World Health Organisation (WHO) has said that cases of domestic violence across the globe have seen a spike amid lockdowns. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of WHO has asked countries to take measures to curb the menace of domestic violence. "There is never any excuse for violence," said Ghebreyesus.
"Sadly there are reports from some countries of an increase in domestic violence since the COVID-19 outbreak began. As people are asked to stay at home, the risk of intimate partner violence is likely to increase. We call on countries to include services for addressing domestic violence as an essential service that must continue during the COVID-19 response. If you are experiencing or are at the risk of domestic violence, speak to supportive family and friends, seek support from a hotline or seek out local services for survivors," he said.
He also asked domestic violence victims to save themselves anyway they can. "Make a plan to protect yourself and your children, any way you can. This could include having a neighbour, friend, relative or shelter identified to go to should you need to leave the house immediately. There is never any excuse for violence," added Ghebreyesus.
Sadly, there are reports from of an increase in domestic violence since the #COVID19 outbreak began. We call on countries to include services to #EndViolence as an essential service that must continue during the response. There is never any excuse for violence. pic.twitter.com/Z4MQN0JwRf- Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (@DrTedros) April 4, 2020
In India too, there has been a rise in domestic violence cases as the country undergoes the 21-day lockdown. National Commission for Women chairperson Rekha Sharma said that they have received 257 complaints since the lockdown started till April 2, out of which 69 were domestic violence.
Sharma also said that the number must be higher and that women are unable to complain. "Women are not approaching the police because they think that if they take her husband away, the in-laws would be torturing her. Because of the lockdown, women are not able to reach out to the police. They don't even want to go to the police because they are afraid that once their husband comes out of the police station, he will again torture her and she can't even move out. Earlier women could go to their parents place but now they are unable to reach. The NCW is in touch with these complainants," she said.
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