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Men’s meet to save women

New Delhi, Oct. 30: Minister for women and child welfare Renuka Chowdhury has come up with a new way to deal with domestic violence — a round-table with men.

“Men can’t remain our problem. They must be part of the solution,” the minister said at a meeting to review the implementation of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, a year after the legislation came into force.

The round-table conference is expected to be held in February. “I must listen to voices from the other side, too. I want to understand what they consider domestic violence,” Chowdhury said.

“Let them come up and say what their problems are. I want to know what provokes them to beat up their wives at home.”

The invitees to the round-table will include corporate heads as well as bloggers who have made their views known to the ministry.

Associations of tormented husbands such as Man’s Cell — which has on posters pasted on road dividers near the Supreme Court — will also be given a chance to speak.

The minister was all praise for the young generation. “I am very impressed with youths for their sensitivity,” she said, adding that they were playing an important part in spreading awareness about domestic violence.

College students have volunteered to go door to door to help women understand the new law, the minister said. “It (the act) is a wonderful preparation for them to grow up believing they can’t beat women as our grandfather’s generation had done.”

Since the act came into force, 7,913 cases have been registered across the country. Andhra Pradesh leads in terms of disposal of cases. Rajasthan has seen 3,440 cases filed so far while Jharkhand has had only 13. Bengal has registered 54 cases.

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