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Lodh 1

Kriti Lodh
Ms. Thompson
AP Lang, Block 2, Skinny A
February 18, 2015
Draft #1
The Barrier to Political and Social Progress in India: Domestic Violence
From country to country the inferiority of women has been a predominant trait that can
be noted from history, and it still appears as if the belief that women belong under the hand of
their male counterpart exists. A pressing issue throughout the world happens to be the act of
committing crimes against women, especially in the form of domestic violence, which is the
most prominent crisis detrimental to the society of India. Since domestic abuse is a faulty
contribution to the nation of India, there are negative repercussions that are conducive to the
demise and exponential downfall of societal factors in the country. With this information in
mind, it has come to the attention of all that this is a growing hinderance to India as she cannot
prosper socially, politically, and economically as well as gain respect from the eyes of the world
around. Questions that strike the minds of all when pondering over the situation of domestic
violence in India include, “What are the reasons for which husband’s and their families feel the
need to target these womens attempting to pin them like darts to a dartboard?”, “What ideologies
do they support that make them believe that what they are doing is moral?”, “What do the
statistics prove about the commonality of domestic violence and in which regions it is
predominant?”, “What methods are women abiding by in order to overcome these obstacles of
brutal torture?”, and “ What things are the government and people of the world doing to aid in
this dire situation and what more can be done to help India get back on her feet and climb up?”

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By addressing these concerns of why is this abuse occurring and how to overcome this
oppression, hand in hand India can make an effort to conquer the reign of domestic violence that
has left India and her women in the shadows of despair.
As of 2013, reports claim of approximately 309,546 reported cases of crimes against
women in which over one third of these occurrences were completed through the means of
domestic abuse. “Deciphering the majority of domestic violence situations in further detail, it can
be duely noted that “From 50,703 in 2003, the number of reported cases has gone up to 118,866
in 2013 - an increase of 134% over 10 years, far out-stripping the rise in population over the
same period.Campaigners say that could be because the Indian government brought in a new law
in 2005 to protect women against violence at home and more women are coming out to seek
help.” (Pandey). The discovered cases continue to be accelerating forward as the numbers
multiply, however this is not due to the fact that domestic violence is on the rise, but rather it is
because of the increase in women willing to seek aid for their suffering. That being said, it is
virtuous that a greater population of women are acquiring the assistance they crave, however, on
the other hand, it seems absurd that even after the law being passed in 2005, there is still an
exponential swell. “Although this variety of maltreatment can be distinguished worldwide, there
is something idiosyncratic about domestic violence in India which can be understood in the
following statements, “Domestic violence is not unique to India. It occurs around the world, but
what sets it apart in India from many other countries is the culture of silence that still surrounds
it. When Aditi sought help from her mother, she received little sympathy. "I told my mum that
this is what I'm going through, there was a time when I showed her bruises on my legs, I told her
about the fact that my husband had forced himself upon me. And she just said, how can you say
this about yourself? How can you say this about him? You just need to live with it, you need to

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endure it. You do whatever it takes to make your marriage work." (Pandey). The culture of India
teaches young women that divorce is not a viable option. Regardless of how negative the
repercussions are, it is not a social norm to divorce or separate once two people have been wed.
As unfortunate as it is for a mother not to seek help in a situation like this, it is because of the
influences of society; if they were to disjoin then society would view Aditi and her family as
inferior thus causing them to be shunned. Why is domestic violence still on the rise we wonder.
Well, a correlation can be found between the fear and pressure in society against women leaving
their husbands and the immense abuse.
A question that many people deliberate in the context of domestic violence is where it all begins,
and the answer to that is none other than: at home. In regard to social and cultural norms in India,
it can be noted that, “It is difficult and potentially misleading to make a culture-based argument
about the problems that women face in India because of the size and diversity of the country.
There is no one culture that is either exclusively Indian, or covers the whole population residing
within its borders. Generalizations that ignore even one percent of the population leave more
than ten million people out of the calculation. Thus the situation of women varies within India.
Especially women from the north-eastern provinces as well as in the south tend to be in a better
position. Their share of the female work force, especially in the service sector seems to be quite
high. Moreover, they are considered to be more visible and active in the public sphere. Moreover
regressive social codes that disproportionately penalize women are not unique to India, and have
been a social hurdle in all countries when it came to extending political, legal, and economic
rights to women.” (John, Ahamd, Schneider). Depending on the area in which women reside
results in how beneficial and uprising their future will be. Areas where traditional cultural norms
are practiced are the places where many tend to be mistreated. This includes areas like villages

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where many remain to be uneducated and are taught that taking care of the home and the
husband are where they are meant to be. If women are to object, defy, or simply make a mistake,
the wrath of the husband and his family are taken out on her. Statistically speaking, “Some
numbers clearly indicate a large problem in Indian society’s attitude of women at the macro
level. According to the 2011 census the sex ratio between men and women indicates 940 women
to a 1000 men which is a definite improvement over the 2001 census where the ratio was
933:1000. However, India still has one of the lowest sex ratios on the world with approximately
35 million women "missing". The highest number of missing women at birth is in the northwestern states of Punjab, Rajasthan and Haryana, etc. Research indicates that 12% of this gap is
found at birth which increased to 25% in childhood1. (John, Ahamd, Schneider). These issues
seem to elevate from birth. It is almost as if inferiority of women are positioned upon them prior
to birth, as a majority of India remains to believe that men are more worthwhile causing many to
give away their daughters or merely look down upon them and be disappointed by them their
whole lives. Again, this is more predominant in areas where small villages are common because
these are the regions where education, economic status, and political reign are poor.
With the previous statistics and facts stated, it can be concluded that although India is on
the uprise of guiding women to stand up and speak out in order to survive despite of their
grueling pasts, there is still a copious amount of room for improvement and aid. Thinking of
those 309,546 women, those being the only reported cases with tens of thousands occurring
without the knowledge of others, it truly puts things into perspective and illustrates how behind
certain areas of India still are in development. This can be noted from the notion that women still
belong under the hand of a man rather than hand in hand to celebrate equality and
liberty. Suffering with burns, cuts, and mauled limbs, these women are attempting to jump over

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hurdles that most could not dream of. Although India is not the only country in which women
seem to be receiving such maltreatment, it does seem to be a cultural issue that is hindering the
country from prospering politically, socially, and economically as it demeans her status in the
eyes of others.
Even though this is a cultural problem, there are many from India that are aware of how
to respect and treat a woman, and those are the real men. A true man is not one who holds a
woman against her will, forcing her… beating her… killing her… with the expectation of love in
return because the evil it does is interminable.