Short description of Acid attack in Nepal: – An acid attack, also known as an acid release, vitriol attack, or vitriolage, is a form of a violent attack in which acid or a similar caustic substance is dumped into another person’s body to disfigure, mutilate, torture, or kill him.

The most common types of acids used in these attacks are sulfuric and nitric acids. Hydrochloric acid is sometimes used, but it is much less harmful. Aqueous solutions of strongly alkaline materials such as caustic soda (sodium hydroxide) are also used, especially in areas where strong acids are controlled substances.

The long-term consequences of these seizures can include blindness, eye burns with severe permanent scarring of the face and body, and widespread social, psychological, and economic difficulties.

Today, acid attacks are reported in many parts of the world, but more frequently in developing countries. Between 1999 and 2013, a total of 3,512 people in Nepal were attacked with acids, and the number of cases decreased by 15-20% each year since 2002, according to strict laws against perpetrators and regulation of acid sales.

acid attack in Nepal
acid attack

In India, acid attacks are at their peak, increasing with 250 to 300 incidents reported each year, while “the actual number could exceed 1,000, according to Acid Survivors’ Trust International.”

Causes of acid attack

The attacker’s intention is often to humiliate the victim rather than kill her. Such attacks, particularly against men, are believed to go unreported, and therefore many of them are not included in official statistics. Some of the most common motivations for perpetrators are:

  1. Personal conflict regarding intimate relationships and sexual rejection.
  2. Racial reasons
  3. Sexually induced jealousy and lust.
  4. Social, political and religious motivations.
  5. Violence and rivalry between gangs
  6. Discrimination against minorities.
  7. Conflicts over ownership of land, farm animals, housing, and property.
  8. Revenge for rejecting sexual progress, marriage proposals, and dowry requests.

Gender inequality and the position of women in society in relation to men play an important role in this type of attack.


There are also attacks against people based on their religious beliefs or their social or political activities. These attacks can target a specific person because of their activities, or against random people just because they are part of a social group or community.

The students poured acid on their faces as punishment for going to school. Acid attacks due to religious conflicts have also been reported. Both men and women were victims of acid attacks because they refused to convert to another religion.

Effects of acid attack on people

The most notable effect of an acid attack is lifelong physical disfigurement. According to the Acid Survivors Foundation in Pakistan, there is a high survival rate among victims of acid attacks.

As a result, the victim faces physical challenges that require long-term surgical treatment, as well as psychological challenges that require deep intervention from psychologists and counselors at each stage of physical recovery.

These far-reaching effects on their lives affect their psychological, social, and economic viability in communities.

Physical effect

The medical effects of acid attacks are extensive. Because most acid attacks target the face, several articles have examined the medical effects on these victims in depth.

The severity of damage depends on the concentration of the acid and the time before the acid is completely washed with water or neutralized with a neutralizing agent. Acid can quickly eat the skin, the layer of fat under the skin, and in some cases even the underlying bone.

The eyelids and lips can be completely destroyed and the nose and ears can be seriously damaged. Although not exhaustive, the results of the Acid Survivors Foundation Uganda included:

  1. The skull is partially destroyed / deformed and the hair is lost.
  2. The cartilage of the ear is usually partially or completely destroyed; Deafness can occur.
  3. The eyelids can be burned or deformed, making the eyes extremely dry and blind. Acid directly into the eye also damages vision and sometimes causes blindness in both eyes.
  4. The nose can shrink and deform. The nostrils can be closed completely due to the destruction of the cartilage.
  5. The mouth shrinks and narrows and you may lose your full range of motion. Sometimes the lips can be partially or completely destroyed, exposing the teeth. Eating and talking can be difficult.
  6. Scars can run from the chin to the neck area, shrink the chin, and extremely restrict range of motion in the neck.

Inhalation of acidic vapors generally leads to respiratory problems and aggravated restricted airways (esophagus and nostrils) in acid patients. In addition to these medical effects mentioned above, victims of acid attacks have the possibility of sepsis, kidney failure, skin pigmentation, and even death.

A 2015 attack in which a man was thrown with sulfuric acid on his face and body while lying in bed, among other things, paralyzed him from the neck down.


Acid attack survivors face many mental health problems as they recover. A study showed that victims of non-Caucasian acid attacks reported higher levels of anxiety and depression compared to published Western standards of mental well-being, and higher scores on the Derriford scale, which measures mental stress due to their concern about your appearance.

Furthermore, female victims reported a decrease in self-esteem on the Rosenberg scale and an increase in self-confidence in general and social settings.


In addition to the medical and psychological effects, there are many social effects for acid survivors, especially women. For example, such attacks generally cause victims to be disabled in some way, making them dependent on their spouse or family for everyday activities such as eating and running errands.

These dependencies are reinforced by the fact that many acid survivors cannot find suitable work due to visual disturbances and physical disabilities. This negatively affects their economic viability and creates difficulties for the families / spouses who care for them.

As a result, divorce rates are high and husbands are abandoned in 25% of acid attack cases in Uganda (compared to only 3% of wives who leave their husbands disfigured).

Furthermore, acidic survivors who are single in attacks are almost certainly excluded from society, effectively ruining the possibility of marriage. Some media largely avoid reporting violence against acid attacks, or the description of the attack is laconic or often implies that the act was inevitable or even justified.

How can we stop this Social violence?

  1. Research has produced many solutions for the increasing incidence of acid attacks worldwide. Many countries are looking to Bangladesh, whose attack rate has been reduced as a role model after leading many legislative reforms. However, several reports highlighted the need for an improved legal role for NGOs to provide rehabilitation support to acid survivors. Furthermore, almost all of the research highlighted the need for stricter regulation of acid sales to address this social problem.
  2. In many high-incidence developing countries, treatment of burn victims remains inadequate. Lack of medical funds has resulted in very few cremation centers being available to victims in countries like Uganda, Bangladesh and Cambodia. For example, Uganda has a specialized cremation center across the country that opened in 2003. Similarly, there is only one incinerator of victims in Cambodia, and scientists estimate that only 30% of the population of Bangladesh has access to care. medical.
  3. In addition to inadequate medical skills, many victims of acid attacks due to lack of confidence in the armed forces, lack of hopelessness due to the impunity of the attackers, and fear of male brutality in the treatment of their cases, do not they report to the police. Most female victims suffer from police apathy for cases of harassment rather than security concerns, as the victims refused to record a police case, despite being attacked three times before obtaining police help after an attack with acid.
  4. These problems are compounded by a lack of knowledge about how to treat burns: Many victims applied oil to the acid instead of rinsing it thoroughly and completely with water for 30 minutes or more to neutralize the acid. Such home remedies only serve to increase the severity of the damage, as they do not counteract heartburn.

The latest news on the acid attack in Nepal | in 22-year-old women

A 22-year-old woman in Sitapaila, Kathmandu, survived an acid attack on Thursday night. A few hours after the crime, police officers arrested two suspects, including an Indian citizen, who confessed to the crime.

The victim was attacked on her face and is currently being treated at Kirtipur Hospital, according to SSP Shyam Lal Gyawali, chief of the Metropolitan Police in Kathmandu.

a video about Acid Attack in Nepal, embeded from YouTube.

Preliminary investigations have shown that one of the two suspects, Mohammad Alam, mobilized his employee Munna Mohammad to throw acid at the woman after the woman did not accept his relationship proposal.

However, the victim’s family has denied the statement that Alam is “like a guardian” to them. Both Alam and Mohammad were arrested.

Why is acid attack increasing in Nepal?

The majority of acid attack survivors are women and girls. The most common reasons for attacks against women and girls are the rejection of marriage, sexual rejection, and sexual rejection of men and boys. It is an expression of control over the bodies of women and girls.

In Nepal, where ActionAid works, there have been thousands of acid attacks in recent years. This includes young women trying to escape a forced marriage.

In most cases, people intentionally point to the face, destroy the eyelids to keep the eyes open, because a woman’s face is considered sacred. Her disfigurement becomes a public sign of shame, making it difficult for her to get married or find a job.

By damaging the survivor’s face, the author limits his ability to participate in public life and damages his chances of marriage and the desire to have children.

Therefore, acid attacks on women and girls have a multiple impacts due to society’s reaction to survivors, of which the perpetrator is certainly aware before the attack.

How can the Nepal government stop this violence?

Implementation of laws

National governments are ultimately responsible for the introduction and implementation of laws and policies related to acid violence against women and girls. Therefore, governments should be responsible for this.

They are also well positioned to make changes in violence against women and girls. The obligation of States to prevent violence against women and girls and to offer comprehensive services to survivors of such violence was established in general recommendation No. 19 of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) of the United Nations as a standard of due diligence.

One of the reasons why acid violence occurs is the cheap and easy availability of acid. State due diligence to prevent acid violence includes regulating the sale of acid and passing criminal laws to punish criminals.

Change these all

  1. Many of the countries where acid violence occurs have a high level of violence against women. Like other forms of violence against women, acid violence arises due to gender inequality. Violence against women and girls is based on gender discrimination, social norms, and gender stereotypes that underpin this violence. The best way to stop acid violence is to prevent it from happening by addressing the causes. Education is essential to prevent acid attacks and other forms of violence against women and girls. Prevention must start early in life by educating and working with boys and girls to promote respectful relationships and gender equality.
  2. If acid is thrown at a person, the results can be terrible. Nitric acid, hydrochloric acid, or sulfuric acid have a catastrophic effect on human meat. This melts away the skin tissue, often exposing the bones underneath the meat and sometimes even breaking them. When acid attacks the eyes, it permanently damages these vital organs. The victim is physically, psychologically, and socially traumatized.
  3. An acid attack on her body would change her life dramatically. Most acid attack survivors are forced to give up their education, profession, and other important activities in their lives. This is because recovering from trauma consumes most of their time and the disfigurement they have to endure weakens and hinders them in every possible way.
  4. The scars left by the acid are not only superficial, but the victims are mainly exposed to social isolation and exclusion, which further damages their self-esteem, their self-confidence and seriously undermines their professional and personal future. Women who have survived acid attacks have great difficulty finding work, and if they are single, no matter how many victims there are, they have very little chance of getting married, which is socially isolated in a country.

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