News Archives

Bihar Mulls Over Raising Transgender Persons Battalion

The Times of India - Patna, India, 12/26/2020

The state government in Bihar is working on a plan to raise a police battalion for transgender people, the state’s additional chief secretary (Home) Amir Subhani has confirmed. The development comes following a petition filed by Veera Yadav, an activist who urged the high court to direct the authorities to allow transgender people to take part in the recruitment process against 8,000 vacancies of constables in the state police department. A senior home department officer, who wished to remain anonymous, said that several meetings had been organised to discuss various issues related to forming a policy on recruiting transgender people in the state police.

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Domestic Violence Remained a Serious Concern for WCD Ministry in 2020

Deccan Herald, India, 12/25/2020

In 2020, domestic violence was a prime cause of concern for the Ministry of Women and Child Development as they received over 5,000 complaints. The ministry was flooded with complaints of violence in the month of March, 2020 when the coronavirus induced lockdown was imposed. The number of complaints increased through July, 2020 and reached its peak as the ministry received 660 complaints. Rekha Sharma, chairperson of the National Commission for Women said that the rise in the number of complaints was because of factors such as economic insecurity, financial instability and isolation among others. She added that the lockdown prevented women from moving to safer places in cases of violence and abuse, and reduced contact with the natal family which is usually their first point of contact.

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Women Can Obtain Business Loans of Up to Rs 5 Million at 5% Interest: SBP Deputy Governor

The International News, Pakistan, 12/24/2020

Deputy Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Seema Kamil announced on December 24, 2020 that women can obtain business loans of up to Rs 5 million at 5% interest. Kamil said that women in Pakistan manage their households with limited resources. She further added, “Women can open an ‘easy account’ at any bank for INR 100. The easy account can be opened only with an Identity Card (ID) card.” Prime Minister’s Successful Youth Scheme will provide awareness to 1 million people stressing that women play a major role in the development of agriculture.

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Cambodia Adds Human Trafficking Lessons to Schools

The Tribune - Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 12/24/2020

As per reports, school students in Cambodia will learn about the dangers and laws around human trafficking from an updated syllabus starting in 2021. The deputy head of the Cambodian government's counter-trafficking agency said that the new lessons will help students understand the different forms of human trafficking, the roles of schools and communities in prevention, and the relevant laws and rights. Chan Saron, a program manager at anti-trafficking charity Chab Dai suggested that particular attention should be paid to border provinces, where children are increasingly targeted by "brokers" for labour exploitation and forced marriage. Apparently, the pandemic has also given rise to a new wave of trafficking to Thailand including thousands trapped by debt bondage in the fishing, farming and manufacturing sectors.

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Karima Baloch: Pakistani Rights Activist Found Dead in Toronto

BBC, Pakistan, 12/22/2020

The body of Karima Baloch, a Pakistani human rights activist, has been found in Toronto, Canada, where she had been living for five years in exile. Ms Baloch, 37, a campaigner from the restive region of Balochistan in western Pakistan, was a vocal critic of the Pakistani military and state. In 2016, Ms Baloch was named in the BBC's annual list of 100 inspirational and influential women for her work as a campaigner. She left Pakistan in 2015, after terrorism charges were levelled against her. She joined the Baloch Students' Organisation (BSO) in 2006, which was officially banned by the government in 2013, but its existence continued and Ms Baloch became chairperson in 2015. Balochistan National Movement (BNM) announced a 40-day mourning period.

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