Thursday, May 28, 2015

Report from June, 2015 to September, 2015

1.     Planning
2.     Follow up
3.      Developing the IEC material
4.      Meeting of the MJK sexual harassment complaint committee
5.      Conducting meeting of  NIRBHAYA women’s Network
6.      Participation in workshop on GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT
7.      Our intervention in the sexual harassment cases in Patna
      Minakshi Case
      Rajda Case
8.      Meeting with victims
9.      Taking action in their cases
10.      Providing them legal aid and counseling
11.       Monitoring and project management: Staff meeting
12.       Problems
13.        Achievements

In the month of June we discussed about the planning of 2014-15 the Chief functionary of the organization and other members associated with the project: Mr. Rupesh, Mr. Bhushan Prasad and Ms. Babita. We discussed about the achievement of last year and shared our plan for this year. We designed the frame work of this year after the discussion.
2. Follow up
In the Follow-up activity we reached all the institutions which were covered in the survey and they did not make ICC till now. During the follow-up process, a humble request was made through letters to the institutions where the survey was covered to form a sexual harassment complaint committee. The request has been made to form the committee as soon as possible according to the guidelines provided in the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) act, 2013. The Project Coordinator after taking the appointment with the head of the institutions had held a series of meetings with them and after orientating them about the need of implementing the sexual harassment laws, she requested them to form sexual harassment complaint committee at their workplace. She also briefed them the lawful procedure to form the committee at their workplaces. So far, five institutions have provided us the written information in this regard.
She tried to covered ICICI insurance, Frazer road, Rajkiya Balak Madhya Vidyalay, Amla toil, Ayurvedic Collage, Budh Murti, Patna, Bihar Mahila Samakhya Society, Gandhi maidan, Patna, St. Xevier’s School, Gandhi Maidan, Patna and Arvind Mahila Collage, Dinkar Golambar, Patna, Red Cross Society, near Gandhi maidan, IPTA, exhibition road, Hotel Chanakya, near R Block, Hotel Morya, near Gandhi maidan, Premchand Rangshala, near Rajendar nagar stadium, Bank of Baroda, boring canal road, Allahabad Bank, near kotwali thana and got good response from St. Xavier’s School, IPTA, Red Cross Society, Mahila Samakhya, They are trying to form the committee as soon as possible. Mahila Samakhya Society made the ICC after the regular follow up and gave a written reply about their committee detail.
3. Developing the IEC material
The IEC materials have been drafted, designed and prepared for the increasing awareness among the people about the sexual harassment laws in India. We prepared browser and poster on the laws relating to sexual harassment such as; the sexual harassment of women at workplace act, 2013, The Indian Panal Code, the Employment laws. We also cover the factual situations and the ways of dealing with the issues in The IEC material.
These IEC materials will be distributed to the beneficiaries and other people during various meetings, consultations as well as during the follow-up programs. The materials will be circulated to the beneficiaries, the people covered in the survey, head of the institutions, members of the civil society, feminist activists and persons across different walks of life in order to increase awareness on the sexual harassment laws and the importance of its implementation.
Due to the sharing vital information relating to sexual harassment of women at workplace through IEC materials large number of population has come to know the basics of the sexual harassment laws. The heads of the institutions now have a brief knowledge of the procedures for the formation of sexual harassment complaint committee and it’s functioning as well as their responsibilities towards the safety of their female staffs. Moreover, the male and female employees have also become aware of the meaning of sexual harassment, the remedial measures provided in laws etc. Discussing ahead, it is worth mentioning that after our intervention and orientation provided to the head of the institutions about the sexual harassment laws, more than 21 institutions have formed the internal sexual harassment complaint committee while the others are in process.   
4.  Meeting of the MJK sexual harassment complaint committee
On 05th August, 2014 at 2 pm to 4 pm a meeting of Sexual harassment complaint committee was organized by Mahila Jagaran Kendra in the Koshish office for the appraisal and achievement of last year and planning of this year, project based on the “sexual harassment of women at workplace. The basic aim of the consultation was to enrich the planning of the project as well as the materials prepared by the staffs for better implementation of the project. The consultation included many eminent personalities of the social work field. After the consultation a meeting of the sexual harassment complaint committee also happened where many issues relating to the sexual harassment was also discussed.
The total number of participants included 8 people. These covered eminent personalities from the field of social work, namely; Mrs. Neelu, Mrs. Shivani, Mrs. Sajina Rahat, Mrs Anjali, Ms. Nupur, Mr. Vinod and Mr. Sanjay. The participants included the interns working under the project as well.

Range of Activities

Discussion on Activity and Achievement of last year

At the beginning we discussed on main activities which were done last year by Ms. Pooja.  After that a short presentation was shared with the participants related to the achievement of last year.

Presentation of the planning

A short presentation was shared with the participants related to the planning of the project named and titled “Campaign against reducing sexual harassment of women at work place and proper implementation of laws relating to sexual harassment against women and girls in the state of Bihar”  by Ms. Nupur.

Suggestions and feedback

·    Regarding the awareness activity, Vinod jee suggested that we should take help from social activist and that is Mrs Sajina Rahat. We can prepare a script or a music and can aware the people with the help of these types of tools. Mr. Sanjay Kumar and Mrs. Shivani suggested that we should involve the unorganized sector in the network, like poor women, maid, women labor and women of lower status.
·Mrs Sajina said that we should aware the media and the press like REDIO MIRCHI and DOORDARSHAN because it will help the implement of this act. She also suggested that there is need to implementation in state level complaint committee. it is working very slowly and very inactively.
·         Regarding the implementation strategies, the participants shared their concerns about the implementation tools and strategies for the proper implementation of the Vishakha Guidelines and the laws relating to sexual harassment. Ms. Shivani said that we must aware the advocate fist and after that we can aware the civil society. So we should organize the meeting with lowers.

5.   Conduction the meeting of Nirbhaya Women’s Network
On 30th August, 2014 at 2 pm to 4 pm a meeting of Nirbhaya Women’s Network was organized by Mahila Jagaran Kendra in the Koshish office.
The basic aim of the meeting was to discuss about the case of Rajda and Meenakshi. The total number of the network member was 5 and they were Mrs. Shivani, Mrs. Sajina, Mrs. Neeta Mohini, Mrs. Babita and Ms. Nupur.

Range of Activities

Discussion about the last meeting

At the beginning we discussed about what we found in the case of Rajda by the last meeting. We knew that as the victim is very timid she did not wanted to file a case against the perpetrator. Therefore, the network is also looking forward to provide her legal and economic support. But, during some days the victim and her family have been torturing by the perpetrator with threatening. She also got some money and gifts from the perpetrator with bad intention. So now she is ready to fight against the perpetrator.
The second was Meenakshi’s case. She has been teaching in D.A.V. School since last 10 years and she has been suffering from sexual harassment in her work place by the Principle of the school. She wants support from Nirbhaya Women’s Netwrok and so she wrote an application to the Netwrok at 27-03-14. We tried so many times to get appointment from the Principle to discuss the matter of Meenakshi, but we failed. Now we decided that we will go to the school and meet him and also gave him an application for giving an appointment to discuss the above matter.

Suggestions and feedback

· Regarding the case of Rajda, Mrs. Meeta Mohini suggested that we should keep some evidence in written form, by Rajda. Because there is possibility of change the victim, so we should keep security for that situation.
·Mrs Shiwani suggested that we should not keep silent now. We have to go there for filing the case because they are giving threatening to Rajda and her family.
·Mrs. Shiwani suggested that Mrs. Neelu, Mrs. Shivani and Ms. Nupur will go to Ranchi and Anjali from Dhanbad will also go with us for filing the case.
·Mrs. Sajina suggested that the chief functionary of that N.G.O. should organize a meeting and talk to everyone.
· Regarding the case of Mrs. Meenakshi, Mrs. Shiwani suggested that we have to take appointment till 10th of the September. And Mrs. Shiwani, Mrs. Neelu, Mrs. Sajina, Mrs. Meeta Mohini, Mrs. Babita and Ms. Nupur, All the above will go to the principle for discuss about the matter of Mrs. Meenakshi.
·  Regarding the case of Ms. Rupashree, Mrs. Shiwani and Mrs. Meeta Mohini suggested that Ms. Rupashee should file the petition in the court and after getting this order sheet, she has to go to Mrs. Smita Paul for making pressure on her for giving letter to Ms. Rupashree and then Rupashree can get justice.

6.      Participation in workshop on GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT
 Program name    :           Workshop on Gender and Development
Venue                  :           N. B. J. K. Training centre, Ranchi
Date                     :           11.08.14 - 14.08.14
Ø  To develop our understanding power on Gender
Ø  To clear about Gender Discrimination
Ø  What is Development and how it is possible
Ø  How to work at the project for betterment
The workshop started on 11-08-14 with introduction of the participant. Almost 25 people participated in the workshop. All of the participants gave their short introduction; what is their name, from where he or she came and from which organization she or he belongs to. Ms. Girija and Ms. Vrinda also gave their introduction to us.
After that all the participants were asked that about their expectation from this workshop and then we started discussion on GENDER. We knew that there is only difference between boy and girl and that is physical construction. And other differences are made by society.

We discussed on gender and through presentation we saw that we do difference between girl and boy at home, at work place, in custom and religion and in public.
Ms. Neelu said that without support of male it is very difficult to work at this issue. So we should organize the training for male and female both.
And after that we discussed about the sex ratio. We knew that there is a large difference in sex ratio in India. It is wrong to think that education and financial condition are the reason for that. In towns we find that there is education. But still their sex ratio is not equal. Also their financial condition is good but sex ratio is not equal. There is need to find out the main root of these types of issues after that we can do something for this issue.
After this, Ms. Vrinda explained about the difference between need and interest. She said that we should do work with interest as well as need.
We saw three movies during the workshop. “Astitva”, “Highway” and “Pita Putra aur Satta”. In these movies we saw the different forms of the women’s issue. After watching it we discussed about the movies.
In the movie Astitva we saw the story of a woman who spent her whole life for her family. But after her one mistake she is exploited by her husband and her son, only because she is a woman. On the other hand a man is totally free for doing any types of mistakes. And nobody can blame for anything to him.
Second movie was Highway. In this movie we saw the story of a girl who is sexually harassed by her uncle. Her mother knows everything but she doesn’t want to tell anything to anybody so she suppressed the matter.  The girl has been harassed by uncle through her childhood due to the silence of her family. This movie shows the truth of our society, which is actually happening in our society. So, there are needs to break the silence against sexual harassment.
Third movie was Pita, Putra aur Satta. In this movie we saw so many problems of a woman. Like Child marriage, Sati pratha and religious base riot and so.
Thus we saw the different types of problem that have been facing by a woman in her regular life.  These are only occurring due to gender discrimination.  So first of all we need to change our view and need to work for gender equality.
After that, Vrinda discussed about “What is Development?”
Ø  When Educational Development is high
Ø  When Proper use of natural resource is high
Ø  When Health status is high
Ø  When Income levels is high
Ø  When Unemployment is low
Ø  When Gender discrimination is low
Ø  When Technological Development is high
Ø  When Real Participatory/ Freedom is high
Ø  When Infrastructure is high
Ø  When Caste basis discrimination is low
Ø  When Mental Psychological well being is high

We also discussed about “what is necessary in Development?”
Ø  Political Freedom
Ø  Economical facilities
Ø  Social opportunities
Ø  Transparency
Ø  Protective Security

After that we knew that about 50 million women are mission. These are the reason of it:
Ø  Dowry Death
Ø  Feticide
Ø  Mental depression
Ø  Trafficking
Ø  Lack of vitamins
Ø  In India the sex ratio is 914 according to the survey of 2011. But there is need to noticing that 0-6 year girls are counted in the survey. But what about the women who died due to Dowry, Feticide, mental depression, trafficking and lack of vitamins. If it is counted then what will be the ration? There is need to think about it.

Sex election
On this issue Ms. Vrinda said that Gender discrimination is the main reason of sex election. She show us some posters related to the issue and discussed about the abortion.  We knew that a woman has right to abort her child. It is not a murder. So it is wrong to use the word “murder” in the posters or anywhere. In India almost 10% mother death is occurred due to unsecure abortion.
We prepared a poster group wise for domestic violence and discussed at the domestic violence. We also shared the campaign program related to reducing domestic violence.

A woman can go these places when she suffers from domestic violence.
Ø  Police station
Ø  Help line
Ø  N. G. O.
Ø  Mahila Thana

Ms. Girija gave us some important tips during the workshop:
Ø  It is extremely important to build Network.
Ø   To maintain it is also important
Ø  To follow up is essential
Ø  To involve the media is also very important part of our work
Ø  To strengthen the case work is very important
Ø  To link up the relevant people is useful

7.      Our intervention in the sexual harassment cases in Patna
After various activities undertaken by the organization relating to sexual harassment many cases came into light related to the sexual harassment at workplace in the month of May, 2014. We got two cases of sexual harassment.
Case no. 1
The victim was working in a grass root NGO as an office assistant suffered sexual harassment and sexual violence at the hand of the brother of the head of the organization. The women had only completed 3 ½ months of her service, that she had to suffer sexual violence. The perpetrator used to harass her by unwanted physical touches, advances and gestures. The women simmered in silence in fear of getting stigmatized. But, her silence bore her an aggravated and dreadful result. She was subjected to sexual violence by the perpetrator. This left the victim in great distress and pain. There was no one who could come to her rescue. Moreover, two women supporting the victim were also fired from their jobs.
The victim thereafter came to know about the NIRBHAYA Women’s Network through her well wishers and approached the members of network for helping her out. The members of the Network also went for the fact finding of the case to the organization where the incidences had occurred. The fact finding suggested that the head of the organization had wrongly suppressed the matter and was biased against the victim.
The victim is in touch with the Network and the members of network are providing her counseling and legal support. But, as the victim is very timid she did not wanted to file a case against the perpetrator. Therefore, the network is also looking forward to provide her legal and economic support.       
Case no. 2
The victim has been working in D.A.V. School as a teacher since 2004. She is harassed by the principle of the school. The perpetrator always shouts on her and uses abusive language for her. The victim complained for this to Zonal Director and Director. After that, the perpetrator started torturing with her more than before. The perpetrator gave threatening to her that if she will disclose the matter to anyone then she can be spoiled.  The other teachers know everything but due to fear they are speechless.
At November 2013 the victim became ill and due to illness the doctor said to her for rest. Many times she wrote applications many times to the perpetrator for leave, but he doesn’t accept her leave all the times. The victim became very weak and took leave without permission. In the absence of the victim, the perpetrator held her salary and charged leave without pay. She doesn’t get her salary for three months. After joining the principle started giving more pressure on her for taking over classes for 5 hours continuously. So due to over load of work, it began to effect on her health. On the other hands the other teachers were taking leave easily but she can’t.
Now the victim thereafter came to know about the NIRBHAYA Women’s Network through her well wishers and approached the members of network for helping her out.

8.   Meeting the victims
As any case comes to us seeking help with regard to the sexual harassment at workplace, then first of all a meeting of the members of NIRBHAYA Women’s Network is held. Thereafter, the members meet the victim and the other side also. After this, the members again hold a meeting for taking appropriate action in the case and for providing the victim legal aid or counseling. The members take action such as meeting the officials in the organization on behalf of the victim and narrating her stance.

9.       Taking action in their cases
The Network has taken many steps to help those victims of sexual harassment in filing the case, by providing legal aid and counseling. It also works as a pressure group on the government for taking stern action against the culprit.

10.      Providing them legal aid and counseling
The victims are connected to the women and other good lawyers who would deal their case properly without taking any monetary benefits. Moreover, they are provided legal aid time to time regarding the sexual harassment law, 2013, the criminal legislations, service laws etc. Moreover, meeting is conducted with the head of institution for taking appropriate action in such cases.      

11.     Monitoring and project management: Staff meeting
The monitoring of the project is also done at the local level by the Chief functionary of the organization and other civil society members associated with the project. Moreover, the plans for running the projects smoothly is discussed with the Chief functionary, board members and sexual harassment complaint committee members at the staff meeting. The staff meeting of the organization happens at every month, where the project staffs present the progress of their project.

12.      Problems
·  As the follow-up program is being carried out by the project staff, while visiting the institutions and carrying on meetings with the head of the institutions they say that such cases do not occur in their institution and their attitude regarding the formation of sexual harassment compliant committee did not seemed positive. For eg: the head of Rajkiya Aurved Collage, ICICI PRUDENCIAL and Telegraph were reluctant to form any committee.
· Time taking implementation process – As the organization has asked the workplaces surveyed through letters to form the sexual harassment complaint committee some of them replied that they will have to talk to their head office and as it goes through a long and time taking process it may consume a good amount of time.
·  Moreover, as the private and the government organizations are asked to provide information through letters about the implementation of the sexual harassment laws and formation of the sexual harassment complaint committee in written, therefore, it is also a time taking process and the quick dissemination of information depends on the will of the organization and its head.   

13.    Achievements

· Victims are now approaching us for help in order to fight for justice. They have approached us through    reference, by word of mouth, social media networking etc.
· The organization is also facilitating the women lawyers by providing them the opportunity to deal with the    cases of sexual harassment.   
· The survivor’s network and their sensitivity for each-other’s matter is growing day-by-day because of the    initiative taken by our organization. 
· NIRBHAYA Women’s Network is working properly for in cases of sexual harassment and providing aid  to the victims.
·  Internal complain committee are forming from the effort of the project staff.
·  Got replies from the institution about their ICC details.