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Stories of Change: Strike back the silence
Megha Kashyap, Gender Justice programme co-coordinator
Dolly got married before she was 18 years of age. She hails from Purkazi Block of Muzzaffarnagar district in Uttar Pradesh. Her marriage was celebrated with great grandeur along with a fat dowry, expensive household gifts to her in-laws. The demands for gifts by the in-laws increased and when it wasn’t fulfilled, Dolly was beaten up on trivial pretexts. She was not allowed to visit her family or have any contact with them. Dolly’s family was completely unaware about her situation.
When Om Devi, member of a women’s group facilitated by Astitva, partner of Oxfam India, found Dolly with swollen eyes and bruises all over her body, at her in-laws place one day, she decided to pursue this case and get justice for Dolly who was pregnant with her first child at that time. The women’s group met her in-laws and informed about the case filed against them. The group leaders met the youth group members and told them to keep an eye on Dolly’s in-laws. As communicated by Dolly to the women’s group, her in-laws do not harass her anymore and she is presently in her maternal home..
The women group is always in touch with Dolly ensuring her safety. The case is currently in progress in the court. Dolly’s parents are thankful to the women group who saved their daughter from violence.
We at Oxfam India, celebrate the spirit of all these brave women with whom we walk in our fight to achieve a gender-just society.
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