Women lead for social change

BAJURA: Ambika Bohara, 32, of Budhinanda Municipality-3, seems determined to bring about a social change with her campaign to eradicate social evils. She, along with other women in the village, have been fighting against the dominant treatment they face during menstruation and pregnancy.

“I had been forced by my in-laws to shelter in the animal shed during menstruation. However, in the present scenario -- with women opting to stay at home during menstruation -- the situation is transforming, of which I have been a part for the last eight years,” says Ambika. We were made to identify Chhaupadi as an ill-practice under a training we received through an organisation, she added.

The saying 'charity begins at home' was put well into practice when she initiated to end Chhaupadi at her own home.

Meanwhile, Pramila Adhikari of Badhu, Himali Rural Municipality-7 has also been advocating for social change. Chhaupadi has been completely rejected by 195 families that dwell in Badhu. Another social activist, Sharmila Adhikari claimed that local women have also been spreading awareness in people about cleanliness, control of alcoholism, nutrition, and vegetable farming.

Strict monetary fine of as much as Rs 2,500 has also been decided for first-time offenders, who ignite quarrels and violence under the influence of alcohol, in Badhu village.

Similarly, other malpractices like untouchability and gambling, among others are also gradually being addressed in the community under female leadership.