GUWAHATI, Sept 29 - North East Network, a women�s rights organisation working in Assam and Meghalaya, has published the Assamese version of a report�on domestic violence in rural Assam. The report, Ashrut (unheard) is supposed to help in bringing about much needed awareness on domestic violence in rural Assam.
NEN�has always engaged with stakeholders,�who include the police, mediapersons, lawyers, youths and others to promote and protect women�s rights. Recently, the organisation collaborated with the Assam Police HQ to organise an orientation workshop on violence against women and new laws�for active members. At the workshop, 18 women and 19 men belonging to village defence parties from ten districts of Assam were given basic training on new laws ensuring women�s rights.
The certificate programme for two days was conducted here. The workshop was inaugurated by Leena Doley, Additional Superintendent of Police. Resource persons at the workshop included Devyani Bokotoki and�Anurita Pathak of�NEN, Nilanju Dutta, legal activist and Navneet Mahanta, Additional SP. Sessions included building conceptual clarity on gender and understanding violence against women from a woman�s rights viewpoint.
It included awareness generation on the new laws for women, namely, Protection of Children from Sexual Offence Act (POCSO), Criminal Law (Amendment Act),�Assam Witch Hunting Act, Domestic Violence Act, human trafficking laws and schemes, gaps and challenges faced by village defence parties (VDP) with respect to handling women�s issues.
�It was important to conduct a gender sensitisation workshop for VDPs as they are a strong community policing force and assist the police in checking crimes. Crimes against women are on the rise in Assam. According to the National Crime Records Bureau, 17,449 cases were registered in Assam in 2013 against 13,544 cases in 2012.�The vigilantes are easily accessible to communities and hence, they can promptly respond to women in difficult situations. Therefore, it was pertinent to train them on women�s issues related to violence and abuse,� said a NEN statement.