1st CONFERENCE FOR FORMATION OF
“NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR MEN”
23rd SEPTEMBER, 2018 NEW DELHI
PRESS RELEASE – ENGLISH
Headline: Voice for “National Commission for Men” echoes in the Capital, hundreds join in support
New Delhi, September 23, 2018 : Hundreds gathered in the National Capital today for first ever conference about need for formation of “National Commission for Men” on the lines of National Commission for Women, calling it a step towards equal gender justice. Organized at the Constitution Club of India by a group of people who identified themselves as concerned citizens moved by the injustice on men because of misuse of gender based laws, absence of laws protecting men from domestic violence and gender based crimes and apathy of the system towards men’s and boy’s issues, the conference touched upon various issues and subject that impact lives of men and boys in India. The organizers said while there is a commission for problems and grievances of women, children, animals, education, minorities and many more, there is not a single platform where men can report their issues if they are victims of harassment and torture in domestic setup.
Honourable Chief Guest and keynote speakers for the conference were Member of Parliament Shri Haranarayan Rajbhar and Anshul Verma who addressed the audience on Need, Perspective, Challenges and Vision for Men’s Commission, underlining the importance of such a platform in today’s times to ensure that no one faces injustice because of their gender. Both the members have extended their support and have assured that they will move a private member bill to take this idea ahead. Mr. Anshul Verma had in past spoken in the parliament about misuse of IPC 498A calling its victims “Shaadi Ke Shaheed” aka Martyrs of Marriage.
Ms. Pooja Bedi, famous bollywood actor and writer, special guest and also a keynote speaker at the conference expressed her views about men’s commission, saying in current times there are many women who are misusing their rights and there is a need for a body that can listen to men’s problems too. She stressed how true equality means support and justice for all irrespective of gender.
Other distinguished speakers at the conference were Dr. S K Rawal, Medical Director and Chief of Genito Uro- Oncology Services at Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute & Research Centre. He spoke about Prostate Cancer & Men’s Health and the lack of dedicated efforts to tackle these problems. As per data shared by organizers, while several questions have been raised in Parliament over government’s initiatives to combat breast cancer, only one question has been raised ever for Prostate Cancer though it impacts millions of men in India. Mr. Rawal enlightened the audience on how the government needs to focus on these men’s health problems too. Dr. Rakesh Kapur, Healthcare Management Consultant and Child Rights Expert spoke about Importance of fathers from a social, psychological and legal perspective and quoted research and experiences of medical & legal fraternity from across the world. Mr. Shivpriya Alok, Independent Filmmaker and Director of documentary “Gandi Baat” discussed a much ignored and socially unaccepted issue of Male Child Sexual Abuse and the apathy towards this problem. Mr. Shonee Kapoor, a Legal Expert and a Men’s Rights Activist gave concrete ideas over the need for creation of a comprehensive law to tackle false accusations on Men and various measures that the government needs to take to compensate men who suffer such harassment. Mr. Anil Kumar, Co-Founder, Save Indian Family Foundation presented the data on Male Suicides in India and immediate need for bridging the empathy gap for Men which is causing these suicides to grow every year. He shared how domestic disputes take lives of several men in India today but we don’t even recognize that men suffer domestic violence. Mr. Joginder Singh Jogi and Dr. Indu Subhash spoke about the need for each member of the society to come together and support the idea of Men’s Commission for a better and safe future for their son’s.
The conference also saw a very emotional personal sharing by family of Arvind Bharti, a young lawyer who committed suicide last year because of harassment and false cases by his ex-wife. Documentary film “Martyrs of Marriage” by Deepika Narayan Bhardwaj on misuse of IPC 498A were also shown during the conference.
A 15 point memorandum of demands was handed over by the organizers to Members of parliament which included demands like:
- Formation of “National Commission for Men,” a dedicated body to look after men’s issues, men’s well being, men’s welfare and injustice that men are facing today in Indian society.
- To celebrate International Men’s Day in the parliament on November 19 and have dedicated discussion on men’s issues on that day and express gratitude to men for their contribution towards society in every sphere.
- A National Helpline for Men where men can also report their problems and seek help.
- Special campaigns for prevention of suicide by men. Number of men who commit suicide is twice of women. Government needs to understand resolve the issues because of which so many men are killing themselves.
- Gender neutral campaigns against sexual, physical, economical abuse and exploitation as large number of boys are also victims of such abuse. Better living environment for boys who are rescued from such abuse. Assessing problems that young boys face and their redressal.
- Nationwide campaign for the awareness of “Prostate Cancer” and other health issues faced majorly by men.
- National Family Health Survey and other government funded data collection measures to include “Men” too while assessing gender problems. Right now only women are asked about domestic, physical, sexual or financial abuse.
- Rehabilitation, assistance and skill development for men who are homeless and shunned by the society.
- Review of women centric laws to prevent and address their misuse. Compensation and rehabilitation of men who are affected by false accusations.
- Collection of data related to crimes against men and formation of gender neutral laws to address these crimes.
- Abolish or Amend laws that are anti-men and violate constitutional rights of men.
- Shared parenting a must during divorce battles so that fathers are not alienated from the life of their children.
- Better living conditions for men who are languishing in jails as under-trials.
- Concrete measures against male child labour which is prevalent across India.
- Better working environment, healthcare facilities and mental health support for men doing toughest jobs across various industries.
A resolution was taken at the end of the conference by audience, speakers, organizers and activists alike that the activities to make men’s commission a reality shall continue until a body is setup by the government to look into men’s issues.
ORGANIZER: BARKHA TREHAN
ORGANIZING TEAM: ABHISHEK DASGUPTA, ARNAZ HATHIRAM, DEEPIKA NARAYAN BHARDWAJ, GAURAVJIT SAINI, K D JHA, KIRAN CHAWLA KAPOOR, KUMAR S RATAN, LALIT SHARMMA, MADHAV ANAND, ROOPENSHU PRATAP SINGH, VIKAS MALIK
DESIGN PARTNERS: RACHNA DESIGNS, HATS OFF DIGITAL
ASSOCIATE SPONSORS: SAVE INDIAN FAMILY FOUNDATION
FOR MEDIA ENQUIRIES CONTACT:
BARKHA TARHAN: 9311089946
DEEPIKA BHARDWAJ: 9911300336
ROOPENSHU SINGH: 8800844960