My name is Sumedha Toppo and I am a victim of domestic violence. I live in one of the villages which is located in the Darjeeling district of India. As of now, I have been married for over ten years now.
It all started from the very first year of our marriage. My husband literally thrashed me every single day. I would plead and beg him for mercy but he never showed any. Soon after, I gave birth to a baby girl. I assumed that having a family would bring about a positive change, but to my sorrow, things got even worse. He got into gambling and would come home drunk every night. In that drunken state he would batter me till I bled. During those hours of the night our daughter would coil herself up in some corner of our hut and sob and tremble out of fear.
In 2010, despite the fact that I fell ill, my inconsiderate husband continued torturing me. So I filed a complaint against him. Thereafter we lived separately. In 2013, we reunited considering the fact that we had to plan and decide our daughter’s future. Sadly, he had not changed even one bit.
One night, he woke up at midnight and tried to kill me. I screamed and shouted out to my relatives to come and rescue me, but none of them showed up. Just when I was giving up on myself, Tumpa didi came to my rescue. Tumpa didi is one of the associates of the Darjeeling Mary Ward Social Centre who resides in our village.
I spent that night at her place. The next morning few more associates from DMWSC came to help me file a proper case. Soon after, my husband was arrested.
Disclaimer : The identities of the victim and of associated characters have been modified. Documented by Tarunima Jasiwal