act are good but unable to render full justice.  It is necessary to study the implementation of these Acts and bring necessary amendments.  We should elect only such a legislature that may be useful for Dalit/Adivasi etc.   Government has their priorities and Excise policy being changed not law for poor.

To please the Dalits and win their votes, governments have built 125 feet statue of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar and named the secretariat after him, but when it comes to implementing rule of law, the government show little interest.

In Manipur a particular tribe following Christian religion were raped, killed and attacked.  It is suspected that the government willfully encouraged violence on the basis of religion.   While such a large-scale violence targeting a particular religion is taking place, our central leadership did not respond the way it should be. In the courts, Judgements are being given on the basis of the nature of the judges, their interpretation.


Amrutha Varshini, explained about how Macaulay who was Chairman of the Law Commission, during the British time codified many laws.  He was instrumental in passing many laws which were applied to all castes uniformly.    He concentrated on education and did commendable work in establishing educational institutions.  During those days, Christian missionaries spread education among the downtrodden and established schools/colleges for all.


Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, is a great visionary and drafted the constitution which conferred equal rights on the oppressed people.  He was instrumental in inspiring the oppressed castes struggle for equality and dignity.   



N Satish, in his speech, India is in now going through a crisis and there is an atmosphere of suffocation since a decade.  The aims and objectives of the constitution, particularly the principle of fraternity is being trampled.  People are being divided on religious lines.  Dr. B.R. Ambedkar explained the philosophy of constitution and gave importance to the principle of fraternity, but the state is failing and are giving ago by to the principle of secularism.

Governors are acting as hindrance to the legislative functions of the States.  A few Governors are keeping important bills passed by the state legislatures pending.  The concerned state governments had to approach the Supreme Court on the matter and the court admonished the concerned governors of states not to interfere with the functioning of the States and to approve the bills pending.  It should be noted that the Governors have no veto powers and they are bound to act upon the advice of the government.

Constitutional patriotism is the real patriotism.  There is no use of talking great about the country or its past greatness, without implementing the constitution in letter and spirit.



Amala Kumari, Agricultural Department, said this is a good theme and contextual as 26th was Constitutional day.  Ambedkar faced discrimination in schools and college.  He was humiliated and ridiculed, but he did extremely hard work and came up with flying colors in all the institutions that he studied.  Now he is hailed by everyone, including foreign universities and governments. 

Rule of law is supreme and it is the basic principle of democracy.  This principle is part of Article 14 of the constitution and we should treat constitution like Bible/Quron/Bhagavad-Gita.  Rule of law lays down the principle that law is above you how high you may be.

Executive, judiciary should implement rule of law and all forms of discrimination from family, village and urban areas should be abolished and everyone treated equally.

 

 

28th November 2023

On 28th November 2023, one college and one school in Guntur District and a Slum in Mangalagiri was covered as mentioned below:

1.      Telakula Jalaiah and Polisetty Sundaram College, Guntur

2.      Pattabipuram Municipal Corporation School, Guntur

3.      Ratnala Cheruvu, Mangalagiri


Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Rohini, District Coordinator; Kumari, District Coordinator; Mary Nirmala, SWC and few more women collective leaders participated in these colleges, schools and slums.

 


29th November 2023

On 29th November 2023, 5 schools in Vijayawada were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Rajiv Gandhi Municipal Corporation School, Vijayawada

2.      Radha Nagar Government Junior College, Vijayawada

3.      Care and Share Government School, Vijayawada

4.      M.K. Baig Government School, Vijayawada

5.      G.V. Subba Reddy Government High School, Vijayawada

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Rohini, District Coordinator; Roja, District Coordinator and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools.


Along with the DSS staff, Shri. Srinivas Reddy, Principal of Rajiv Gandhi Municipal Corporation School; Shri. Venkateswara Rao, Principal of M.K. Baig Government School, Shri Appa Rao, Incharge Principal of G.V. Subba Reddy Government School, Head Masters and Teachers also actively participated in this campaign. They re-iterated the opinion of DSS and mentioned that such campaigns in schools and colleges are the need of the hour in present day scenarios.


30th November 2023:

Round Table Conference

Round Table Conference (RTC) was conducted on 30th November 2023 at Ambedkar Bhavan, Lenin Centre, Vijayawada.  Thirty women who were victims of various atrocities and who are struggling to access justice attended the RTC.  RTC is a facilitation meeting in which the officers will have the opportunity to directly listen to the woes of women victims of atrocities in accessing justice.  This direct interaction with the group of women victims provides occasion for all the concerned officers of various departments in the justice administration system, social welfare and other departments to plug the loopholes and render justice to the hapless victims, who have been running from pillar to post in pursuit of compensation, rehabilitation, trial of cases, etc.  As part of gender campaign, DSS arranges RTC and Legal Clinic in both states with the objective of accessing justice to the women victims and promote the proper implementation of SC, ST (PoA) Act.

It is a fact that apart from physical injury, the victims of atrocity undergo a lot of trauma and this trauma continues and intensifies further, due to the problems faced by them in accessing justice, resulting in mental health problems like depression, suicidal thoughts etc.  Apart from sadness, the depression victims experience pains, cramps, digestive problems, anxious, empty mood, feelings of hopelessness or pessimism and irritability.  It is highly essential to counsel the victims and assist them to snap out of depression and trauma.  With this mental health perspective in view, in this RTC, in addition to the concerned officials, DSS specially requested a psychologist to give counselling to the distressed victims.

In this RTC held on 30th November, 2023 Sri. Byra Koteswara Rao, Additional Director of Prosecutions, Dr. G. Srinivasa Rao, Member of SHRC, Sri. Vineetha Busi, Member of Women Commission, Sri. Suresh, S.P., PCR Cell, Sri. P. Tejovathi, Inspector of CID, Sri. Anuradha, Psychologist, Sri Syam Sundar, Chief Bureau of The Hans India attended as Jury members and made several recommendations for the redressal of grievances of the victims and counselled the victims.    

On 30th November 2023 by 11.00 a.m. the RTC commenced and victims and witnesses gathered and to explain in detail their arduous journey in accessing justice.   Several representatives of mass organizations, media representatives and DSS volunteers were presented.   

Ms. Jhansi Geddam, who presided over the RTC first explained the objectives of the RTC and background of the atrocities, stage of the case, stage of payment of compensation.  Satya, National Coordinator called out each victim to narrate their case and before their presentation, he explained the type of atrocity, present situation of case for each victim.  The Jury Members listened to each victim’s presentation and responded as follows:

Sri. G. Srinivasa Rao, Member, State Human Rights Commission:

DSS has been fighting against atrocities on dalit/Adivasi women and girls since long time.  I have long association with Jhansi sister.  Twenty years ago, I accompanied her to fact finding visits to the victims of atrocities.  At that time when we were enquiring into a lock-up death in Ongole, we were taken into custody by the police and confined in the police station till evening and were released later. 

Now as a member of State Human Rights Commission I assure you that we can help in all instances of atrocities.  The Commission will take up issues and give necessary orders to render justice. 

I appeal to all Dalits and dalit girls to concentrate on education and acquiring knowledge.  With knowledge Dalits can develop the courage to -question all forms of injustice and oppression.  Everyone should realize that Dalits are not low and it is only an outmoded tradition and oppressive system which treats them as low.  All human beings are born equal and Dalits should feel self-confidence and reject the caste system which brands them as low.   One should keep in mind that only with education we can fight against the oppression and gain full equality and dignity.

Jhansi responded to his speech and said that all the cases are submitted to the Commission and requested him to resolve and pass appropriate orders.



Sri. Vineetha Busi said that Dalit girls are being raped and killed by the dominant persons with impunity.  The perpetrators of crimes are able to indulge in such crimes with confidence that nothing will happen to them.

DSS has been struggling for the past 20 years to break this feeling of impunity.  If the SC, ST (PoA) Act is properly implemented perpetrators of crimes will be deterred.  The efforts of DSS in accessing justice to the victims of atrocities is laudable and it is necessary for all of us to cooperate with DSS in this mission.  I assure you all that the Commission is with you.


Sri Shyam Sundar, Chief of Hans India Bureau:

Caste oppression and hierarchical system in the caste ladder is the reason for the occurrence of atrocities against poor dalit/Adivasi women.   Caste prejudices and dominance associated with caste system has been at the root of all the problems faced by dalit/Adivasi women.   It was hoped that economic strength and education would shield the Dalits from dominance and attacks, but it is shocking to see that even the middle- and upper-class Dalits are also not immune from attacks and humiliation.  In today’s presentation of cases I noticed that some high-profile Dalits like an officer, a builder also are victims of atrocities.  Even they are not spared and were harassed and attacked on par with ordinary poor Dalits.  This evidences the fact that caste system and its evils have firm foundation and attained the overriding power of financial and educational status of Dalits.   It is time for all to seriously examine the system and devise ways to dismantle the caste system along with its structural and hierarchal domination.  In this context I recollect the anti-caste movement of 11th century AD led by Basavanna, who powerfully organized people against caste.  When large number of people rallied with him and abandoned their castes, for the sake of identity of this new formation, Basavanna adopted Shivite religion and made it mandator for everyone to wear the symbol of lord Shive and called them as ‘Linga dharulu’.  He named all his followers as Shivites and that they don’t belong to any caste Basavanna followers, formed themselves to a new caste, called lingayats. 

Now caste is dominating the consciousness of people to such an extent that, when a person comes, we first think of which caste he belongs and then only deal with him according to our ingrained caste perspectives.  When a portion in a house is to be let out on rent, the persons who want to be tenants as well as the owner of the house arrive at a deal only on caste basis.  We have become such a caste ridden society.

To come out of this type of caste ridden society, we have to seriously probe into all aspects of the system and we should all start another movement.



Byra Koteswara Rao, Addl DoP, in his speech said:

I have been attending DSS meetings for the past 15 years and I appreciate the efforts of DSS in facilitating the victims of atrocities in accessing justice. I can say confidently that if some Dalits are realizing legal access that is due to Ms. Jhansi.  DSS arranged Round Table Conferences have cleared many instances of payment of compensation to the victims of atrocities.

Practically, all Dalits can’t go to the Collector, police or social welfare officers and present their eligibility for compensation as per rules.  This type of gathering of the victims face to face with the concerned officials helps in resolving many hurdles in legal process and in getting compensation as per Rules and GOs. 

I appeal to all the victims to give deposition in the court about the atrocity.  You should not compromise for paltry sums offered by the perpetrators of crime or their henchmen, instead claim the compensation from the government due to you as per rules and stand up for justice.  The data of convictions under the SC, ST (PoA) Act shows that the rate of conviction is very low and this data gave rise to the allegations that the dalits are foisting false cases on innocent people.  This low conviction rate is due to various factors like faulty, insincere investigation, negligent prosecution by the PP, corruption, lopsided charge sheets etc.  Compromise by the victims is also an important reason for acquittals.  Hence it is necessary for all the victims to stand up for justice and should take the help of organizations like DSS.



Sri Suresh, SP, CID appreciated Jhansi and the work of DSS in facilitating the redressal of the rights of the victims.  It is sad to see so many victims are unable to get justice for long time.  - I am SP of PCR cell and I assure you that we will discharge our responsibilities to be best of our abilities.  Dr. B.R. Ambedkar provided us various rights in the constitution like right to equality, right to voting etc.  SC, ST (PoA) Act is like a protective cover for the Dalits.  It is necessary to spread awareness about this Act.

We should take the concept of equality to the people at large and see that there is increase in treating people with equality.  As PCR cell we are trying our best to take the message of equality.  Scheduled Caste women and tribal women constitute 50% of the population.  We should cooperate in protecting their rights.

Sri Rama devi, Psychologist, gave psychological counseling to the victims to infuse confidence in them.  Before the speaker started her speech, Jhansi Geddam explained about predicament of the girls who are cheated in the name of love.  In most cases, the girls file cases against their so-called lover and get him arrested.  These girls are adamant that he should marry her and insist that I want only this man. 


With this obsession, these girls are wasting a number of years of their precious life.  They are involved full time in the case and litigation and are not carrying on their daily life fruitfully.   Due to this obsession, they are not concentrating on education, skill development or other alternative way of settling in life.  She requested Sri. Rama Devi to educate and clarify the girls about this aspect.

After the brief introduction by Jhansi, the psychologist, Sri. Rama Devi spoke to the victims, particularly keeping in mind, the girls who were cheated in the name of love. 


She said: After a long gap of time also you are still continuing in trauma.  That is why you are still crying.  Coming out of the trauma is important, otherwise it affects your mental health. You are pursuing cases in courts and dealing with police.   You are unable to forget the injustice caused to you and are continuously in anxiety resulting in depression.  You are unable to concentrate on daily life.  Your daily activities are impacted as your life is stuck at one point and unable to come out of it.  You have developed a feeling that you can’t do anything and this is dragging you into the same thing all the time.  You have to come out of this mental frame, then only you can become normal.  You should realize that this is not the whole life.  There is more to life than this incident alone.  You have developed confidence in him and agreed for physical relationship before marriage and this is the mistake being repeated by many girls.

Why do you think you are low and your caste is low.  You should think rationally and think you are also human beings like any other caste person.

You are traumatized and not believing anyone and at times due to continuous thinking you may develop suicidal thoughts.  You are cheated by him, but you should also reflect on how much was your responsibility.  All cheaters employ the technique of flattering about your great qualities, beauty etc. and you surrender to this flattery.  You should go ahead in life without wasting all time about it only.  How many are able to think alternatively? You should develop internal strength.  You should shed the unwarranted feeling that what others are thinking about you.  You should know that others have no time to think about you.

Weeping for a while is fine as emotions come out of crying and it need not be suppressed.  You should remember that we can’t change the past and we have to think of future.  Our life is between -birth and death and the choice of carving out our life is with us.

You know that he cheated you and why you should you want that cheater again?  How can you lead marital life with a person who cheated you?  Insisting that he should marry you is nothing but degrading yourself.

You should come out of anxiety and for this you keep making friends and talk with others.  You should turn weaknesses into strength, instead of worrying about past.  It is over and can’t be undone.  You should realize that you are mentally strong that is why you are able to carry on your legal fight. You should concentrate on growing your children sensibly at least in future.

Start a daily routine of morning exercises, walking, meditation and yoga.  This simple daily routine will help you come out of your anxiety.  You can watch movies for a change.  Whenever there is opportunity, share your suffering with your near ones.

Learning self-defense tips and methods is important to all girls.  When someone tries to assault, you should shout for help and run away.  You should never shun to give a complaint to police or other authorities about any incident of threat or assault.  There are many Apps for the protection of women and girls.  You should install those Apps and know how to use them.

All girl children should be educated about Inappropriate touch.  It is done mostly by own people and children should be taught to retort such inappropriate touch and complain about it.   Awareness about such sexual abuse should increase. Music is also good for forgetting the injury and regain normalcy.  You can start meditation of paying attention on breathing, as this helps come out of stress. Make a routine of doing a thing of your favorite choice for 15 minutes every day and this helps you come out of anxiety. You should concentrate on balancing your mental energy and physical energy.  You should shed living in the past. 

Victim’s woes their agony before the Jury:


1st December 2023

On 1st December 2023, one school and one college in Vijayawada were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Puchalapalli Sundarayya Government High School, Vijayawada

2.      Sri Vidya Degree College, Vijayawada

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Rohini, District Coordinator; Roja, District Coordinator and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools and colleges.

 


2nd and 3rd December 2023

On 2nd and 3rd December 2023, Guntur slums were covered. Rohini, District Coordinator, Roja, District Coordinator and few more women collective leaders participated in these slum meetings.


4th December 2023

On 4th December 2023, 4 schools and one slum in Hyderabad District were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Government High School, Film Nagar, Hyderabad

2.      Ravi Niketan Government School, Erramanzil, Hyderabad

3.      Government High School, Erramanzil, Hyderabad

4.      Government Hight School, Raj bhavan Road, Hyderabad

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Renuka, State, Coordinator; Sumathi, SWC, Sujatha, SWC, Manjula, SWC and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools.

 

 

5th December 2023

On 5th December 2023, one school and one slum in Hyderabad District were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Master Talent High School, BJR Nagar, Hyderabad

2.      BJR Nagar Slum, Khairtabad, Hyderabad

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Renuka, State, Coordinator; Sumathi, Sujatha, Manjula, SWCs and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools and slums.

 


6th December 2023:

Legal Clinic

As part of the "16 days activism" of Gender Campaign, DSS conducted a “Legal Clinic” with 40 victims and witnesses on 6th December 2023., at Ambedkar Resource Center, Lakdikapul, Hyderabad.   40 women victims of various atrocities presented their woes in accessing justice.  The

response of the victims and the officials was overwhelming and both sides actively interacted and a serious attempt to appreciate the difficulties of the victims was made by the officers.

Sri. Lavanya, SP, PCR Cell; Sri. Srivani, Spl PP; Sri. Subhadra, Secretary of Women Commission; Sri. Subba Lakshmi, Addl. Director, SC Development; Sri. Padmaja Shah, Retd. Professor; Sri. Khaleeda Parveen, Sri Manikyam Busi, DE,

TRANSCO; Sri. Shobha; Sri. Anjaneyulu, Sri. Siddoji Rao, Sri. Daniel Vijay Prakash and others attended as jury members and made several recommendations for the redressal of grievances of the victims. Jhansi Geddam, National Convener of DSS presided over the Legal Clinic. Representatives of various people's organizations and other leaders actively participated in the Legal Clinic.



Sri. Lavanya, S.P., appreciated the facilitation of victims and officials to have firsthand knowledge of practical difficulties faced by the victims.  Her Observations are as follows:

In a few cases, the process of investigation takes time.   Collecting documentary/technical evidence takes time in cases and one can’t blame the police for delay in such cases.  I can offer my comments after thoroughly going through the cases.  All cases are narrated by in detail in the booklets given by DSS.  I will go through the material and follow up. 

Commenting on the financial frauds committed by cheaters, I have noticed in my service for the past 13 years, that criminals are able to cheat the other person by taking advantage of the greed in the other person.  For example, you know how difficult it is to earn a thousand rupees and how much hard work is needed to earn those thousand rupees, but when someone lures another to invest only Rs. 100 today to get thousand rupees tomorrow, people get tempted as they feel they can easily make money.   This greed in them makes them to give away Rs.100 and thereby get cheated and loose the Rs.100.  I have seen number of cases and this is my observation.   Everyone should realize that when someone offers easy money there will be deception in it.  So, you should never believe if someone offers a thing for 15% or 20%.   To desire to earn a thing easily without requisite efforts is wrong and it is nothing but dishonesty and trickery.    If we desire to make lot of money in short time, the other person easily can play on   our greed and exploit us by cheating.   You should know the ways in which cyber-crimes are taking place.

If you think of giving money to police for a work to be done, you can’t think positively.  In the PCR Cell we conduct review every month and the review is as per the prescribed format.  There are sometimes gaps when the atrocities section and IPC are not related.

Jhansi explained that ground realities are different and that, for FIRs are not registered in time due to pressures from the accused and I agree with her that ground realities are different.  Jhansi said that, except in major atrocities like Tsundur etc which attract the attention of the State/Nation, in every other case like these cases, FIR is not automatically registered.  Without persuasion and repeated demands FIRs are not registered.  I don’t deny the experiences of Jhansi at the field.

Referring to cheating in the name of love cases, the SP said that there are about 3000 such cases.  About 70% of rape cases are that of minor girls.  What is the reason for the girls to get easily deceived?  There is sexual abuse in all cases of cheating and rapes.  There are many pressures on the victims to turn hostile and it is necessary to probe in to it.

It is true that the IO is taking lot of trouble to get CC number after filing charge sheet and then cases are not moving further despite out efforts to close the cases before 2017.

The SP asked for details of cases where investigation is still not complete and other cases where police action is pending. 

In response to this, DSS produced the details of Ramesh Kumar land case, G. Swapna, V. Usha, K. Lakshmi, Kalpana etc.  DSS explained that in all these cases, the accused were not arrested and investigation not complete.

Then the SP assured that as per these details she will see that cases are speeded up.  When the parents of girls that committed suicide moaned uncontrollably, the SP assured them that she will speak to the concerned police officers and follow up the cases.  Responding to the cases where compensation is not paid yet, she immediately asked the concerned officer to look in to it.  She pitied the situation after listening to Munnamma murder case where no compensation was paid and the accused got bail.  With reference to Section 4, she said it is good to have a review of the matter. 

With regard to rape of minor girl Varshita and Nambamma cases, she assured to speak to the police higher ups and see that the accused are arrested.  She expressed that she told ACP to arrest the accused as such arrests will deter the criminals.

DSS explained about the case of Jhansi which took place in 2019, but there is no payment of compensation yet and no trial.  The victim is attending college.      Regarding the girls who are mothers of children, she advised them to be confident in life.

She advised that the victims should be given counselling and told them to stand up for justice and be confident.  She told them not to cry as crying will not erase the problem. 

She appreciated DSS for arranging this interaction and she thanked their office for sending her to this programme.  After listening to the victims, it is evident that it is women that are becoming victims of various crimes.  She extolled DSS for strengthening the victims and enhancing their confidence. 



Ms. Sri Vani, Public Prosecutor said that the percentage of conviction in the cases under SC, ST(PoA) Act is very low.  It is not more than 6 to 7%.  This is because in many cases the victims compromise after they receive 1st stage compensation and turn hostile.

Father of one victim by name Renuka who committed suicide, explained the agony and how her case has been pending for more than 13 years. He explained how many hurdles were put in accessing justice in his daughter’s case.  When the case was brought up to the notice of NHRC, the PP raised objections that her case doesn’t come under the SC, ST(PoA)Act.  This case was produced in the then Legal Clinic, which was published in the Hindu newspaper.  NHRC Suo motto took up the news item and held hearing.  Then DSS produced the case. 

As the accused was highly influential, they tried for stay in High Court and DSS got it vacated.  Then, the prosecution said the case files were missing and DSS supplied the relevant papers.  Still the case is pending.  Responding to these facts, the PP said it is highly pitiable that the case of Renuka has been pending for so long and assured to bring it to the notice of DoP and solve it. 

As there are more cases for each judge and there are a smaller number of judges, cases are being dragged on. She advised the girls cheated in the name of love to try alternative ways of living like learning tailoring etc.  She goaded them to concentrate on career and achieving financial stability.  

She appreciated DSS for the help being done to the victims.  She appreciated the SP also and said that her response is good and such officers are rare. 

Jhansi: There are many old cases pending for more than 10 years.  Triveni case is one such case pending for 10 years.  DoP is aware of these old cases and nothing is done.  There are many cases of cheating in the name of love and many of these girls are mothers of children and their situation is pitiable.  


Sri. Prakash said the important reason for compromise and hostile cases is that the court process is taking long time and this delay in court proceedings is causing lot of frustration to the victims.  Generally, the prosecution doesn’t pursue the cases.  They forget once the charge sheet is filed. 

He advised the girls to respect the words of parents and be in safe situation.  He mentioned that DSS has been doing these cases for the past 18 years.


Sri. Subhadra, Secretary, Women and Child Welfare, assured that her department will stand by the victims for their compensation and rehabilitation.  She explained the details of compensation to be paid for various atrocities.  She told them to contact her department any time through phone or mail. 




Sri. Siddoji Rao, cherished the support extended by DSS to all types of victims.  DSS would go to even the remotest villages and help the victim in accessing justice.  He recalled his association with DSS activities for the past 10 years.  He felt that if the police are a bit more sensitive, that would go a long way in helping the victims.  The police are not following rule of law. 

Referring to the cheating in the name of love cases he said, as per a survey, it is found that the males who indulge in sex before marriage are reluctant to marry.  You should shed the concept that marriage and husband are compulsory in life.  You should be able to lead life alone in a dignified manner.



Sri. Subbalaxmi, SCDD, told the gathering that during the past 2/3 years, they have paid compensation of 70 to 80 crores of rupees.  Referring to the cases presented she guaranteed to look in to them and see that compensation is paid to the victims. 



Sri. Padmaja Shaw, said:  I learnt a lot by attending today’s Legal Clinic.  You have all come and assembled here to assert your rights, which is highly appreciable.  You stand as a role model in your village, locality for struggling for your rights.  DSS has been supporting you and standing with you for so many years and I appreciate DSS for its commitment.  I call upon you all to stand for justice till the end. 



Sri. Khaleeda Parveen: It is a great learning experience for me and I learnt a lot in this meeting.  I will give counselling to victims of this type and stand by them.  I appeal to all of you to plan your livelihood and not to think too much about the case only.  The cases will go on as per their routine but you should concentrate on your life.  You should plan your career and education.  You should not think of inviting the fellow that cheated you on the other hand you should be relieved that the cheater left you and is no longer in your life.  Instead of crying, you should become bold and assertive. 


Sri. B. Manikyam:  Dr. B.R. Ambedkar was instrumental in enacting many laws for the benefit of women.  If all those laws are implemented properly the situation of women would have improved and their problems solved.  The efforts of DSS in supporting the women victims and gathering them here is a great exercise and I congratulate DSS for its efforts.   I appeal to all of you to muster confidence and courage to access justice.  It is necessary for all of us not to give scope for being cheated.    One should not keep on worrying all the time about the mistake committed.  It is over and we shouldn’t repeatedly bother any further about what happened.  It is necessary to forget the past and fall back into active life. 



Sri. Anjaneyulu:  The oppressive hierarchal caste system is the reason for all the atrocities committed on dalit women.   Please don’t keep on worrying about the cheating done to you.  Love is sacred, but these things are happening due to the caste system.  Simply because one person cheated you, you should not think that you are defeated in life.  You have long future and you should muster courage to lead a purposeful life.  You have to swim against the inequalities of caste and economic system and stand up to lead vibrant life.  

You should aim at financial independence and fight for justice in association with organizations like DSS.  You should thereby set an example for others and educate them not to get cheated.


Adv. Srinivas:  DSS has been doing this work for the past so many years, sometimes I am afraid if the work is going waste as there is no transformation in the society.  It is unfortunate that atrocities and cheatings are still taking place. 


Sri. Shoba: It is heart rending to listen to the woes of all these victims.  It is not correct to say that you were cheated in the name of love.  It is sad to see so many varieties of cheating are taking place in the society.  This society doesn’t support the sufferers, on the other hand the society further humiliates the victims.  You should be bold enough to face the onslaught of the society and stand up courageously for accessing justice.  Whatever happened has happened, it can’t be undone now, but you should take it as lightly as possible and proceed further.  The great service being done by DSS to the society is commendable. 


Adv. Narasimha: We will extend all our support to DSS.  You should be confident and stand up for justice.  Ultimately all of you will win with the support of DSS.  It is sad to note that the social order is getting spoiled and all felonious trends are coming up.  We should all take care in bringing up our children and all the parents should be educated about socializing and bringing up the children.

 It is sad to note that many of our children are not aware of Ambedkar and his life.  You should come out of worry of the cases and try to achieve economic stability in life.  DSS will take care of the cases.  It is important that you should equip yourself with knowledge and be more aware.


Sri. Ambika:  I congratulate all of you for your fighting spirit.  You are utilizing your education to struggle for rights.  You should know what is stated in the Preamble to our Constitution and try to apply it to your life.  Ambedkar visualized the caste oppression and provided the necessary articles for eradicating the caste oppression.  We should achieve the implementation of that spirit of constitution.

 Crying is not an answer for the cheating, achieving the rights and justice is the real answer for the cheating.   You should know that we are living in a society of caste and patriarchal oppression and assert our rights against all forms of oppression.

Jhansi Geddam:  I thank the SP for her active and sympathetic participation in this Legal Clinic and thank her for all the effective recommendations made by her.  The unfortunate reality of the society is that atrocities on women are increasing.  Some people are saying that the society is modernized and that no caste violence is taking place.  Such people are oblivious to the actual reality. 

The police are not recognizing the rights of victims in getting FIR and Charge Sheet and are not helpful to the victims.   Unless the special courts are established and cases prosecuted speedily, there will be no respite in the atrocities.  DSS is committed to stand with the victims till end. National Coordinator Satya and State Coordinator Renuka coordinating the cases.

Victims and Witnesses narrating their agony before the Jury:

 


7th December 2023

On 7th December 2023, 4 schools and 1 Slum in Medchal District were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Tagore High School, Gandhi Nagar, Medchal

2.      Government High School, Nehru Nagar, Medchal

3.      Chaithanya Vidyaniketan High School, Maqdoom Nagar, Medchal

4.      Bapuji High School, Srinivas Nagar, Medchal

5.      Maqdoom Nagar Slum, Medchal

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Renuka, State, Coordinator; Vasundara, Sujatha SWCs and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools and slums.


8th December 2023

On 8th December 2023, 4 schools and 1 College in Ranga Reddy District were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Government High School, Tolkatta

2.      Government High School, Gundala

3.      Government High School, Chenvelli

4.      Zilla Parishad High School, Tallapalli

5.      Government Junior College, Chevella

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Renuka, State, Coordinator; Lalaiah, Volunteer, Galaiah, Volunteer, Narsimha, Ex MPTC, Chenvelli and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools and colleges.


9th December 2023

On 9th December 2023, three residential institutions in Ranga Reddy District were covered as mentioned below:

1.      Telangana Social Welfare Residential Freedom School, Chevella

2.      Telangana Social Welfare Residential School, Bantvaram

3.      Telangana Social Welfare Residential Degree College, Vikarabad

Jhansi Geddam, National Convenor of DSS; Jabali Amancherla, National Coordinator; Renuka, State, Coordinator; Lalaiah, Volunteer, Galaiah, Volunteer, Narsimha, Ex. MPTC, Chenvelli and few more women collective leaders participated in these schools and colleges.


Gender Campaign - Schools, Colleges and Hostels

In all the above educational institutions Jhansi Geddam narrated about the significance of the UN Gender campaign which is carried on every year throughout the world. The UN Women titled this campaign as ’16 days activism’ which means sensitizing the society to end all forms of discrimination against women. These 16 days activism commences on 25th November of every year and ends on Human Rights Day i.e., 10th December of every year. She gave details of various forms of violence going on the society and such violence is more pronounced on dalit women and girl children. She made the children and youth understand the position of women in this gender discriminated society by taking examples from household activities.

She spoke about the vicious culture that has been spreading rampantly in the children and teenagers which is due to movies and media. Imitating the film heros by passing comments on teachers and girls or saying out the dialogues from the films are some of the bad influences of movies on the present-day youth. In an age where they should be loved and adored by teachers and their parents, youth are falling into the trap of so-called “love” from the movies. At such a tender age, children are exposed to pornography, drugs, violence etc which has a devastating effect on their life. The entire society is affected by the kind of children that is being brought up in the present generation. Education should be primary goal in shaping a child’s life and career. Awareness about the good and bad paths in the society will give children clarity of what life can be by choosing a good path rather than spoiling by choosing a bad one.

She further explained the children about the traditions which dictate the gender roles and the need to come out of stereo types of gender roles and understanding. Not only social practices, even the educational curriculum teaches that father is head of the family and that mother cooks food for the family. Whenever a mother needs to go out, she has to take permission from the father, but the father never asks for permission from mother to go out of the house. Certain chores like sweeping, washing utensils, cooking, bringing water etc are considered as womanly and from the childhood it is done by girls. In the family itself from the childhood, daughters are assigned the tasks of sweeping the house and washing the utensils while the sons are allowed to play outside. If anyone tries to break the stereotype and tries to set out an example, the neighboring families would make fun of them. For example, in any household if a man or his son starts cooking or cleans the utensils, they would make fun of him by calling names. She mentioned that all these stereotypes are embedded in the society and it needs continuous awareness from the very childhood to break them free from those shackles. The children were impressed about the need to dump these stereotype roles and backward concept of looking at some chores as low and womanly. They were impressed about the need to achieve equality of women in every sphere for rapid growth of the country and for a better future. She told that now the older people can’t be changed but children should understand and change and grow as modern citizens.

She also mentioned that most of the time the teachers and parents limit themselves to paying attention to marks, ranks and studies of the children. Nobody is investing time to train the children in moral values and responsible behaviour. It is of utmost and urgent need to train the children and educate them on values and the need to be part of nation building. It is necessary to educate the children about basic gender concepts and inspire them towards simple living and high thinking. With this idea in the background, DSS always trains the children on gender, national and constitutional values in a manner which they can understand.

Jhansi Geddam, motivated the children at every school to study well and aim at becoming a high lever officer like IAS/IPS officers. Only when a high position is achieved one can contribute to the society and eradicated inequalities. The children in every school were told about the POCSO Act and the dangers of indulging in deviant behaviour.  She warned the children how dangerous it would be if the children get addicted to bad habits. If anyone indulges in deviant behaviour and get involved in police cases, their future will be spoiled, hence it is necessary to adhere to school discipline. She thanked the heads of all educational institutions for arranging the children for this campaign. These heads not only arranged for the campaign but, they also actively participated and they educated the children about gender. The children were inspired to study well and with education only the differences on the basis of caste, religion etc can be eradicated.

The heads of the institutions appreciated DSS and Jhansi Geddam for conducting the gender campaign and told the children to follow the ideas explained to them by Jhansi Geddam.

Gender Campaign – Slums and Villages

Jhansi Geddam spoke about the importance of Gender Campaign and its relevance in the present day. She narrated about the significance of the UN Gender campaign which is carried on every year throughout the world. The UN Women titled this campaign as ’16 days activism’ which means sensitizing the society to end all forms of discrimination against women. These 16 days activism commences on 25th November of every year and ends on Human Rights Day i.e., 10th December of every year. She gave details of various forms of violence going on the society and such violence is more pronounced on dalit women and girl children. In the society, women is considered as 2nd class citizen and subjected to work load, low payments for the work and sexual exploitation/harassment. They are denied their equitable share in all natural and economic resources. Hence it is necessary to sensitize the society on this gender discrimination and motivate the women and girl children to face all challenges and march ahead. These 16 days vigorous gender campaign is conducted in towns, villages, slums, schools and colleges to increase awareness of all on gender oppression and the need to achieve gender equality. She pointed out the deep-rooted traditions in perpetuating gender inequality.

She elucidated the gender norms and their reinforcement in socialization within the home, society, and educational curriculum. Boys are free to roam around and play, and they attend private schools, while girls are trained to perform household tasks like sweeping and washing utensils at home and are sent to government schools.  Girls are not allowed to continue their education beyond high school, and many get married before they turn eighteen. More and more child marriages are taking place among the Dalits, backward castes of rural areas.  In addition to oppression, discrimination many girls are being cheated in the name of love.  Male youth are seducing girls, many minor girls and sexually exploiting them by promising marriage and abandoning them after some time.  The number of such instances of cheating is increasing.  In a number of such cases, the girl is made pregnant and abandoned. These girls go through terrible struggles since they are shunned by their families and society and are a source of shame.   Due to a lack of cooperation from the police and judiciary, the majority of these girls do not receive any legal relief, compensation or rehabilitation.  Realizing all of these facets of discrimination and gender oppression it is essential to educate women and girls about gender issues and create awareness. She briefed the gathering about how DSS team is campaigning at all levels and in schools and colleges.   She stressed the need for continuous gender education and at levels including school curriculum.


10th December 2023:

Concluding day of the Gender Campaign- Human Rights Day

The “16 days activism” of gender campaign was concluded a seminar on Human Rights.   With the emergence of rightist government everywhere, there is a growing trend of talking against human rights, particularly the rights of women, DSS felt it is necessary to discuss these trends.  Hence, DSS selected the topic “Human Rights-One Step Forward and Two Steps Backward” for the Human Rights Day. The seminar was conducted at Ambedkar Resource Centre, Samrat Commercial Complex, Lakadika Pool.  The seminar focused on the deteriorating human rights situation and the negative trends in the human rights protection.  The seminar was chaired by Ms. Jhansi Geddam.  Dr Vinod Kumar, Ambassador, Sri. PSN Murthy, Retd. IDAS, Sri. Venkata Reddy, National Coordinator, MV Foundation, Sri. Sasi Kala, Regional Manager, SBI, Sri. Sadiq Ali, Advocate and Founder of Sadiq Foundation, Dr. Siddoji Rao, Convener, IAS/IPS Officers Forum, Sri. Sobha, Lecturer, Sathya, National Coordinator, Renuka, State Coordinator and District coordinators of DSS participated in the seminar.  Women Collective leaders of DSS from various villages and women from Hyderabad enthusiastically participated in the seminar. 


Ms. Jhansi Geddam, in her opening speech explained about the importance of UN gender campaign every year and how DSS carried on the campaign in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana by conducting meetings in villages, slums, schools, colleges and hostels.  DSS conducted Round Table Conference and Legal Clinic also by arranging interaction of women victims of atrocities and concerned officials in A.P. and Telangana.  Through these Legal Clinics about 70 victims of various atrocities could present their problems in accessing justice.  She said only when the downtrodden enjoy human rights constitution will have meaning in their lives.  She said that constitutional rights of dalit/Adivasi women are flouted with impunity and the legal system is not functioning in the desired way, due to caste prejudices among the personnel operating the system.  Apart from prejudices, most of the concerned personnel are ignorant of the law, particularly the amended SC, ST (PoA) Act and this is another reason for failure in rendering justice to the dalit/Adivasi women and girl children. 


Sri. PSN Murthy, observed that human rights are intertwined with the daily life of every human being.  Life has grown and transformed from single cell to trillions of cells and now reached the present form of human being.  Life has three important characteristics, namely, growth to full potential, diversification and reproduction.   Every person should be able to lead life to his/her full capacity i.e. growth in all its aspects.  For this reason, of all the human rights, Right to Life is basic right.     Every other human right is linked to right to life.  Human rights are essential for the growth of all individuals.  Even before the human rights are recognized and declared by the UN system, in India, Jyothi Rao Phule and Ambedkar struggled and achieved victories in asserting the human rights of the oppressed and downtrodden.  Without human rights there can’t be any growth of the society.  For full growth of an individual nutritious food is a need.  But 68% of people are not able to have nutritious food even after 75 years of independence.  He pointed out that health, nutritious food and medical care are as much human rights and in today’s situation poorer sections are not able to access medical care. There is no chance of poorer sections getting medical care in corporate hospitals and in the government hospitals there is lack of everything.

We should learn about all aspects of society and for this it is necessary to have education.  Hence education is necessary for knowledge but also for having skills for employment for earning.  But there are no jobs for all now, on the other hand there is a prediction that half of the present jobs will no longer be needed and there is no scope for jobs for the educated.   Hence it is necessary to study and be educated but also know that they will not have jobs.  Everyone should be ready for self-employment.   Future appears to be very bleak. In the coming days there will be lot of deprivation leading to mass scale deaths of downtrodden people.  I am talking all this with regard to right to life.  One can imagine about other rights.

Sri. Venkata Reddy, felt that the burden of human rights violation percolates down to the downtrodden and women only.  He explained about an incident where in a slum a woman was crying nearby the house when her mother died as she had no place to sit and weep in the house.  Woman are subjected to continuous suffering in all aspects of daily life.  We know many children absent to the school as they get terrified due to horrendous domestic violence by their drunken father on their mother.  There are no sufficient schools and even bare facilities in the school.  The magnitude and multifarious facets of suffering of the downtrodden women and children.  We continuously interact with the downtrodden in villages and slums and we know the meticulous details of the story of peoples suffering which is wretched.  Is it the responsibility of the people to document and represent their sufferings?  It is the responsibility of the government and rulers to solve all these problems and suffering

of the people.  It is the responsibility of the concerned people’s representative to know the situation and discharge his responsibility to solve it.

 

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar laid down in the constitution that it is the responsibility of the governments to take care of all aspects of human rights of people.  People should question the government and pressurize the government to discharge its duties.  You appear to be having the requisite knowledge and capability to educate others and question the government on issues.  We see in villages that whenever a male person dies, the concerned widow is given pension and government claims that it has helped the distressed woman.  But unfortunately, the reason for death and the ways to prevent such deaths is not probed into.  It is noticed that many youngsters are dying chiefly due to liquor habit.  Who is responsible for promoting liquor consumption?  Is it not necessary to rectify the situation which is driving youth to turn as alcoholics and end up in early death due to liver and other problems arising out of being alcoholic?  Likewise, why children are not in schools? It is due to lack of schools, lack of toilets in schools, lack of teachers and teachers who terrify the children. I can illustrate about a school in a slum in Secunderabad.  This slum is called Ambedkar Nagar and it has only one school there with only one-woman teacher. There are no toilets in the school and the teacher as well as the students do not take lunch in that school to avoid going to toilet.  If they eat lunch and consume water, they have to go for urination after sometime and for this reason all the children and teacher don’t take lunch as there is no facility for urination.  Officers of the Government are paid salaries and given facilities to serve the people and we should be able to demand them to serve us.  I can say that except DSS there is no sincere organization working for the protection of human rights of dalit/Adivasi women.


Sri Sasi Kala, said:  We all need first food, shelter and clothes.  We all got our rights due to the efforts of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.  We all should work sincerely and discharge our duties efficiently.  I belong to ST but my recognition due to my sincere work.  It is important that we should not misuse our rights.  If a mistake is committed it is a mistake irrespective of whether it is committed by males or females.  As women we have right to complain to the police and seek redressal if our rights are violated, but there are instances where some women are misusing these provisions and filing false cases. 


Sri. Vinod Kumar, Ambassador, appreciated DSS for its continuous efforts in protecting the human rights of dalit/Adivasi women.  In 1948 the UN adopted Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  We completed 75 years of independence.  He said Dr. B.R. Ambedkar put lot of efforts to draft the constitution in such a way to protect the rights of citizens.  But our human rights will be protected only when the people develop the attitude of questioning the rulers.  He lauded the efforts of Ambedkar in providing various rights to the downtrodden people of the country.  He said it is necessary to train our children about human rights.  Right to life is an important right and we find that this right is violated frequently.  In addition to right to life, right to equality, right to freedom of expression are important rights.  We should work hard and achieve equality.  You should be role model for your children.  All of you should be ready to struggle for life and dignity in the days to come.  In future, there is no scope of getting government jobs and we should train our children to be self-reliant.  He appealed to the audience to spread awareness of Constitution and Human Rights among the public. 



Sri. Siddoji Rao, appreciated DSS for carrying out 16 days activism.  Rights means only those that we require and those we justly deserve for our needs.  Every individual is unique and equal.  Dr. B.R. Ambedkar made us part of the system.  We should recognize the rights of others and discharge our responsibility to see that others enjoy their rights.  Rights are to be enjoyed collectively and we should do our duties so that we can enjoy our rights.  We should shed the mentality of domination and suppressing others and derive sadistic pleasure.  We should develop positive attitude towards our immediate friends and educate them through our conduct, instead of criticizing them or dominating them.  It is important to realize that discharging responsibility is more important so that we can enjoy our rights properly.  But we think of rights more and forget responsibilities.  He cited the illustration of one family in which all are having good physique and are good artists with attractive personality and talents.  In such family there was one person who was not good looking and not having good education and artistic capabilities.  He was ignored by all other members of the family and even humiliated.  But in course of time, he took up his incapacity as a challenge and learnt dance and artistic talents.  He did this with commitment and hard work and soon surpassed everyone else in the family.  This proves that if we develop, we get our rights automatically. Thus, it is necessary for all of us to grow and develop our capabilities so that we get respected and we can enjoy our rights.   


Sri. Sadiq Ali, said: If we are hurt in anyway, it means our rights are violated.  One child demanded that he wants a mother who is not beaten by his father.  In our society we accepted that a husband can beat his wife.  Suppose I beat my wife and she is hurt so much that she transfers that frustration on the child and beats the child.  We accepted this also where parents can beat the child.  When the child goes to the school, there the teacher beats the child on the pretext of homework.  Later, even on a small pretext the child fights another child in the school.  Thus, we see continuous violation of rights.  Suppose a child who is beaten regularly and brought up like that becomes an SI when grown up.  What would be the behaviour of that SI?  This SI tortures the suspect.  Thus, you can see what type of society we are building up through our socialization. 

Regarding our rights we should learn to question the politicians, government officers to protect our rights.  We should be able to demand the government officers to treat us equally when we approach them.  But now the officers treat us as if they are high and we are beggars seeking their help.  They don’t offer us seat to sit and humiliate us.  We should develop the idea that they are our servants.  We should be able to say that the Collector is our servant, MLA is our servant and Chief Minister also as our servant.  They are designated as ‘public servants’ which means our servant.  This is what B.R. Ambedkar told.   He said rights are not alms to be given but achieved through demand and struggle.   We simply talk about Ambedkar and garland his photo and forget him in practice.  We should make Ambedkar as part of our daily life.


Sobha, said: Women bear all burdens including child rearing. It is not true that wives retaliate when husband beats her.  Mostly the women bear the domestic violence on her.  It is necessary for women to become economically self-reliant.  As part of growing rights discourse, it is considered as a crime if parents beat their child or a teacher beats the students.  It is true that children should not be beaten unnecessarily but it is also not correct to say that children should not be punished in schools or at home. 

During our school days we used to study more and complete homework of those teachers who would beat if we don’t study.  We should learn to question the government for our rights and we should do whatever we can to others.  We may not be able to sacrifice as was done by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, but we should be able to do our minimum contribution in our immediate society.  Unless we do our bit, we can’t protect or enjoy our rights. 


Jhansi Geddam, spoke about the need to educate the women and transform them as leaders.  She thanked everyone who co-operated in the 16 days activism.


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