In 2014, research by the Acid Survivors Foundation India (ASFI) revealed that 349 people in India, mostly women, had acid thrown on them in deliberate assaults. These acid attacks are violent, gender-based crimes that have become more common in India.

From January 2002 to October 2010, 153 cases of acid assault were reported in Indian print media, while 174 judicial cases were reported for the year of 2000. These numbers does include unreported cases as victims are silenced by the perpetrators.

Reasons motivating these violent attacks include rejection of marriage proposals, dowry disagreements, refusal of sexual advances and failing to bear a male child or even when a woman is thought to be “too proud”.

Initiatives like the “Stop Acid Attacks” Campaign in India aim to empower and rehabilitate women whose lives and bodies have been permanently scarred by gender-motivated acid attacks.

Author: Yemi Olarinre