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The woman sounded nervous on the phone. The helpline counsellor who took her call asked her to make some excuse and come out to meet her. It would be difficult, the woman replied; it was, after all, in the middle of a Covid-19 lockdown and her husband was home. She had sneaked onto the terrace to put through a quick call to the helpline. Her husband had lost his job in the pandemic and had begun drinking and abusing her.
Women were the most affected when India imposed a strict lockdown last year for almost 70 days.