Nearly 30% of married Indian women face domestic violence, shows data

The bare statistics are always extraordinary and condign punishment a rare sighting for survivors (often silent or silenced) of domestic abuse

BS Reporter

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According to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS), 2019-2021, “29.3 per cent of married Indian women between the ages of 18 and 49 have experienced domestic/sexual violence; 3.1 per cent of pregnant women aged 18 to 49 have suffered physical violence during their pregnancy.”
That is only the number of cases reported by women; there are frequently many more that never make it to the police.

In 2021, just 507 instances were registered across India under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, whereas 136,000 complaints were registered under Indian Penal Code Section 498A (cruelty by husband or his relatives).
According to NFHS data, 87 per cent of married women who are victims of marital violence do not seek help.

The United Nations defines gender-based violence as “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual, or mental harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life”.
The National Commission for Women said in 2020-21, it received 26,513 complaints from women, an increase of 25.09 per cent, compared with the 20,309 complaints registered in 2019-20, testifying to the global trend that during the pandemic, more women were victims of domestic violence than before.

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Sources: National Family Health Survey, media reports


First Published: May 14 2023 | 10:52 PM IST

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