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Life

Kashmir's tribal women fight the stigma of birth control

Many women unable talk about birth control with their husbands

Members of Jammu and Kashmir's Gujjar-Bakerwal ethnic group, Najma Jan and Tahira Akhter say that birth control in their community has such a stigma attached to it that they are unable to raise the subject even with their husbands. (Photo by Safina Nabi)

GANDERBAL DISTRICT, JAMMU & KASHMIR -- Najma Jan, a frail and weak-looking woman in her late 20s, sits in a traditional kitchen with multicolored walls and a range of steel utensils.

Married for around 10 years, Najma has three children. Two of them, aged 7 and 5, take turns sitting in her lap. The third, aged 9, smiles shyly through the kitchen window.

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