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news details
Amid #MeToo outrage, JK victims suffer as women commission is headless
10/16/2018 10:50:24 PM

Early Times Report
Jammu, Oct 16: Even as #MeToo campaign pertaining to sexual harassment of women has taken the country by storm, such potential victims in Jammu and Kashmir state "suffer unheard" as women commission is headless.
After the collapse of the Peoples Democratic Party -Bharatiya Janta Party coalition in June, the incumbent chairperson of Women Commission had resigned in accordance with the convention. But for the last four months the government has allegedly failed to fill the post thereby affecting the activities at the office.
The State Commission for women which was established in 1999 to protect women's right has no head since PDP leader Nayeema Mehjoor, who was the chairperson of the board, resigned from the chair.
Sources said the day-to-day office work is badly affected. "The normal work is so badly affected that any new potential complainant who visits the office gives up the idea of filing a complaint lest it goes waste," said an insider on the condition of anonymity.
Observers said given the "wave of #MeToo storm it was mandatory for the state government to make the women's commission functional."
"When the women victim across the country are getting inspired to file complaints with regard to sexual harassment victims if any in our state would also like to file complaint but given the non-performance of the office of the women commission, such victims feel secure to file complaint, and thus continue to be victims," said a legal expert.
A civil society group is planning to move Court against government for its alleged "slumber over the issue of women's rights." "Keeping women commission headless is no less than an offence as the callousness of the government has affected the sense of security among the women," said a social activist on the condition of anonymity.
When contacted a senior official downplayed the matter. "It is not for the first time that the women commission is headless. It has remained so in the past as well for months together, so there's no need to make a mountain out of molehill," the official said.
Meanwhile the civil rights groups have appealed Governor SP Malik to personally look into the matter.
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