April 18, 2018 05:00 AM NPT
By: Krishna Oli
Shamans and faith healers of Badimalika Municipality in Bajura making a pledge not to isolate menstruating women in Chhaupadi sheds, among other things at the Municipality’s office on Tuesday. They have signed a seven-point commitment in this connection. Photo: Krishna Oli/Republica
BAJURA, April 18: Shamans of Badimalika Municipality have assured that they will co-operate with the municipality to eradicate the ill-practice of Chaupadi.
During a program organized by the municipality, shamans and witch doctors made a commitment that they won't pose any kind of obstructions for eliminating this tradition. In fact, they stated that they will help break the Chaupadi sheds.
Dammar Mahat, chairperson of Badimalika-2, informed that the shamans of all local units of the municipality signed a seven-point commitment and also pledged not to promote Chaupadi.
The municipality has been conducting awareness programs regarding women's health. Deputy Mayor of the municipality, Kabita Bista, informed that discussions are being held with various stakeholders regarding how to eliminate gender violence and other ill traditions.
As per the new rules, no woman should be mistreated, discriminated against or abandoned during menstruation. Besides that, locals have been strictly forbidden to marry off their daughter before the age of 20. Those attending the feast of early marriage will also be subjected to punishment. Not just that, parents have been told to treat their children equally regardless of their gender.
It is interesting that the shamans have also pledged to stop people from drinking in public places. The municipality decided to convince the shamans to make such pledges as such people have a great influence on people on the issues related to caste-based discrimination as well as Chaupadi tradition, early marriage and other social stigmas. It's not like the shamans were not warned earlier, but the people's representatives thought it will be more effective to make them sign a written commitment.
Shaman Khadak Guyal admitted that their conservative mentality have encouraged a lot of ill practices in the society. But he assured that it won't be repeated from now onward.
"Not just ours but the traditional thinking of all women must be changed to eradicate this practice completely," Guyal added.