Public Hearing on "Commitment to Reduce Gender-based Violence"


Executive Summary

Sancharika Samuha (SAS) Nepal, in partnership with CARE Nepal, organized a half-day Public Hearing titled "Commitment to Reduce GBV" on 6 March 2014, marking the 104th International Women's Day in Lalitpur.

altMs Nirmala Sharma, President of SAS and chair of the program, said that particularly women from the poor and Dalit communities are accused of being a witch and are subsequently tortured physically and mentally. But in the absence of separate law and the ineffective implementation of the existing laws, increasing number of women from marginalized communities is being victimized and the perpetrators go scot-free. Drawing the attention of the government, she said that fighting for the rights of the survivors of witch accusation is not only the duty of the press and the non-governmental organizations. She also urged Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Mr Bam Dev Gautam to make commitment to reduce gender-based violence (GBV) and to live up to his commitment.

Mr Andrew James Sparks, British Ambassador to Nepal, congratulated the government of Nepal and civil society organizations on working together to address the issues of gender inequality. He added that the UK through DFID had been supporting many projects focusing on women's social and economic empowerment. The data on domestic violence around the world is shocking as one third of women experience domestic violence at some points in their lives, he said. In Nepal, UK has committed to a substantial program on security and access to justice focusing on helping women and girls break out of the culture of silence and report of violence.

Ms Nitu Pandit, General Secretary of SAS, presented a video clip with short narration by the survivors of witch accusation who were also present in the program. Mr Dinesh Hari Adhikari, Secretary at the Ministry for Women, Children and Social Welfare, released a book titled "Endless Atrocity', an anthology of the true stories of the survivors of witch. Ms Amrita Khadka, Banke; Ms Raj Kumari Rana, Kailali; and Ms Parbati Chaudhary, Rupandehi, all survivors of witch accusation and ensuing physical and mental torture, also shared the atrocity  committed by the villagers and in some cases even by the family members.

Mr Adhikari said that the government has established a Gender Violence Eradication Fund which provides Rs 50,000 to a survivor of witch accusation for her immediate rescue and support. He also said that the government was fully committed to make strict laws against witchery, and to eradicate other cultural violence like Chhaupadi, Dowry, etc. Mr Guna Raj Luitel, Editor of Annapurna Post daily, shared the findings of Media Monitoring carried out for three months before the event while Ms Mohna Ansari, Spokesperson, National Women's Commission, made a presentation on the legal provisions relating to witch accusation. Likewise, Mr Sabin Shrestha, an advocate, shared the legal provisions of Domestic Violence (Crime and Punishment) Act.alt

Then the floor was opened for asking question and expressing the views of the participants. A number of participants including senior author Mr Krishna Dharabasi, cultural expert Dr Ram Dayal Rakesh, Dr Amita Shakya who spoke on behalf of her sister-in-law (husband's younger sister) who was a witch accusation survivor and others asked questions to the government officials.

Deputy prime Minister and Home Minister Mr Bam Dev Gautam, the chief guest, said that the government was committed to end violence against women and to create an equitable society. He said that the perpetrators of GBV would be punished by the law and the entire government machinery is ready for that. I will direct all the subordinate agencies of the Home Ministry to be sensitive to registering the case of violence against women. The government is planning to establish a separate desk at the village level to handle the cases related to women and children, and I would like to invite suggestions to render government agencies women-friendly, he said.

Thanking SAS for organizing such an important event on the eve of International Women's Day, he categorically urged SAS to provide its suggestions to the draft of an Act on witch accusation in order to make the Act more effective. He also reiterated his commitment to reduce GBV in general and witch accusation in particular.

Ms Dhana GC, Chairperson of National Forum for Women Rights Concern (NFOWRC), spoke about domestic violence and the activities carried out by NFOWRC to combat domestic violence. She also said that in order to reduce different forms of violence against women, NGOs need to focus their program on outside the Kathmandu Valley. Kathmandu-centered programs may not be the solution for such types of violence since most cases of GBV occur outside the capital city, she added.

Ms Cathy Raily, Assistant Country Director of CARE Nepal, in her valedictory speech, appreciated the initiatives of SAS and thanked all who had contributed to make the event a success. She thanked the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister for asking the stakeholders to provide their suggestions before enforcing the Act on witch accusation. She said that women and girls are the agenda of CARE Nepal and the organization would collaborate with stakeholders to empower them to realize their all sorts of rights.

She said that a situation in which more than 51 percent of the population (women) does not have equality was completely unacceptable and urged all the stakeholders and survivors of witch accusation to be united to combat GBV and bring about change to tackle the issue of witch accusation. She also asked for forming an alliance to ensure women's rights. 

A total of 204 people from various organizations including journalists, political leaders, religion and cultural experts, senior women activists, lawyers, doctors, professors, litterateurs, representatives from UN agencies, and I/NGOs working especially on women rights participated in the program.

Introduction

Sancharika Samuha (SAS) Nepal, in partnership with Care Nepal, organized a half-day Public Hearing titled "Commitment to Reduce GBV" on 6 March 2014, marking the 104th International Women's Day in Lalitpur. The program was organized with an objective of drawing the attention of the duty bearers so that the survivors of gender-based violence (GBV) particularly witch accusation could get justice, the perpetrators are punished and it would contribute to minimizing GBV in future.  

In order to get commitment to reduce GBV, SAS invited Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, secretary at the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, high ranking police officials, human rights and women's rights activists, religious leaders, cultural experts, renowned litterateurs, physicians and legal professionals and the survivors of witch accusation.  

Proceedings

Opening Remarks

Ms Yashoda Adhikari, Executive Member of SAS, welcomed the participants and briefed that the program was organized with an objective of supporting the survivors of witch accusation to get justice by drawing the attention of stakeholders.

Ms Nirmala Sharma, President of SAS, said that SAS had invited all the concerned government officials, litterateurs, women's rights activists, human rights defenders and civil society leaders and the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister to the program organized to mark the 104th International Women's Day. GBV has become an endless cycle of violence in the context of Nepal and that GBV was the concern of all sectors.

"We want strong commitment and solidarity from the honorable Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister to end such a cycle of violence against poor, marginalized, elderly and oppressed women," she said addressing the Deputy Prime Minister. Women in Nepal have long been suffering from violence committed on the basis of superstition like witch accusation. Accusing poor and oppressed women of practicing witchcraft and torturing them physically and mentally in a cruel manner is not only a gross violation of women's rights, but also a public insult of women, she said.alt

The survivors of domestic violence are doubly suffering: being physically and mentally tortured and being not heard by the duty bearers. The police consider domestic violence, one of the most prevalent violence against women, as a family matter and do not take it seriously. In most cases, the perpetrators of domestic violence and witch accusation are at large and the survivors have not got justice, she said.

"GBV is different from other criminal offence as it an attack on the dignity of women, I would like to request Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister to make the entire police force to realize it and to direct them to take stern action against such perpetrators. Women have been suffering from violence daily and witch accusation and the subsequent physical and mental torture are callous," she said.  She also said that the media can play a role in reducing such violence against women. These issues were not only the subject matter of NGO and journalists but of all stakeholders. She further claimed that women working in government sector were also not serious over the issue and stressed that active participation in and commitment to reducing violence should be focused instead of just making investigations. She appealed all the participants for their commitment to end witchery.

Andrew James Sparks, British Ambassador to Nepal, thanked SAS and CARE Nepal and said that it was encouraging to have a variety of stakeholders to make 'equality for women' a reality and appreciated the government of Nepal for adopting the slogan "Equality for Women is Progress for All" for the 104th International Women's Day. He said that the UK, through DFID and the British Embassy was supporting a number of projects in Nepal focusing on women's social and economic empowerment.

DFID is working with a number of ministries to empower women and girls and help them to improve their overall socio-economic status. We have supported the Nepalese government to develop the Five-Year National Strategy to prevent and reduce GBV and the Ministry of Women, Children, and Social Welfare to develop their long-term strategies. We are also working with the Ministry of Health and Population to support one-stop crisis management centers to provide gender-responsive and women-friendly services to women survivors of violence in 15 districts, he further said.

The data on domestic violence around the world is shocking as one third of women experience domestic violence at some points in their lives, he said. In Nepal, UK has committed to a substantial program on security and access to justice focusing on helping women and girls break out of the culture of silence and report of violence. Journalists also play a very important role in combating violence against women. Currently, the British Embassy is supporting research to map and suggest improvements to legislation providing special measures to women to ensure equality and eliminate discrimination.  

Short Video on Survivors of Witchcraft Allegation

A short video on survivors of witchcraft allegation was shown. In the video the survivors had shared their sorrows and how they had long been fighting for justice. Ms Nitu Pandit, General Secretary of SAS, briefed about the short video and the survivors of witch accusation.

Launching of Publication on Survivors of Witch Accusation

Mr Dinesh Hari Adhikari, Secretary at the Ministry for Women, Children and Social Welfare, released a book titled "Endless Atrocity', an anthology of the true stories of the survivors of witch-hunting.

Sharing by Woman Accused of Witchcraft

Ms Amrita Khadka, Banke District

She briefly shared her sufferings after she was accused of being a witch by her own youngest son and subsequent beating up and public disgrace brought upon her by the son. After the atrocity crossed the limit, Amrita visited the police station to register a case, but the police took it lightly and told her to resolve the family altmatter at household level. Later she was able to file the case at the District Court, Banke but the case has not been decided yet. Meanwhile she stayed with her daughter for some time, but even the daughter accused her of being a witch and removed from her house. Being tortured and disgraced by her own progeny, she regretted saying "it is worthless bearing and caring children."

Ms Raj Kumari Rana, Kailali District

Mr Dal Bhadur Rana, spoke on behalf of his mother Raj Kumari Rana, as she was unable to speak Nepali. On the night of 5 April 2013 at around 4:00 a.m. we felt that someone was knocking on the door of our mud-built house. I woke up. My husband who was sleeping in the next bed also woke up because of the loud noise. Someone was hitting on the door with something. Someone behind the entrance was shouting, "Hey witch, open the door!" They were also using foul language. We were afraid. My husband was reluctant to opening the door. They said, "Either open the door or we will set fire on the house." My husband opened the door amid perplexity.

They pulled me from the bed. Neera Rana, one of the neighbours, assaulted me. She started beating me shouting, "Thou make villagers ill on the guise of a cat. Thou made my foetus miscarry using the witchery eight years ago. Every year someone dies in the village because of your black magic…" Then Neera, Dharma Singh and Ram Singh Rana shaved my hair. They disrobed me at my courtyard. They burnt my clothes. They fed me human excreta collecting from different houses. They thrust a stick to my genitals.

He said, “No law or rule works until and unless we bring change in our attitude.” He said that perpetrators should be arrested and investigated soon so that other women don't have to face such problems in coming days.

Ms Parbati Chaudhary, Rupandehi district

Daughter-in-law of Parbati Chaudhary, related the incident in which her mother-in-law including three other women had been accused of being a witch and repented that she  being a teacher couldn't save her mother-in-law. Her school helped her to file a case. She almost cried when she was saying that the condition of single woman had not improved so far; inhuman behavior like spitting, hating, beating still existed. She asked if such an evil practice continued, what sort of change people could expect from the society.

Remarks

Mr Dinesh Hari Adhikari, Secretary Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, said that he had been raising voice against GBV and stressed that media have remained strong on this issue.  He further said that the government has established a Gender Violence Eradication Fund which provides Rs 50,000 to a survivor of witch accusation for her immediate rescue and support. He said that government has been fully committed to make strict laws against witchery, and to eradicate other violence like Chhaupadi, Dowry, etc. Lastly, he wished for the success of the 104th International Women's Day.alt

While Mr Adhikari was about to leave the event, Ms Amrita Khadka asked him, "Is there any government for single women?" Answering her question, Mr Adhikari said that he was deeply shocked by what her progeny had done to her and urged the local government officials to be more sensitive towards such gross violence against innocent women and to take stern actions against the perpetrators.

Presentation on Media Monitoring Analysis on Witchcraft

Mr Guna Raj Luitel, Editor of Annapurna Post Daily

Mr Guna Raj Luitel shed light on the role of media and responsibility of the government to eradicate the malpractice of witch allegation. While monitoring the media he came across the incident where people explained story of survivors. Mentioning about research made in 2009 in Deharadun, India which found out that 25 to 26 thousand women got killed and litigation were made in high court. He emphasized cases filed could only be proceeded if other sources of information are available. But, cases do stuck in the absence of untimely follow-up. He said everyone should feel empathy and perpetrators should be punished accordingly. Often newspapers cover the news of witch accusation. Most probably, for the first time, the case of Marani Devi, who was accused of being a witch, was covered by Kantipur national daily with a priority on its first page with a big photograph of her. This news provided space with a priority to women who fell victim to an evil tradition of witch accusation.

Since then the media have been according priority to such news occasionally, but the priority is not enough and they lack regular follow-ups. The media have not been able to exert much pressure for formulating a new law relating to witch accusation. He elaborated that news coverage by papers are not enough, not just noticed news but also awareness raising program should be covered. Most of the issues become news only when they are reported to the concerned agencies for action. In most of the cases, the main source of news is the police. And the newspapers have not yet been able to editorialize this issue. Such incidents have been occurring continuously. But very few newspapers give space to news reports, articles and editorials, he added.

Presentation on Legal Aspects of Witchcraft

Ms Mohna Ansari, Spokesperson, National Women's Commission

She said that the government had committed to reduce GBV three years ago, but the cases of GBV are increasing instead of declining. There is lack of political will power in the government which has been reflected in impunity to the perpetrators of GBV. All the concerned government agencies should work in a coordinated manner and on top of that the government should enact a separate law to reduce GBV and to punish the perpetrators, she added. She also urged the police to change their behaviour of ignoring the cases of GBV and not taking action against perpetrators to registering all such cases and ending the culture of impunity. She demanded with the government to provide financial compensation to the victims of GBV which the government accrues from the perpetrators and the culture of reconciliation at the village or community level on cases of GBV including witch accusation. She laid emphasis on reforming the existing laws. Faith healing should immediately be legally prohibited. The publication and transmission of advertisement and materials that promote superstition should be banned. Campaigns should be launched to aware people as fostering superstition in the age of science and modernity is the violation of law, she added.

Open Floor Discussion

Roshani Jangam, woman activist, urged political leaders of different parties to strongly raise the issue of witch accusation. They should train their cadres to the belief that such a superstition does not exist, and it is a gross violation of the human rights of women to be accused of being a witch and punished subsequently on such irrational charges of practicing witchcraft, she added.

altKrishna Dharabasi, a renowned litterateur, said that accusation of witchery is one of the most heinous crimes and violence against women. He said that that he was overwhelmed by hearing the story of Parbati Chaudhary and shocked knowing the fact that no political leaders spoke against witchery. He questioned political leaders what had they preached their cadres. He also shared the tragic period when his mother was accused of being a witch by villagers. He said that the government had not taken any serious action against the perpetrators of witch accusation and urged the government machinery to be sensitive to the issue.

Dr Ram Dayal Rakesh, a cultural expert, informed that he had written a book on gender-based violence and was seeking for a publisher. He said the so called low-caste women get victimized more often but no media cover their stories. He further said weaker ones are targeted more as victims and said, "there is no any law for women".

Goma Acharya, women activist of Kailali, asked the police official present in the program why the police had not taken action against the perpetrators of witch accusation as they had been roaming freely in the villages. She also said that it was indicative that the police had not been fulfilling their duty. 

Bhagawati Pudasaini, citing an example of a girl on whom acid was hurled, asked the authority present in the event whether girls and woman had no right to look good and live a dignified life. She also criticized the police for not punishing the perpetrator yet. Such an indifference on the part of the government authorities push her and other fellow women's moral and confidence low, she added

Malati Kumari Thakur, Dhanusha, also asked the police why they had not arrested the perpetrators of violence against women from her community. She also asked why police were instructed to attend the programs organized by the NGOs.

Dr Amita Pradhan, sister-in-law of Pramila Shakya, one of the survivors of witch accusation, urged Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Mr Bam Dev Gautam to pay their attention to such issues of violence against women and also suggested the government to rehabilitate survivors of witch accusation establish and provide psychological counseling to them and their dependent children.

Remarks

Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Mr Bam Dev Gautam, apologizing for his late arrival to the program thanked the organizers and all participants for holding such an important event on the occasion of 104th International Women's Day.  He said that GBV had remained as a black stain in Nepal and elsewhere. GBV has become so prevalent in our society that the sharing by Mr Krishna Dharabasi is an evident of it.

The evil tradition of witch accusation might have been the product of backwardness, illiteracy, lack of access to justice and treatment and compulsion to depend on faith healers which can also be considered as the remains of feudalism, he said. Faith healing gave rise to witchery and males are also accused of being a wizard, he added.

Political change occurred in Nepal after 1951 and it resulted in increased number of health facilities which has contributed to reducing the burden on faith healers, but we need to raise awareness campaign against witch accusation in order to reduce violence against women being committed in the form of witch accusation, said the minister. SAS is well aware of the issues and it has brought forward them and we have got an opportunity to discuss on it now, he further said.

Awareness against GBV is appreciative. Responding a query why political parties had not preached their cadres on such issues, he said that he was administered oath, while being a member of the political party, not to commit violence against women, not to treat people as untouchable, and violation of such oath could result in the revocation party membership. Acknowledging the weakness of political parties, he said that most of the cases of witch accusation occur in the Tarai and neither the fringe parties nor the major political parties have been able to work against it.

We launched cultural revolution aimed at ensuring equality and have been making efforts to raise awareness among political parties as well, he said. In the presence of the British Ambassador, chiefs of I/NGOs, civil society organizations, representatives from different sectors, I commit that all the government agencies are committed to reduce violence against women stemmed from social ills, he said. Witch accusation is not tolerable but punishable, he said.alt

Appreciating the efforts of SAS he said that he wants to discuss further to end GBV and would accept suggestions and expressed commitment to create women-friendly environment. "I will instruct my subordinate agencies to this effect," he said. "I want to express my solidarity with formulating and enacting new Act related to GBV and SAS should suggest me before the Act is endorsed and enforced," said the Deputy Prime Minister.

Presentation on Domestic Violence Act

Mr Sabin Shrestha, Advocate, stating that witch accusation was one of the moving topics at present, blamed the weak law and order situation for rising cases of witch accusation and impunity to the perpetrators. He suggested amending the existing laws so that perpetrators of witch accusation and other GBV could be punished. He further explained about extending the period for filing cases against perpetrators and taking legal actions against them. He also said that most of the cases of witch accusations were committed by family members.

Remarks

Ms Dhana  G.C , Chairperson of NFOWRC, spoke about the contribution her organization had made to reduce domestic violence. She said that NFOWRC had been working as a loose network since 2004. She added that NFOWRC had been carrying out various campaigns at village and community levels in 37 districts, focusing on women's rescue. She further said that the organization had identified issues of citizenship, proportional representation, election methods and domestic violence. She said that she was happy to be a part of the event organized to mark the 104th International Women's Day and suggested to organize such programs at community level as well.

SP Mr Krishna Gautam, Chief of Women and Children Service Directorate, Nepal Police, said that more investigations should be made on the issue and victim's voices should be heard. Victims should not be left in a shameful condition and clarified that Nepal Police was always ready to investigate the incidents given the condition that such cases are reported to them.

Ms Cathy Riley, ACD, CARE Nepal, in her valedictory speech, thanked all the participants and the survivors of witch accusation who had dared retelling their agony, Nirmala Sharma and the entire team of SAS for organizing a very fantastic program. She also thanked Dhana GC and NFOWRC, the UK government, DFID and British Ambassador to Nepal for his insightful comments. She thanked all the community representatives featured in the video particularly Ms Amrita Khadka for demanding action against perpetrators, son of Raj Kumari Rana and daughter-in-law of Dhan Kumari Chaudhary for relating the sad incidents of witch accusation against their mother and mother-in-law respectively.

She also thanked Mr Dinesh Hari Adhikari, Secretary at the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare for his remarks and follow-up and the Deputy Prime Minister for inviting the civil society organizations for providing suggestion on the upcoming Act on Witch Accusation. She urged everybody for constituting an alliance to make the Act fruitful and thanked Ms Mohna Ansari, spokesperson of National Women's Commission, for her remarks and translation.

She also thanked Mr Guna Raj Luitel, Editor of Annapurna Post daily, and Mr Sabin Shrestha for their presentation and SP Mr Krishna Gautam, Chief of Women and Children Service Directorate, Nepal Police, for his remarks. She said that girls and women are CARE Nepal's agenda and to empower them to realize their all sorts of rights was their priority. She also congratulated the government of Nepal for their choice of theme of the 104th International Women's Day.

alt"The situation in which more than 51 percent of the population do not have equality is not acceptable to us," she said, urging all to be united to combat GBV and bring about change to tackle the issue of witch accusation and to form an alliance to ensure women's rights.

Wrap up and closing

Ms Sharma wrapped up the program.

A total of 204 people from various organizations including journalists, political leaders, religion and cultural experts, senior women activists, lawyers, doctors, professors, litterateurs, representatives from UN agencies, and I/NGOs working especially on women rights participated in the program.

Media Coverage

Almost all national level television including Nepal Television, ABC News, Terai Television, Image Channel, Himalaya Television, Kantipur Television, News 24 and Avenues Television had broadcast the news. All major F.M. stations like Radio Kantipur, Radio Nepal, Metro F.M., Ujyaalo Network, CIN, Radio Sagarmatha, Gorkha F.M. and Image F.M. aired the news of the program. Apart from electronic media, the mainstream daily newspapers like Republica, Himalaya Times, Annapurna Post, Karobar, The Himalayan Times, Rajdhani, The Rising Nepal and Gorkhapatra covered the news along with weeklies and online media.

 

 

 

 

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Activities

Interaction
In order to complement its initiatives to mainstream women's issues in the media and to initiate fresh discourse on the contemporary issues affecting the lives of women in general and women journalists in particular, SAS organizes interactions frequently. Over the years, SAS has earned a reputation of raising the economic, social, cultural, political and civil rights violation issues and holding interactions among journalists, women's rights activists, government officials, civil society leaders, opinion formers and other stakeholders. It has been interacting with the wider stakeholders on issues like women's representation in the Constituent Assembly (CA), political participation in all spheres of social life and their faire representation in all levels of political parties and on issues like domestic violence, witch accusation, dowry-related violence and other violence against women. During the run-up to elections to the CA, SAS organized many interactions among the stakeholders on its own and in partnership with other like-minded organizations, for instance.

Jingle/PSA
With an objective of informing, educating, and calling for an action on issues of press freedom, women's equal participation in state affairs, to end violence against women, to sensitize the general public on respecting the rights of people, to create public awareness gender equality and on other contemporary issues, SAS produces and broadcasts various jingles and public service announcements (PSAs) on different radio and television stations. While producing such jingles and PSAs, SAS pays attention to the target audience and broadcasts them in major languages of Nepal including Nepali. SAS often produces and broadcasts such informative audio-visuals in collaboration with other like-minded organizations, coalitions and social movements.

Training & Workshop
SAS has been carrying out various programs with an overarching goal of mainstreaming women's issues in the media and supportive activities with an objective of enhancing the capacity of women journalists in order to increase their participation in journalism and retain them in the profession. Right from its inception in 1996, SAS has been organizing various capacity-building programs for women journalists. Among them, Basic Journalism, Feature Writing and Investigative Reporting training and workshops are the major and regular activities of the organization. The journalists thus trained are given opportunity to contribute articles to its Feature Service in Nepali and English, SAS Radio and TV programs and to Sancharika Online.
The journalists trained by SAS have been producing feature stories, investigative reportage and other hard news and contributing to SAS-run media apart from other mainstream media both electronic and print they are affiliated with.

Press Release
Sancharika Samuha, being a pioneer forum of women journalists and communicators, works to safeguard the rights of female journalists, journalists in particular and women in general. In order to ward off possible violation of rights and to draw the attention of the state to provide justice to victims in the aftermath of rights violation plus to call for an action regarding inclusion, equality and meaningful participation of women in different fields of social life, SAS issues press releases.
It also issues press releases to condemn attack on press freedom and safety of journalists besides informing concerned state and non-state actors on its activities targeted to the betterment of the promotion and protection of the rights of women journalists in particular and media people in general. The organization also issues press release on issues of national importance and women's equal participation in decision-making bodies of the state.

Documentary
SAS produces documentaries to capture the reality of the lives of people mostly women whose basic rights are violated. It focuses on denial of the rights of women to acquire citizenship through matriarchy, domestic violence, gender-based violence, violence caused by harmful traditional practices such as dowry, deprivation of girl children from basic education, discrimination against girls and women in different fields of their social life. The organization produces and airs such documentaries with an objective of informing the general public on certain issues of rights violation and drawing the attention of the state to protect and promote their rights, thereby supporting to establish a gender-equal society. SAS has produced many documentaries on violence against women and has aired them through different television channels of Nepal.

Reports
SAS carries out studies on different issues mainly focusing on women journalists, press freedom, media monitoring, status of women journalists, violence against women, domestic violence, structural violence and gender discrimination. Traditional and cultural practices harmful to women are also another area of its advocacy. SAS advocates with and through the media primarily on the basis of the findings of the reports in order to change state policies and programs in favour of women.
The organization also prepares reports of collective campaigns carried out in different times depending on the urgency of issues and events. Likewise, SAS also prepares reports on media monitoring and documents and shares the findings of such studies. Reports prepared and shared by SAS have become very useful for policy-makers, implementers, students and scholars besides women's rights activists and apologists.

Television Programme
Since 4 November 2013, SAS has been producing television programme titled "Samakon" on Kantipur Television. The objective of the programme is to dig out the issues of gender-based violence, bring them to the notice of duty bearers, support survivors of such violence by providing them an opportunity to share the injustice, and create awareness among people in order to create a gender-friendly society.