Nearly 100 organisations from Mangalore, Bangalore and the rest of the State will participate in a rally to be held in the city opposing all types of atrocities against women on Friday (International Women’s Day), said Vidya Dinker, member of the core group of Forum Against Atrocities on Women.

She told presspersons here on Monday that the rally would start from Bunts Hostel Circle and culminate at Karavali Festival Ground with a public meeting to be addressed by Bhanwari Devi from Rajasthan, the main force behind the Vishaka Guidelines Against Sexual Harassment at the Workplace.

The rally is part of a number of events and activities that will be organised in the city over three days, beginning Wednesday, to highlight issues concerning violence against women.

The organisations will focus on establishing fast track courts, delivery of justice within a time frame, establishing a government department to deal with sexual harassment cases. They will also urge the government to rehabilitate sexual harassment and rape victims and fix responsibility for delay in investigation and action. The groups will also focus on setting up of sexual harassment prevention committees in all sectors including the unorganised and informal sectors where a majority of women work and inclusion of lessons emphasising equality in schools and colleges.

On Wednesday, women dressed in black will form a chain from Hampankatta Circle to University College, to commemorate ‘Women in black’, a peaceful protest against war and fundamentalism started by women in Palestine and Israel. The same day, a film on women will be screened at the Department of Women’s Studies, Mangalore University.

On Thursday, a seminar on ‘Violence against women: causes and different dimensions’ will be held at the Department of Women’s Studies, Mangalore University. Urmila Pawar, writer and Dalit activist, will inaugurate the event, said Shobha Devi, Centre for Women’s Studies, Mangalore University.

Several like-minded women’s organisations have come together under the banner of Mahila Dourjanya Virodi Vedike (Forum Against Atrocities on Women) and the Mahila Sanghagala Jala (Network of Women’s Groups) to observe International Women’s Day in the city. Mangalore has been chosen as the venue in order to highlight the place where women have been attacked in the name of culture, girls like Sowjanya and Malathi have been raped and murdered, and serial killer Mohan Kumar raped and killed more than 18 young women, said Ms. Dinker.

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