TODAY -

Consultation for livelihood and legal redressal of women survivors held
Conflict Widows Forum needs to be established: Yambem Laba

Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, September 24 2011: "From village to negotiating table", a community consultation for livelihood and legal redressal of women survivors of armed violence was held at the conference hall of the Classic Hotel today.

The function which was organized by the North East India Women Initiative for Peace, an initiative of the Manipur Women Gun Survivors Network and CAFI was attended by Yambem Laba, former Member, Manipur Human Rights Commission, Binalakshmi Nepram, founder, Manipur Women Gun Survivors Network as the Guest of Honours.

Speaking on the occasion, Yambem Laba said that as the state is in a conflict situation, a lot of women have become widows because this situation.

In order to highlight their problems and to find ways and means to address their problems at large, a Conflict Widows Forum need to be established in the state.

Due to the absence of such a forum, the problems of the conflict widows are increasing rapidly.

He further went on to say that the Manipuri society today is facing the impact of the use of guns in elections.

Many have died leaving behind widows and orphans.

Sometimes the surviving widows and orphans experience such situations that they prefer to die rather than live in such conditions.

For quite long we have been living under the barrel of guns.

We need to come out of this state of affairs and breathe freely, he said.

Speaking out before the public, Edina Ningthoujam (30), who is women survivor of conflict situation in the state, said that her husband (N Anand) was killed in a fake encounter on January 21, 2009.He was reportedly picked up from DM College and was taken to Senapati where he was physically tortured and ultimately shot to dead.

Locals of the nearby village show N Anand being brought by security personnel in Senapati and killing him after he was beaten up.

But none of the villagers was willing to stand witness to the incident when she approached them.

As such, her appeal to the National Human Rights Commission for justice has been delayed.

She further went on to say that such a gathering will enable the surviving widows to come out in the open and discussed their problems, help them to be economically independent.

In fact, it encourages them to live a better life.

Advocate Premlata, panelist in the discussion said that there is nothing to fear about becoming a witness, people should come out and be witness so that justice is given to the victims.

She further said that there are lots of government schemes for the widows.

But it hardly reaches the beneficiaries.

Even getting forms for these schemes is a problem, when approached officials sometimes say forms are over or the forms are with the MLA, which is not acceptable at all.

The government should see that the schemes reach the beneficiaries.


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