Stop acid tests
The discussion also paid heed to the need of regulation, to control the open sale of acid. This would help curb the violence against women. Acid attack survivors, Rupa and recipient of International Women of Courage Award, Laxmi, social activitist Alok Dixit, Consulting Editor, Mint, Namita Bhandare and renowned Supreme Court lawyer Karuna Nundy discussed the crime that has only recently come to limelight! Laxmi and Rupa shared their stories with the audience, when and how they were attacked, how their lives changed from there on, their struggles ever since and the support they received from Chhanv.
Every few days, there are increasing reports of acids being thrown at some girl in some part of this vast country. It has been noted, that in India, over 1000 women are victims of acid attacks annually. Recently, the Supreme Court went to the extent of banning, over the counter sale of acid in shops across India. Like most of such rulings, this one too lies mostly on paper. Acid is still available to anyone who wishes to purchase the same, quite easily.
Enforced legislation, as a speaker suggested, can be the first step in saving India's vulnerable women population. In fact, most problems that the society is grappling with can be overcome by this simple step. The acid attack victims face problems that most of us can’t even imagine. Denied justice, insufficient compensation and acceptance in society are just a few to be mentioned.
Stop Acid Attacks is a campaign against acid violence, founded by Alok Dixit. They work as a bridge between survivors and the society. The campaign was brought up, as most of the victims of this brutal crime, have isolated themselves after losing their face. ‘Due to ignorance of the government and civil society, most survivors find no hope and stay like an outcast, in solitude,’ says Dixit. Stop Acid Attack aims to research and track acid attack cases and compile a data to get the actual situation of survivors.
In the last two years, Dixit has built a campaign across the country. His organisation, made up mainly of acid attack victims, makes it a point to visit the victims and help them in whatever way possible.
It is our hope that more and more such organisations come up to help fellow humans and citizens. Because as we see it, the real change makers have often been the common man.