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Allyn Gaestel – Christian Science Monitor – Thursday, 07 March 2013 (originally published 02 Mar)
In this tiny riverside town in Nepal’s remote Far West region, a spitfire activist explains his fight against chaupadi, the local custom of isolating women from their families during menstruation.
For generations here, menstruating women have slept outside of their homes, in small sheds or in the family stable. They are considered impure and treated as untouchable, so they cannot enter the house or touch communal water or food. The activist, Dhurbar Sunar, is not having it: “I think this is a social crime in terms of women’s rights,” he says.
Mr. Sunar is the Project Coordinator at Samabikas, a local organization pushing to abolish chaupadi here in Achham district and elevate women’s status. They work village by village, declaring them “chaupadi free” as they go . . .