Minster for Women and Child Development: Raise pension for Devadasi women
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Devadasi. A Sanskrit term used to describe a girl dedicated to worship a deity or a temple for her entire life, losing all control over their bodies, dignity, and respect. This practice is deeply rooted in the communities bordering Andhra and Karnataka and was finally outlawed in 1988. Today, there are about 22,941 Devadasis in Karnataka. It is indeed infuriating to think of the number of years it took to abolish a practice so abominable. Infuriating to think that out of a misguided notion of devotion to religion and dire conditions, countless women were stripped of all dignity and were forced to work as sex slaves.
Today, most of the women of Raichur work as masons or coolies, earning less than Rs. 100 a day. The children of such women, being illegitimate, are also ostracized.
In an effort to make their living conditions better, we urge the Government to raise their monthly pension from Rs. 1,500 to Rs. 3000. It is unfair that they are living with the consequences of who they were and it is time that the Government raises the pension. We are already 20 years too late. Help us spread the word and sign this petition.
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