UNDP supports Nepal Police to reduce Gender Based Violence

11 Aug 2010

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A Letter of Agreement was signed between UNDP and the Nepal Police to engage in capacity-building of Nepal Police officers in gender issues, focusing mainly on Gender Based Violence (GBV).

According to Mr. Rabindra Pratap Shah, the Assistant Inspector General and Head of the Human Resource Department, "UNDP support will complement the national capacity-building efforts in preventing and managing GBV and enhance the capacity of the national police force to meet the international standards."

Nepal enacted the Domestic Violence (Offence and Punishment) Act in 2009, making accountable all Government Agencies to prevent GBV, including the Police. GBV is deeply prevalent in Nepal in various forms such as inflicting physical, sexual and psycho-social damages, domestic violence, human trafficking, forced early marriages (minors), dowry-related homicides, female infanticide, rape and menstrual confinement. 

Women survivors of GBV in rural areas face many challenges to report, mostly due to illiteracy and inconducive social and cultural norms. 

"Despite the sharp increase of GBV survivors who approach over 2,000 police stations across the country, the allocation of budget to police to deal with GBV has remained limited", highlighted Ms. Parbati Thapa, the Deputy Inspector-General, Head of Women's and Children's Service unit.

The UNDP Enhancing Access to Justice for Consolidating Peace in Nepal project in collaboration with the Nepal Bar Association, is currently providing legal aid services in four districts for those who require additional social and legal support. The legal desks placed in police stations have encouraged the rural women to report and the number of women reporting GBV cases has increased significantly as well. 

Ms. Anne-Isabelle Degryse-Blateau emphasized that it is important for Nepal Police to strengthen the positive, progressive institutional systems and mechanisms that can help ensure women's security in all parts of Nepal. She also indicated that UN agencies are aligning their efforts in the prevention and management of GBV in Nepal in support of the National Plan of Action.

The technical and financial support for this programme will be provided by the UNDP Bureau of Crisis Prevention and Recovery (BCPR)'s Global Programme on Advancing Gender Equality in Post-Conflict Settings which has recruited and posted ten senior Gender Advisors across the globe to respond to the gender needs of the post conflict countries and Nepal is one of them.