No More Violence, I Want Justice

When she wouldn’t give her husband a dowry, he married another woman and this family tried to kill her. Sangeeta has finally been able to flee to the safety of her maternal home but the battle has just begun… What about her rights? what about the rights of her daughter? Community Correspondent Radhika reports from Hingoli district Maharashtra. Sangeetha was happily married to her husband for sometime. When she became pregnant with their first child she went to spend time at her parents house, a tradition followed by many women. They were blessed with a baby girl and she wanted to return to her husband. Her husband asked her to bring a dowry of Rs.50000 and threatened to leave her if she did not. This is not just dowry but a poignant and outrageous form of punishment for having a daughter. A 2006 report by the Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics, Pune, established a very clear pattern of a declining sex ratio in Maharashtra between 1991 and 2001. The mushrooming of sonography facilities that unlawfully determined the sex of the child played a major role in this. While things look up a little in terms of numbers (the sex ratio is now 929) the reality is still bleak and women like Sangeeta bear the brunt of this. On trying to reason with her husband, Sangeeta went to the police to register a complaint against him. She was attacked again and they tried to push her into a well. Luckily, she escaped with her daughter. Although she does not have any source of income or any support, she has taken the first step towards making her daughter’s future a bright one. Community Correspondent Radhika has herself emerged victorious in trying to establish her own freedom in her marriage. As she finished her training to become an IndiaUnheard Community Correspondent, she told us: “It was never easy juggling my marriage with my desires to go out and work on social issues. I had to fight every single step of the way and only now, years later is it possible for me to do things my way. I have worked a lot on women’s issues in my community but there were never any photos or documentation I could do to support the women. Now I can.” Sangeetha demands justice. Sangeetha demands for her rights. Sangeetha demands that her husband be punished for extortion in form of dowry, for polygamy and for attempting to murder her. You can join her: Call to Action: Please Call Mr. Sudhir Dhabde, Police Inspector, Hingoli, on 02456221744 and ask him to ensure that Sangeeta’s case is registered and followed up.

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