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India: In India, talking about domestic violence and feminicides remains taboo

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Shraddha Walkar, 26 ans, victime de féminicide en mai 2022 en Inde. © France 24 Shraddha Walkar, 26, victim of feminicide in May 2022 in India.

In India, the murder of a young girl in May upset the country. Shraddha Walkar, 26, would have been killed by his boyfriend, who cut his body into pieces and kept them in a refrigerator for several days before scattering them in New Delhi. While the suspect was arrested on November 12, this case took a political turn under the background of interreligious tensions to the point of relegating to the background the phenomenon of female in India.

The murder of Shaddha Walkar has been holding all of India in suspense since the arrest, on November 12, of his companion accused of having killed him and then dismembered in May 2022. Victim of violence physical, however, she had alerted the police two years ago.

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Somya Lakhani, journalist at the online information site The Quint, and covering female affairs for over ten years, believes that "the theatricalization of this case by the media is appalling".

"At the same time, I think they are just denigrating the woman who has just died. It is feminicide. I mean, you can see it differently but it is feminicide", explains -It to France 24. The journalist also says she is shocked by the lack of sensitivity of Indian televisions in the treatment of this case.

Political turn

This drama did not allow the heart of the public debate domestic violence. Rather, the judicial affair took a political turn. Because Shraddha Walkar is Hindu, and his companion, Muslim.

Human rights activists are concerned about the way these cases target Muslims in the country. "So instead of considering it as a case of domestic violence and talking about what must be done. The media play a major role in the polarization of society and they speak of this affair as 'Muslims against Hindus' and how Muslim boys attract Hindu women and how they attack them and kill them and so on, "said Shabnam Hashmi, human rights activist.

Talking about domestic violence and feminicides, however, remains taboo in India, while almost a third of women have physical or sexual violence.

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