Nepali Girls: 5 Critical Problems That Girls in Nepal Are Facing
Nepal is a country where women have managed to come beyond the four walls of their house and work for their living on their own. Nepalese women have definitely proved themselves not only as good housewives but also as successful professionals. In a country where people follow orthodox views that males are superior and dominant, women have been trying to prove the stereotype wrong. All thanks to education and awareness. But in return, has the country been able to provide a safe shelter for the women? Has the country been able to provide equal career opportunities to women in comparison to men? I suppose not yet. The following practices and acts need to be eliminated before we say girls and women of Nepal are safe.
1. Gender Inequality
At first, Nepal has been a male dominated society with deeply rooted traditional values. Boys were considered a boon whereas girls as a curse. Education to girls was not preferred. Gender inequality was prevalent. In fact, the discrimination occurred from the time a child was in the womb. The high abortion rate was the witness of such differences. (Evidence: http://www.ibtimes.com/nepal-abortion-preference-baby-boys-gender-imbalance-1129841)
Slowly with the help of awareness, girls started attaining education. In comparison, more girls are educated in present than in past. However, after completion of their education, they are not provided an equal platform to showcase their talent.
2. Physical Relation Assault
Physical Relation assault has always been a crucial issue in Nepal. When physically assaulted, the girls have to face devastating consequences where they are hurt emotionally as well as physically.
In the past, being raped signified a girl as being impure. The narrow mind-set of society and limited perception of the people failed to create an open environment for the girls to fight against the dreadful incident. As a result, many cases remained unfiled. If focused on the present, rape is still prevalent and safety of women is still not guaranteed. According to a report on 2013, 30 rape cases were filed in an interval of 3 months in Nepal. (Link: https://www.nepalmonitor.org/index.php/reports/view/1042)
3. Girls Trafficking
Young girls and women in a hope of good life try to move out from Nepal to the foreign land. The result: they fall into the trap of trafficking. These innocents are sold mainly in India, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia where they are forced into prostitution. However, after education and awareness, trafficking was supposed to be minimized. But, shockingly, flesh trade is still prevalent and women are still sold in the foreign land. For more information, please visit the link
A recent incident that attracted the eye of human rights organization and the country was of two Nepalese women sold through the channels of trafficking agents to Saudi Diplomat who were later exploited and abused. (Link: http://www.firstpost.com/india/what-went-unnoticed-in-the-saudi-diplomat-case-the-grim-story-of-human-trafficking-2430480.html)
4. Domestic Violence
The safest place for a girl is her home. But what happens when inhumane activities start from the home itself?
Domestic violence has been prevalent in Nepal from the past. Women were physically injured or abused. They were the victims of marital rape and forced prostitution. Whereas girls were molested and harassed. The shocking part was that the culprit was most of the times part of the same family. Such violence is prevailing till date.
A report by Informal Sector Service Center (INSEC) shows that total of 910 incidents was recorded. Half the number was domestic violence alone. Source: http://www.insec.org.np/pics/report/1386576517.pdf – Chapter 2
5. Acid Attack
Last but not least, Acid attack has become a new trend among the criminals to harm girls. It was not prevalent before the mid-20th century. However, when such incidents occurred in India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, Nepalese criminals got influenced which led to acid attacks in Nepal.
The recent acid attack on the two school girls symbolizes how unsafe girls are in Nepal. (Link: http://kathmandupost.ekantipur.com/news/2015-02-23/2-schoolgirls-hurt-in-acid-attack.html)
So, why are girls facing such problems in Nepal till date? Is it because of the lenient laws or the mentality of people? Whatever the reason is, the consequence is tragic. It’s high time that people should act rather than react on such issues. Girls who occupy more than half of the population deserve safety and security in the country they live and it is only possible to the combined effort of the citizens and the government. Awareness is to be raised with joint participation of all related authorities and proper implementation of rules need to be executed.
Emailed by the writer: Sanjay Maharjan