SWISSAID is Switzerland based international organisation engaged in 9 countries across the globe and works on issues like gender equality, climate crisis, agroeconomy and many more. ILS Law College and SWISSAID have been jointly carrying out many initiatives especially for addressing the gender equality issues.

Women issues have been a matter of serious concern since ages. Even while celebrating 75 years of Independence, we are struggling to give just and equitable treatment to women in our society. Their lives are full of challenges since birth which continue till their last breath. Women’s life is full of discrimination, deprivation and violence. This is seen in the form of female foeticide, school dropouts, early marriages, forced marriages, domestic violence, sexual abuse, harassment for dowry, etc. Forces like caste, religion, region intersect with gender and further aggravate the problems of women. Thus, women often women in rural, low income, less educated settings are likely to suffer more than others differently placed.

Studies show that even in progressive States like Maharashtra the picture is far from encouraging. Especially in Marathwada region of Maharashtra the position of women is alarming and needs urgent intervention. With an aim to ameliorate the position of women in this  region, ILS Law College has collaborated with an international NGO – SWISSAID. ILS Law College and SWISSAID have been active in addressing women’s issues, especially in Marathwada region of Maharashtra.

This collaboration has resulted in fruitful outcomes like:

1. Development of User Manuals

National Family Health Survey 4 revealed that around 25 per cent of Indian women are victims of domestic violence. The enactment of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 has not brought any significant change, mainly due to poor awareness and lack of proper implementation of the Act. Hence, Women’s Studies Centre of ILS Law College and Tata Institute of Social Sciences in association with SWISSAID came together and prepared a set of seven manuals / booklets. These booklets are victim friendly and would enable a victim of domestic violence to get immediate help from all the stakeholders / duty bearers under the Act. The set of seven books cover separate topics like gender justice and domestic violence, role of judges, role of protection officers, role of lawyers, role of medical facility providers, role of police and the role of social service providers. These booklets will help in creating more awareness among the authorities as well as the women regarding the Domestic Violence Act, 2005.

The booklets were released at the hands of Hon’ble Justice Satyaranjan Dharmadhikari, Judge, Bombay High Court.

Representatives from Sehat Organisation, lawyers and other experts have assisted in the preparation of the manuals.

Click Here for the Manual on Role of the Protection Officer.

Click Here for the Manual on Role of the Lawyers.

Click Here for the Manual on Role of the Medical Facility.

Click Here for the Manual on Role of the Police.

Click Here for the Manual on Role of the Service Providers.


2. Workshop for addressing challenges faced in prohibiting child marriages

A two-day State-level Workshop was organized  on  12th and 13th August 2022 in association with ILS Law College and SWISSAID to discuss and come up with effective solutions to the problem of child marriage. The workshop was attended by 39 social workers from 29 districts, 13 Child Protection and Child Marriage Prohibition Officers, 7 police officers and Teachers from the law college. The students of ILS Legal Aid Centre also participated in the workshop in online mode.

The workshop was inaugurated by the Principal District and Sessions Judge, Shri. Sanjay Deshmukh.  He noted that the issue of child marriage is very important and there is a need for more awareness in the society. He considered preventing child marriage as an important step towards women empowerment.

The dignitaries present at the workshop included Shri. Rahul More, Deputy Commissioner, Women and Child Development, Maharashtra State, Manisha Biraris, Assistant Commissioner (Planning), Department of Women and Child Development, Maharashtra State, Dr. Jaya Sagde, Former Director, Centre for Women’s Studies, ILS Law College, Dr. Manisha Gupte, Founder, MASUM (in absentia), Mr. Rajesh Puranik, Senior Inspector of Police, Department of Social Security, Pune, Dr. Nishit Kumar, Founder Director and M.D. , Centre for Social and Behaviour Change Communication, Pooja Yadav,  Centre for Social and Behaviour Change Communication, Sarita Sankaran, Consultant (Maharashtra State), Child Protection, UNICEF, Alpa Vora, Child Protection Centre, UNICEF, Dr. Vaijayanti Patwardhan, Gynecologist and Public Health Researcher, Mr. Santosh Shinde, Vidhayak Bharati,  Sneha Girdhari, SwissAid India, Dr. Nitish Nawsagaray, Assistant Professor, ILS Law College, Vaijayanti Joshi, Honorary Secretary, Indian Law Society, Kavita Gandhi, Head, SWISSAID India, Dr. Deepa Paturkar, Professor and In-charge Principal, ILS Law College.

The workshop discussed in detail the issue of child marriage, its consequences and laws, as well as the government’s plans for the empowerment of women and children.  On behalf of the Government, Rahul More, Deputy Commissioner, Women and Child Development, State of Maharashtra, briefed about the measures being taken by the Government at various levels to prevent child marriage. He noted the points discussed and the issues / concerns raised by different stakeholders attending the workshop and assured that the Government will provide all the necessary assistance in combating child marriage. He emphasised the need of coordinated action amongst various departments of the government like Department of Education, Health Department and Women and Child Development Department.

Group photo

Ms Vaijayanti Joshi felicitating the Chief Guest Mr. Sanjay Deshmukh

Dr. Deepa Paturkar felicitating Ms Manisha Biraris

Dr. Jaya Sagade speaking at the workshop

Dignitaries at the Valedictory Ceremony of the Workshop

3. Development of Manual on Prohibition of Child Marriage
4. Development of a Documentary on One Stop Crisis Centre