BHUBANESWAR: Sexual harassment and domestic violence have become accepted norms in today’s society while there has been a rise in women trafficking. These� social evils continue notwithstanding the implementation of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence (PWDV) Act, 2005 , Prohibition of Child Marriage (PCM) Act, 2006 and Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, 1994 - the three women-friendly laws.
�The issues were highlighted by government officials and members of various women’s organisations at a regional conference (eastern India) on effective implementation of women-friendly laws, held here on Monday. Representatives from Orissa, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Jharkhand attended.
�Director (Social Welfare), Women & Child Development Department, Sujata Kartikeyan spoke about the loopholes in the provisions. “Such social evils are more prevalent in urban and semi-urban areas than in the rural hinterlands which is an indication that� education alone cannot put an end to these problems. Awareness is the key word here,” Kartikeyan said.
�Additional Director of the Department, Chhattisgarh, SK Pandey emphasised on the difficulties in collecting evidence for proving violation of the PCPNDT Act.
He suggested sensitisation programmes and� monitoring of doctors and other medical professionals for curbing sex determination tests.� State Women’s Commission Chairperson Jyoti Panigrahi discussed the proactive role of government in providing immediate relief to the women.
Major recommendations for effective implementation of these laws included, sensitising the judiciary on gender issues and women-friendly laws, enforcing compulsory registration of births, marriages and deaths, especially in remote rural areas, ensuring property rights for women and greater role of law enforcement to curb the evil practices.� The conference was organised by Delhi-based organisation ISD & Women Power Connect, in collaboration with the National Commission for Women and Orissa-based Institute of Social Development.