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Corona and Domestic Violence By – Navneet Pant

Lockdowns due to Corona pandemic has drastically decreased the rate of crime in the world. But there is an unusual increase in domestic crime rates in lock down days.

There are reports of doubling of the numbers from many countries and there is a sudden spike in calls on domestic help line numbers across the world.

On April 6, UN Chief Antonio Guterres called for measures to address “Horrifying Global Surge in domestic violence” directed towards women and girls linked to lockdowns due to Corona pandemic. What must have led to this concern of UN is 20 to 30 per cent increase in calls on domestic help lines according to reports in The Guardian News Paper..?

In India we are seeing almost double the increase in the rate of domestic violence ever since the country went under lockdown since March 24. According to National Commission of Women, there were 239 complaints received between March 23 and April 16 through emails and Whatsapp. This is almost double to 123 complaints received for the period of 25 days between February 27 to March 22.

It has been more than a month in India that people are confined to their homes which is leading to various frustrations. Joblessness and lack of money or pressure of domestic work and working from home and demands of coping with living together day in and day out without any respite is leading to small petty issues resulting into violent actions.

Lock down is posing various challenging situations to the families. In an incident in Etah district of Uttar Pradesh, a frustrated daughter-in-law poisoned the entire family before killing herself.

There are also awkward incidents due to expectations from the partners from each other which is resulting into serious violent incidents. A wife in Gaziabad district of Uttar Pradesh was so much frustrated with her husband’s continuous stay in the house that she started harassing him for which the husband had to take help of police. This couple has been married for 13 years happily but now due to differences they are cooking their separate food.

Issues like increase in demands for sex during lockdown too is becoming a cause for serious cases of violence among the married couples.

According to Dr Manisha Singhal lock downs has forced people to live together with the families which are usually running around to meet the demands of hectic lives. This poses challenging situations to the families where members otherwise lead independent lives besides maintaining a happy relationships. Living together under a roof for longer duration poses new demands and insecurities which families are not able to cope with. Where in people start pointing out at the mistakes of their family members which usually can be ignored.

To meet these challenging times counsellor suggest couples to maintain a routine during lockdown period and distribute the household chores. It is also important to maintain a healthy lifestyle and stay calm.

(The views expressed in the article belong solely to the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion, beliefs and view point of the owners of asiannewsmakers.com)

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