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Woman Human Rights Defender WHRD Nepal at risk
WHRD in risk in Nepal defending on the case of LGBTI issue
WOREC Nepal and National Alliance for women human rights defender show serious concern on the issue of security of Laxmi Ghalan, WHRD and president of Mitini Nepal. Mitini Nepal is an organization working on the issue of LGBTI especially lesbian. Since 4pm, 28th August office of Mitini Nepa
l is surrounded by police force. They are investigating in Laxmi's rent room without permission. Our concern is that why they are searching in Mitini Nepal and rent room of Lami jee.
According to Laxmi Ghalan she is receiving threat from phone. Some people threaded vandalized her office (Mitini Nepal) if she raised the case of Rajani Shahi. Right now some civil dressed people are staying near office observing different materials, bike of Laxmi.
Mitini Nepal has been closed and no one can work in office due to the risk and police may arrest them and could not fight for justice to Rajani's case. Laxmi Ghalan and Mari Bajracharya displaced from their rent room afraid by police because police has been there while they were out of room.
Rajani and her partner Premkumari have no safe shelter from tonight. They have no safe environment to live due to they are lesbian. If police arrest them and they are submitted to the family member and society will not accepted them.
Understanding as the situation of Nepal
All society are not accepting that Rajani is lesbian so this issue is very critical and there is increasing with WHRD and victims due to unaware such LGBTI issue. Government agencies and other stakeholders are not sensitive about this issue and not supporting to the defenders. So WHRDs who are defending in this issue are in risk.
We would also like to reiterate that RAJANI SHAHI after self identifying herself as sexual minority (lesbian) has been taking support and doing follow-up with the organization named MITINI NEPAL ( LGBTI based organization). As per MITINI NEPAL Rajani Shahi from 8th July 2012 was not allowed to meet her partner Prem Kumari and was taken away from Kathmandu. For this reason Prem Kumari has been asking the security agencies for Rajani Shahi's security and well being, this has been known to WOREC. Rajani after taken to home was not happy and was mistreated at home, which she informed to Prem Kumari; WOREC came to know that NHRC (National Human Rights Commission) has been monitoring this case. On 26th august 2012, Rajani left her house to again stay with her partner Prem and has formally requested with the application that there is a growing threat to their lives from the family. On the basis of the application from Rajani and Chairperson Mitini Nepal, Laxmi Dhalan, we would like to appeal.
Points of demands
- We demand for the safety and security of both Rajani Shahi and Prem Kumari
- Sensitization on the issues of LGBTI issues to the family of rajani and other stakeholders involved in a must.
- Steps should be taken to implement the directives of the Supreme Court on behalf of the rights of LGBTI.
- We appeal for the security of Women human rights defenders of WOREC and MITINI Nepal.
- We appeal security for the staffs of MITINI Nepal as we recently had been hearing that security forces have encircled the office of MITINI.
Rajani Shahi was suffering the violence from her husband. She had come at the WOREC Nepal with the hope of getting justice along with her 10 years daughter. She got arrange marriage 12 years ago (Feb, 2001). Her husband behaved well with her in the beginning of marriage but after some years her husband started to give physical torture. He started to bit her regularly. She did not see any good reason to live with him while suffering such torture. As she felt very insecure to live with him longer, she decided to live separately from her husband. She lodged the case at court for divorce on 4th June 2012. However, her own parents did not support her decision. So, she could not live with her parent's house as well. And she started to live with her friend to hide from her husband. Her husband started to search her everywhere. He started to give threaten to every person who supported her. She was feeling very bad. On 30th June evening, she came at WOREC Nepal and asked support Ms. Renu Rajbhandari to search safe place for living some days with her daughter. And WOREC had been providing the support to live her at office for the last 5 days.
On 4th July, She had registered the case for divorce at the district court before she came at the WOREC Nepal. District court of Kathmandu had asked her and her husband to attend the court for the discussion on the case. But while she entered the court, around 30 people came at the mini-bus and without any speaking they started to show criminal activities, they used the vulgar word on her and WOREC staffs, and that group taken her in a kidnapping way. After that we don't know about her whereabouts. We are very serious about her. We have submitted the letter on this regards to Head quarter of Nepal police, National Human Rights Commission, National women Commission, Office of Prime minister with a request to public her situation.
We are very surprised that this incident has happened in the premises of court, and the police who were present there at that time did not show any response about this cruel incident. We have also mentioned this issue on the press release.
On 7th July WOREC Nepal organized press meet to know the situation of Rajani Shahi. After hot discussion DSP Arun BC supported to find the place where Rajani was kept. One taskforce committee formed and Mitini Nepal, Blue diamond society, NWC, NAWHRD were also actively involved in this case and some members of taskforce committee went to meet her at rehabilitation center (Arogya). When we met her she accepted that she is lesbian and request for rescue.
Different meeting and discussion were held with NHRC and stakeholder on the case of Rajani but she was sent with her family. After one month she came on communication with Laxmi Ghalan and her partner.
What is going on
- Meeting with GBV unit yesterday joint secretary Ramesh Dhakal, kriti thapa and sumana
- Attention letter submitted NHRC, NWC, GBV unit, EU working group
- Meeting with member of Mohana Ansari, member of national women commission
- Meeting with PBI
- Letter sent to police
- Searching safe shelter for 2 WHRD and Rajani and Premkumari