NHRC notice to Rajasthan on branding women as witches

New Delhi, June 13 (IANS) The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday issued notice to the Rajasthan government on the plight of women branded as witches in the state’s Bhilwara district.

Taking sou motu cognizance of the issue through media reports, the commission has learned that most often widows or women without any family support have been branded as witches.

“Some of them were tortured brutally or even killed. Some of them were forced to leave their homes, and their properties were grabbed by powerful people,” a statement from the commission said.

The state authorities have allegedly not taken effective action against either the offenders or to curb this menace.

Accordingly, the commission has observed that the issue if true, raises serious violation of human rights of the hapless and helpless women in Rajasthan.

“The notice has been issued to the Chief Secretary and Director General of Police, Government of Rajasthan calling for reports in the matter. They have been asked to indicate the action taken by the law enforcement in each such incident and the steps taken by the State authorities to address the issue,” said the statement.

–IANS

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