The latest edition of SheThePeople.Tv Book Club held on 8th February marked the Book Launch of Sujata Parashar’s latest book The Temple Bar Women along with some insightful panel discussions. Parashar’s fourth book, is a socio-political thriller and is a story of female spirit against all odds. It talks about sexual violence and abuse, a domain, which remains shielded by silence.

Ably moderated by the author herself the first-panel discussion was on “Are we as a culture in a state of denial when it comes to sexual abuse?”

Violence against women is a mental illness

Dr Sanjay Chugh, Senior Consultant Neuro-Psychiatrist elaborated on how violence against women is a mental illness. He explained how in a household, if a father bashes up the mother and the son learns that mom is not retaliating, he thinks that it is fine to raise his hand on his girlfriend or wife and that she should be equally submissive.

Providing aid to the victim

As a Gynecologist, Dr Tripti Sharan said that the first thing they do when a victim of sexual abuse comes to them is to provide them with medical attention. The next is to prevent pregnancy and also to see if there is any sexually transmitted infection.

Also: Why We Need Gender Sensitization On University Campuses

The psychological state of the victim

She also highlighted that the victims often carry fear, guilt, shame and anger as pre-dominant emotions. Dr Chugh further explained why blaming the victim shouldn’t be there and how the inability to trust a man is a long-term effect.

During the second panel on “Trivializing Gender Violence: Social norms and Attitudes” Shri HGS Dhaliwal, Dy. Commissioner of Police, South Delhi District mentioned how the police undergo training to be more sensitive towards the victim while handling cases of sexual abuse.

He also asserted that a lot has been done and a lot needs to be done by the police adding that this is something which can’t be just cured by policing. It is a cultural and a societal issue also.

Empowering men

Richa Mohan, Clinical Psychologist and Director of Empowering Minds said that her NGO is continuously working towards men empowerment as most criminal cases witness men as accused.

In a lot of parenting programmes that they conduct, they teach mothers to stop treating boys and girls in a specific way.

Read Also: Transport is not Gender Neutral says Elsamarie DSilva

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