One of the most frequent, yet largely unrecognized, forms of violence against women worldwide is domestic abuse. Domestic violence is, first and foremost, a human rights issue as it is associated with health, legal, economic, educational, and developmental concerns. According to WHO, one in three women worldwide may experience physical or sexual abuse at some point in their lives, usually at the hands of an intimate partner. In recent decades, there has been a remarkable increase in violence against women in India, as both domestic and foreign journalists have reported.
In India, domestic violence is ubiquitous. Domestic violence is any pattern of abusive behavior that negatively impacts a person in an intimate partner relationship. It also includes any actions that humiliate, intimidate, coerce, threaten, blame, or harm a person.
According to statistics, the National Commission for Women received 30,900 reports of various crimes against women in 2022, 6,900 of which involved domestic violence against women. In comparison to 2021, there were more rape, dowry harassment, and domestic violence complaints in 2022.
Types of domestic violence
Physical Abuse: slapping, hitting, pulling hair
Sexual Abuse: marital rape, sexual contact, forced sex
Emotional Abuse: harming a women’s sense of self-worth or damaging one's relationship with her children
Economic Abuse: Controlling or unfairly using women’s economic resources, including money, assets, and credit,
Psychological Abuse: causing fear by intimidation; threatening physical harm
Technological Abuse: harass, exploit, extort or monitor women by using any form of technology, including but not limited to internet-enabled devices, online spaces, or any means of high-end technologies
Causes of domestic violence
There are certain causes of domestic violence i.e.
Conflicts with their intimate partner
Men's superiority complex or the rise of anger,
Poverty, unemployment, or financial issues
Religious sanctifications show a subdued sort of dominance over women
Humiliation brought on by challenges at work, other evident downfalls
The desire for a male kid is among the cultural factors that contribute to domestic violence.
Extra-marital affairs or lack of trust
Effects of domestic violence
Physical consequences of violence might include small wounds or life-threatening conditions. The short-term effects may include bruises, cuts, shattered bones, or wounds to internal organs and other body components. Without scans, x-rays, or other tests carried out by a doctor or nurse, it can be difficult or impossible to see some physical ailments.
Long-term verbal abuse may have an impact on the woman's and children's moods in their daily activities and may also decrease productivity.
Children who grow up with violence subconsciously registered as a normal part of their life are those who come from homes where the father beats up or abuses the mother. These children always may feel fearful and anxious or suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression in the future. Moreover, their actions and attitudes toward other members of society are affected.
Law for domestic violence in India
The 1983 Criminal Law Act added section 498A, "Spouse or relative of husband of a woman treating her to cruelty," which addressed domestic violence on a legal level. Physical or sexual abuse of Indian women, usually by a man, is considered violence against women in India. The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005; the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act; and the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act are three pieces of legislation that address violations of women's rights across India. The Indian Penal Code (IPC) provides certain sections with the legal situation of violence against women in India.
Where to find help- Resources for Indian Women
National Commission for Women Helpline (7827170170)
Women Helpline Domestic Abuse (181)
Central Social Welfare Board -Police Helpline ((011-23317004)
Domestic Violence Helpline (1800 212 9131)
Nari Raksha Samiti ((011- 23973949)
Aks Foundation and Neo-Gandhian Aid Organizations India helpline ( 8793088814)
Abhay helpline (09423827818)
Shakti Shalini (9711053706)
All India Women's Conference (011-23389680)
Ashraya Women’s Centre (918025251929)
Society for Nutrition, Education and Health Action (SNEHA) (91 9833092463)
Nirmal Niketan (011-27859158)
RAHI Recovering and Healing from Incest. A support centre for women survivors of child sexual abuse (011-26238466)
SHEROES - The Women-Only Social Network for online counseling session
Sexual Assault in the Workplace - helpingsurvivors.org/workplace-sexual-assault/