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The Rape Capital of India: Be Safe – Tips for Women and Men

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Anshul Tewari

“A woman is raped in the Indian capital every 24 hours and, in an overwhelming majority of cases registered by police in the last six months, the rapists were known to the victims.” said a report in the Times Of India in the year 2004. According to some statistics, only one in 69 rape cases in India are even reported. Only 20 % of those reported result in convictions for the rape accused.

In the first four months of 2008, over 330 cases of rape were registered in Delhi. In 98% of these cases, the rapist was known to the victim. With a recent boom in the number of rapes in Delhi, the city has earned itself the dubious distinction of being called the ‘Rape Capital of India’. Moreover, everyday, girls travelling via public transport have face all sorts of abuses and exploitations.

Delhi, which is known for it’s heritage and the Parliament of India and the various embassies, has left no stone unturned to earn itself a place on the map for being the city with the most rape cases in India.

In the past week alone, over 12 rape cases have been registered in Delhi, out of which a majority are gang rapes. The victims are usually selected by the rapists on the basis of their behaviour. A girl who is introvert and shy and displays fear and lack of confidence is an easier victim of rape than a girl who is confident and alert.

Rape, being one of the worst crimes ever, needs to be tackled well.

The men who commit rape are usually drunk, sexually excited and in a mood for vengance, thus they end up raping a poor soul. Lack of sex education, disrespect for the fairer sex, unsatisfied needs and a number of other factors lead to this crime.

But, the fact is that the girl who is raped is, in a majority of cases, burdened under the social stigma. She cannot live a normal life even if she wants to. The society would not allow her to. Rape is a crime which virtually ends a girls life forever, she has to live with that burden for the rest of her life. And adding to this, the society lays its burdens on the poor girl.

In Noida, in a gang rape case, the parents and the relatives of the rapists said, “It is the job of boys to do such things. Boys will always remain like this. The girl who was raped must be ashamed of herself for indulging in such acts. If it would have been our daughter, we would have killed her.” These were villagers, and what is worse is that 60-70% of India is village. So, does a majority of India think this way?

These problems can never be solved until and unless we, as a society and as one people come together against such acts of barbarity.

Youth Ki Awaaz brings to you a few tips and steps on how to be safe:

How to prevent a potential rape? (for women)
While you never know if you will be a rape victim, there are ways to protect yourself against being attacked. By following these tips, you’ll make the world a little safer for yourself. Take a self-defense class. You will get all the information you need and skills to protect yourself.

Stay aware. Do not jog with your iPod because attackers are looking for easy, distracted prey. The same can be said for talking on your cell phone. On the other hand, if you feel someone is following you, it can help to pull out your cell phone and pretend to be talking to someone because your “conversation partner” would be aware of an attack. If your potential attacker is going for “no witnesses”, they might back off and change their mind. You can even pretend that you are meeting up with someone and they are already here/heading this way VERY soon. Don’t say “5 minutes” or the attacker may only decide to take action quicker. If they think you are in safe hands or will be in less than a minute, they might back off.

Learn to trust your gut instincts. It could save you from being raped or worse. If you feel uneasy or unsure in anyway, it is in your best interest to get away and get help. Use common sense.

Understand that your hairstyle could benefit an attacker. Ponytails are the number one style that rapists look for because they are easy to grab and you can be held with them.

Carry defensive items only if you know how to use them. Anything that could hurt a potential attacker can also be used against you if you are not well trained and comfortable with the item. If you are going to carry a handgun, make sure to take classes in its use, practice often at a firing range, and apply for a concealed weapons permit; if you carry a knife, take a course in the most effective way to use it. Remember that even an umbrella or purse can be used as a weapon against an attacker, and has less chance of being turned against you.

Yell, shout and draw attention to yourself. Attackers usually have an idea of how the attack will happen. Disrupt that idea. Fight like hell and yell loudly and strongly; There is a common belief it is better to call “fire” than help – however many believe this is misguided, if not plain wrong. The ‘fire idea” is based on the belief that people don’t want to get involved in assisting therefore you should trick them into believing there is a fire. This could be unwise. Numerous bystander studies (e.g. Latane and Darley) show the reason bystanders do not help is a simple one; confusion. Bystanders are unsure of what is going on; do the attacker and victim know each other? etc. This would suggest it is better to “tell it like it is” and yell “POLICE!” or “HELP!” This – especially “POLICE”- is more likely to scare the attacker and alert bystanders to the truth of the situation – not confuse them further by yelling “Fire” when there clearly isn’t one. Studies have also suggested this effective strategy: pointing at an individual bystander and saying “you sir, in the white shirt, I need your help now! – This man is attacking me…” Tell it like it is, and point to an individual.

Take a basic self defense course, such as Rape Aggression Defense (RAD). Contact your local police office for programs such as RAD.

Stay careful at parties and bars. Don’t drink anything that somebody gives you–always open and order your own drinks. Never, ever leave a drink unattended for even a moment. Keep your hand over the top of your drink. Do not accept a drink from a date unless the bartender or waitstaff have delivered it straight to you. Don’t want to be rude? Take it to the restroom with you and dump it. DO NOT leave yourself or friends alone and drunk with someone you have a very bad feeling about. Tell other people where you are going. Be aware of public bathrooms in clubs and bars. Women have been attacked in the ladies room if it is deserted.

Think and practice being careful at dance clubs or other places with loud music. Sometimes it is so loud that nobody will be able to hear you cry for help.
Work on being assertive. If somebody is giving you unwanted attention, tell them to back off. There is no need to be polite when somebody is making unwanted sexual advances.

Plan that if a rapist is in your car and is sitting in the passenger seat with a weapon to you, they will tell you to go somewhere where it is more convenient and they is less likely to be witnessed. Whatever you do, don’t drive off. Drive into something that will cause your car to crash. The airbag will save you. It is better to be in a car accident than get raped and possibly killed. However don’t show your rapist that is your plan, so stay as calm as you can inside.

Understand that Vans are the #1 vehicles used in rapes. Rapists will park next to the driver’s side and, as you are trying to get in, they will pull you into the van. If there is a van on the driver’s side of your car, go in through the passenger’s door. If there are vans on both sides, go back to where you were and get someone like a security guard to walk you to your car. Don’t park any place that feels unsafe.

Practice being careful when going into your house or car because someone could easily push you in and lock the door behind you. Be aware of your surroundings; carry your keys ready in your hand and look around you before opening the door.
Keep personal information private. Don’t advertise your info verbally or on the Internet. Also, be very wary of meeting up with people that you meet on the Internet. If you must do so, bring a friend or friends.

Understand vulnerability factors: According to the CDC vulnerabilities include prior sexual abuse as a minor, being female (gender), being under the age of 18, and alcohol or drug use.

Walk with confidence. Look up as you walk and stand up straight; pretending as though you have two big panthers on either side of you as you walk may sound silly, but it can help boost confidence. Attackers are more likely to go for those who they think cannot defend themselves.

Notice and leave identifying marks. A large bite mark on their face, punctured eyeball, deeply scratched leg, ripped out piercing etc. is easily identifiable, as are memorable tattoos, etc. Go for weak spots like eyes (poke hard), nose (hard upward motion with the lower part of your open hand) genitals (grab really tightly and squeeze or punch hard) etc. to make sure the person’s hands aren’t free to punch or hold on to you and you can run for it. If you are in a place where you can’t run, notice your surroundings and leave a mark on them if you can. Rapists have been caught because their victims left identifiable teeth marks, nail marks, or DNA in the cars or rooms where they were assaulted.

Bring A DOG, if going to the park alone, beach, etc. If you have a dog with you, it’s like having another person with you. Large dogs are intimidating to predators, even if your pet isn’t exactly brave. If you don’t have a large dog, bring the small one anyway. Chances are when your little pup sees you in trouble, he’ll be more than happy to protest. Predators won’t usually attack a person with a dog large or small because dogs usually make such a racket you’re bound to draw attention, which is a no-no for predators. Who knows, your weenie dog may just surprise your attacker when he takes some ankle.

Mentally Prepare if you are taken by a rapist. You must do everything in your power to escape even if it means hurting yourself.. Sometimes the rapist will kill his/her victims to prevent himself/herself from being caught or identified. If the rapist comes in your home, throw heavy items through windows and at them. Make as much noise as you can. Do not get in the car or van with them if you can help it. Jump out of a moving car or crash the car if you are driving. Look for every opportunity to hurt them and escape. Take your extreme fear and turn it into fighting anger at your attacker. Do not be passive unless you feel you have to because a weapon is on you. Never give up without fighting a battle.

Tips

A rapist might not only be interested in SEX. The person is interested in taking control, humilating and gaining power over his victim by being violent and aggressive. Rape is not an act of LOVE.

When at home-play it safe by never letting people into your home that you do not know. If it is a handyman,cable repair,etc tell them you need to see a PHOTO ID and their truck. If you don’t TRUST them instantly, than do not let them in. If they do not look you in the eyes, have a PHOTO ID, drive a truck with the company name on it, or wear a uniform-that is suspicious behavior, do not let them in your home! Ask them to call the company while they wait outside then have the company call you or call the company yourself.

Being the victim of child sexual abuse actually doubles the likelihood of adult sexual victimization because of increased levels of PTSD (Parillo et. al., 2003), (Sarkar, N.; Sarkar, R., 2005). Ways to seek help to avoid this are listed below.
Remember that attackers usually want easy prey, so don’t cooperate! If you are sexually assaulted, yell things which make it clear everyone that the attacker’s actions are unwelcome.

Intervention such as counseling for mental health issues (like PTSD) and for possible addictions related to the abuse can help people with child sexual abuse histories overcome some of the abuse-related sequel that make them vulnerable to adult re-victimization (Parillo et. al., 2003)

Other factors influencing recovery are emotional support from friends, relations, social and community supports (Sarkar, N.; Sarkar, R., 2005).

Studies find that victims of multiple assaults have higher levels of PTSD than victims of only one assault. So if someone was assaulted twice in childhood and adolescence they would be at an increased risk of adult assault.

One study found that of the 433 sexually assaulted respondents, two-thirds reported more than one incident (Sorenson et. al., 1991)

Rape can and does strike anyone at anytime. Age, social class, ethnic group and has no bearing on the person a rapist chooses to attack. Research data clearly proves that a way a person dresses and/or acts does not influence the rapist’s choice of victims. His/her decision to rape is based on how easily he perceives his target can be intimidated. Rapists are looking for available and vulnerable targets. Statistics were obtained from various sources including the study Rape in America, 1992, National Victim Center, The Federal Bureau of Investigations and the National Crime Survey.

Your natural instinct can save your life. Pay attention to it. It is like radar and can prevent serious problems. A common reporting of women that are about to see their rapist is a quiet voice inside telling them something is very wrong. Listen and respect that voice. If there is a hint of danger about the person or surroundings, do not ignore it.

Rapists do not necessarily look like criminals or “evil”. The person could look very normal, well groomed, athletic pleasant, young, etc. They might not look evil or like a bad guy. They could be your boss, a teacher, a neighbor, boyfriend or girlfriend, or relative.

source: WikiHow

While a number of website bring steps for women, we bring tips for men, on how NOT to be a Rapist.

Few tips for men:

1. Do not think you have the right to rape a woman.

2. Learn what rape is. Rape is forcing someone to have sex with you when they do not want to.

3. Most rapes are committed by men who know the women they are raping. If the woman you are forcing to have sex with you happens to be your girlfriend, your neighbor, your cousin, your sister, or your wife, it is still RAPE.

4. When someone says no to you, that means you have no right to force yourself on them.

5. When someone pushes you away, or otherwise inclinates, verbally or with physical movement that they do not want to have sex with you, and you force yourself on them, that is rape.

6. If you see a woman in a parking lot, a woman walking alone at night, a woman in a short skirt, don’t rape her.

7. If you’re at a party, and a girl is drunk, do not think that she is your property.

8. Do something else with your misogyny than rape a woman. Try, say, reading a book. Or committing suicide to rid you from the planet so we will have one less rapist walking around.

9. Men are the people who can stop rape. For proof of this fact, look at statistics on rape for a second. It happens every minute of every day, and it is usually not ever reported so statistics on it are always underestimates. Women have been trying to prevent themselves from being raped for a few centuries. Now it is men who have to protect them.

10. Rapists destroy lives in a way that murderers do not. If you rape a person, you are as inhumane as a murderer.

11. Stay away from pornography. That should be a danger sign.

photo source: http://www.wethewomen.org/images/women-violence_18_50.jpg

You must be to comment.
  1. Pratima Mishra

    This is one of the best articles.

    Talking to a rapist will never change him. A number of girls are raped only because they have protested against eve teasing or have tried to save someone else from eve teasing. Recent cases make it clear that girls fear going to the police as they think that they are not safe in the hands of the policemen.

    There are lady police officers but none that do regular patrolling, atleast I have never seen. It should be mandatory to recruit a number of lady police officers in order to make the victim or a prospective victim feel safe in contacting the police.

    Sex education must be provided so that if not much, atleast a little change could be brought in the mindset of people.

  2. Miss Sunshine

    I guess, it's the best thing you've ever done. Not written, done. Like really.
    And I cant say anything else, cuz saying has never stopped any bloody person from raping. We, woman are NOT objects.
    Stop thinking of us as objects, and half of the rape cases will vanish. It is hideous, shamelful, and highly disgusting act.

  3. Miss Sunshine

    @Pratima
    I don’t really think that sex education or any such stuff is ever going to help. If sex education means letting them know , that woman are not objects, then maybe it might just. The only problem is the cheap mindset – that we are the weaker sex.
    I want to ask every rapist, – Who gave birth to you? A woman. Now who’s weak?

  4. Youth Ki Awaaz

    @ Apurva,

    Thanks a lot for the comment and the motivation. It is very much true that by talking one can never decrease the rate of rapes in India. I would like to add that sex education has proved to be helpful in a number of countries. It is very much true that sex education is not the only solution, but it is one of the minor solutions, so why not think big and start small.

    I agree with you that the cheap mindset plays a big role. You are true Apurva. The fact is that these things need to be imbibed in a person from a very small age. Less of pampering and more of knowledge is what the children need.

    Let's take one step at a time. I would like if all of us could suggest a few logical and possible ways by which we can help in curbing this problem. 🙂

  5. Pratima Mishra

    yes, sex education might not be that influencial. we need a system which is firm. Laws which are even more firm. This has been said often, but nothing much has ever happened. If we have regular patrolling by police, less of media interruption in cases, less of NHRC interruption in cases, faster solution for cases, more investment in action forces and lesser in making the rich, richer, maybe we could lower (if not finish) this social evil. The Home Ministry has been neglecting issues like this and has been concentrating on international issues, while we must all understand that a tree is strong only if its roots are strong. We all must be well aware and must accept it that the Home Ministry cannot and should not be expected to be next to god and provide foolproof solution to all our problems, thus, if we are the roots of this nation, we need to strengthen ourselves first.

    Another problem I have observed is that women in villages are considered objects that their husbands own, thus, their husbands have full right over them. And the fact that India's population constitutes of 65-70% rural citizens makes it all the more difficult for us to solve this problem. The people in rural India have a traditional mindset, they have firm beliefs in their traditions, which have now become obsolete. They do not want to open up their minds. Thus, if we go to villages and try to interact with them we will realize that they will listen to us but do as they feel.

    To solve this problem we would need people who are like them, who are from within them. Sensitizing sensible people from every area could help. As for the cities, we need better facilities for women, not in terms of reservations, but in terms of safety. How dare a criminal get away after ruining someones life? He has been given birth by a women.

    Why can't we go for a walk at night alone? Why do we have to be afraid of the opposite sex? WE MUST NOT. It is both the sexes together who can solve the problem. This is not a battle of sexes, this is a battle within the sexes.

  6. Miss Sunshine

    So rightly said Pratima, you covered almost everything I want to shout out from the rooftops.
    My ideology is simple: The education ministry should start some informal kinda education which sensitises the young minds of the malleable children towards NOT treating the other sex as the weaker or the 'object' gender.
    The notion should be banished altogether, i guess.
    and for the rural areas, yeah, it is saddening that husbands rape their own wives.
    Horrible, and I admire the idea of sensitising sensible people.
    If only, all this was put into action..

  7. Kriti Rathore

    i must say anshul wat a workk..i meann got to learnn so many things how to keep urself safe…bcz rapist can be enione as u said n especially rapistss n most of d times boyfrenzz even…one should be reely aware of d fact dt beingg raped becomes a sin for whole life..i dont knw y men do this..why they ruin girls lyf…whyyy….jus a msg to all men…stpp raping girls…stpp ruining dem…we too have right to live a life of respect and dignity…all girlss fightt against dis social evil…prevent drinking,do not trust ur boyfrnzz if u r in long term relationship den itzz kk….nnn more over…juss be readyy to face dis situation…u never knw who is d rapist.

  8. Youth Ki Awaaz

    Yes Kriti, you are absolutely correct. All women should come together against rape because I think that the men are just not capable enough to stand for their mothers, sisters, wives, girlfriends, etc.

    Anshul

  9. Anonymous

    Hi.Its a wonderful article.Well..talking to a rapist i dont think will ever help.The rapists must be stones or hanged to death in public as they do in Muslim countries.And the rape rate is so sos os very low there.Only such harsh punishment will help reduce the rate of such crime.Now the so called human rights activists..pls dont start yelling about the human rights of a RAPIST..just to get some media fame for urself.Rapist is not less than an animal!!And they do not have the rigth to live in a civilized society.I wonder God forbidden,if these human rights activists themselves,their daughters,or a their loved ones get raped..even in that case they would want to fight for the HUMAN RIGHTS of the RAPIST?Even in that case they would call capital punishment Barbaric? It is these Human Rights morons who'v made rapists get more confident. And they say,this will encourage the rapist to kill the victim also..well,EVEN IF HE DOESNT KILL HER..IS THE LIFE OF A RAPE VICTIM ANYWAY BETTER THAN DEATH?Speciall in the conservative sociaoethnic environments where the victim herself is concidered ..as if a filth,she's a sin,untouchable,she & her family can never be comfortable in the main stream.Her life is HELL. And what is the logic behind saying CAPITAL PUNISHMENT will encourage rapists to kill victim.Why they think otherwise rapists dont try that? Do they mean rapists dont worry about getting convicted..spending some year in jail,but being hanged? Atleast caapital punishment should be implemented for some period of time & observe the rate of rapes..whether it drops or not? And whether the rate of victims being killed increases? Why oppose something that may help preventing rapes.

  10. Anonymous

    PREVENTION IS THE BEST ACTION!!!

    One more aspect of this social evil is.. our society often tries to blame the victim itslef.The whole blame is systamatically & convinsingly shifted to the women by saying,women dress up in a way that is enticing to men. Well,all those who say this do they at least know how much % of victims were dressed in the way they call enticing. Do they know majority of rapes takes place in villages and sub urbs where women wear traditional conservative clthings,that clad them head to toe..some even follow Ghoonghat!! Do they know, SAREE…which is cocidered the most decent traditional Indian attire is the most riskiest for women & the most EASIEST TO GET RAPED IN!(Well..It may sound funny but i suggest there shoud be a stastical study of total no of repoeted & attempted rapes and % of the kind of attire worn by the victims)
    For those who say women dress up invitingly..i want to ask.. even if a women is walking in the least clothes..DOES THAT LICENSE MEN TO RAPE HER?
    Cant a women dress like she feels? cant she go out alone whnever she feels like? And for most women its a basic need to go out for work,shopping,picking-dropping kids. So when are you men going to let the women fell that this world which is the home for women too,as equally as for men, is their safe home too, when are you men out there,going to let women feel at ease.And its not only the rapists.. its all those men who sexually abuse women at their work place/public places etc. When are you going to give women a better world?

  11. Anonymous

    Although, this "SHIFTING-THE-BLAME" to victims is not the exact solution..it does have some facts.

    Though we must NOT equate rape with the attire/appearance of a women but with the ATTITUDE/CHARECTER of the rapist, however it is true that women can prevent themselves by being raped by being modest in their dressing up WHEN THEY KNOW THEY MAY HAVE TO VISIT AREAS THAT ARE UNKNOWN TO THEM OR ARE NOT SAFE. But again, rapes can take place anywhere..anytime..and by anyone…it could be at home…park..work place…by a stranger…friend….relative..and at any hour of the day. So what we need to do is…JUST DONT TAKE THINGS FOR GRANTED. We never know when one of our best colleagues can feel the urge to force himself over us??!!
    I agree with Apoorva.WE MUST NOT BE SCARED OF ANYONE.EVERY WOMEN HAS THE RIGHT TO WEAR WHATEVER SHE WANTS & WALK OUT ALONE ON THE STREET AT ANY ODD HOUR…but THE BITTER FACT IS THAT…unfortunately we still dont live in that secure world. And its ME & YOU who gotta do something to build that world. And till we do that… the only option we have is to be cautious. Because PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE!!Its just like…we all have the right to eat whatever we want,whenever,wherever..but when we know there are chances of a pandemic..we become causious & give up eating out side right? Similarly..we women have to be on our guard against this social evil. There's no point in going out in the night alone in an un safe area,get raped & then say..it was my right to go,why did he rape me!
    And it is very much possible & has been observed many times..that the rapist dint PLAN to rape..but when he saw the victim he felt the urge to do it.Now…what he saw, there could be several factors & all these factors are the factors that WOMEN CAN TAKE CARE OF.

  12. Anonymous

    1.Appearance. Men & Women do get physically attracted to each other,its a nuatural phenomenon.So if a women dressed up in an attractive manner,it may make a man feel sexual uararrousment.And if he's not a normal man who is able to identify & choose btn right & wrong,Who's charecterless,who doesnt have controle over himself..may end up raping that women.(though he may not have any criminal history)
    SO AVOIDE WEARING CLOTHES THAT EXPOSE BODY IN A WAY THAT COULD BE ATTRACTING/TEASING TO MEN.

    2.Manytimes rapes takes place just because the victim was found in a lonely secluded place.Again the rapist never planned it,but just because he happened to find a prey in a place where no one could help her..HE DID ID.

    SO AVOIDE GOING ALONE IN SECLUDED PLACES/PLACES U R NOT WELL VERSED WITH..SPECIALL IN NIGHT.
    And even if u r accompanied by someone it doesnt help much,if u encounter a GANG. Just what happened in MUMBAI on a new yr night couple of yrs ago!!!

    3.The victim looked to fragile & easy.
    Every rapist would want an easy prey.So if he found u to be too paniced & helpless, his confidence will boost up.
    IN FIRST PLACE DONT PANIC..IT WILL ONLY MAKE THIGS WORST..YOU LOOSE THE ABILITY TO THINK LOGICALLY & ACT EFFICIENTLY.
    NEVER SHOW IT EVEN IF YOU PANIC

    4.More than 50% cases the rapist is a known to victim.Most of the time its relative.I think if a person knows you & has sexual usge for you,it'll somehow or the other be expressed in his behaviour/body laguage.
    WHENEVER YOU SENSE SLIGHTEST OF SUCH FEELING..AVOIDE THAT PERSON TOTALLY. EXPRESS IT TO THEM BY YOUR BODY LANGUAGE/BEHAVIOUR THAT U HATE THIS AND YOU WILL NOT TOLERATE IT. NEVER BE ALONE WITH THAT PERSON.
    MOST IMPORTANTLY…TELL YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS ABOUT IT.DONT FEEL EMBARASSED. And no matter what realtion u share with that person..dont keep quiet..when he tries to make any advances… even if they touch/brush( which they pretend as accidental) GIVE THEM A BAD STARE.. SAY IN AN ANGRY TONE..CAN U MAINTAIN DISTANCE??

  13. Anonymous

    PREVENTION IS THE BEST ACTION!!!
    Its not about which sex is superior. Because neither men can be superior to women,nor can women be superior to men.They both are equally interdependent on each other. And w/o the other one sex cannot survive.We have to understand that.Though women give birth..they cant do so unless they meet a man.And men cannot have their offsprings unless they have women.More than men…we women have to respect our faminity.We have to stop blindly following the west in the name of fashion.We have to stop allowing the world making us a 'tradable object' or a show peace.In the name of modernization,socialization,inter national buisiness,women liberlization…all that is happening in the world to day is exploitation of women. Our Movies & television is full of sex,violance,nudity & vulgarity. Than how are we goint to teach our youth to have controle over their desires.Whatever they see on the screen..they are goingt to adopt.
    For women today…wearing less clothes is symbol of being more educated & fashionable. I dont mean to degrade womens right on this this.But why shoud we reaveal our bodies that we?Is that what they are meant for? The first step towards human civilization was,i believe when Adam & Eve…realized about their bodies..and they ran away & draped themselves with leaves. But looking at how the no of clothes on women's body are decreaing 1 bu 1,unfortunately..now after reaching the peaks of civilizations we are probably heading back to the same state from where we started
    And for those women who think wearing less clothes is their right,its being more fashinable,more modernized & more eduacated… then i think ANIMAL ARE FAR AHEAD OF US IN ALL THESE REGARDS.

  14. Anonymous

    Interestingly…once i asked many of my female friends, what would they do.IF THEY GET RAPED?

    a.Go to Police,FIR & Fight till rapist is punished, regardless of (unreasonalble& illogical)negetive social stigma for them & their family?

    b.Listen to the family & keep quiet…and SAVE THEIR NAME..AND (IRONIC)DONT COZ PROBS FOR THEIR & THEIR SISTERS MARRIAGE?

    C.Tyr to take revange in an illegal way…say by hiring goondas trying to kill that person or beat him up
    (this will 1.save u from the society,2.save embarasament u've to face during police & court enquiry.3 our legal system is more in favour of criminals than victims.so after everything u may loose)

    D. you would believe in God & that he destines everything. You'll forgive the rapist & believe its GOD who punishes everyone.And try to lead a normal life. BUT WILL U REALLY BE ABLE TO FORGIVE A PERSON WITH ALL UR HEART?
    TILL NOW IN MY CIRCLE…
    SADLY..OUT OF 13 WOMEN I'VE ASKED THIS BTN AGE 24-38, ALL EDUACTED,WORKING,FINCANCIALLY INDEPENDENT…
    Not even one chose the option A.
    12 OF THEM CHOSE B…AND 1 CHOSE D.

    I'M TALKING ABOUT WELL QUALIFIED,EDUCATED WOMEN..WHO ARE DRS & ENG & TEAHERS ETC!!!!

  15. Anonymous

    And when i asked some of my friends that
    What if one of your close sister,relative,close friend is raped…what would u suggest her? would u support her to go to police?

    Not a single person agreed.All have the same crap in their mind..In our society.. it'll become more torturoaus for the victim.. its hard to get justice…and even if u succeed in getting him punished..u cant get ur respect back.U cant fix ur families image in society.No family/man will ever acccept u. SO the common policy is BEETER KEEP QUITE ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED…TO AVOIDE WHAT MAY HAPPEN IN FUTURE!!!

    And some of them even went to the extent of sayin..A WOMEN SHOULD COMIT SUICIDE IF SHE'S RAPED…thats better for her than living a tortured life.

    I was shocked with these opinons from eduacated women living in big cities. i dont dare thinking about women in rural India!!

  16. paper

    I agree with you that the cheap mindset plays a big role. You are true Apurva. The fact is that these things need to be imbibed in a person from a very small age. Less of pampering and more of knowledge is what the children need.

    http://oopslaw.changjy.com/2009/10/30/the-rape-laws-in-india-revisiting-the-concepts/

  17. pari pandey

    the most disgusting fact about this henious crime is that victim is always criticized and accuse roam freely without any feeling of guilt.the act of eveteasing is accepted by the society as boys has all the right to do wrong or harm a women and it is fault of women who is the victim on name of provocative clothing or gestures.why we dont change our attitudeand mindset towards this crime by punishing accused.parents need to incalcate values as respect for women,and making them understand that she is not a object to be enjoyed by male.she is the equal partner of male nowhere weaker than male.anshul u ruightly said that empowerment is the only means to deal wid the crimes against women.
    please girls be assertive for ur rights.

  18. sagar jha

    I really feel disgusted whenever i see a report on T.V or read an article about women being raped or harassed. I really feel ashamed of being a citizen of this country. A sense of guilt creeps in me as i cannot help the victims of these crimes and neither i can punish those involved in such heinous acts.
    Why do we have to such animals? why?
    I say enough is enough. Indian women has suffered a lot. These articles are good but are not sufficient enough.
    Its now time to take this matter to the streets. Go out and fight for your pride and honor.
    Only solution to stop such crimes is death penalty for the accused. When and if this law is enacted, i am confident that the number of cases will be reduced to half.
    Not only rape, eve teasing should also be taken seriously. At least 3 years to 7 years of imprisonment should be enough to teach a lesson to these cowards.
    Women , its time.
    If u need any support, we are here.
    We will fight and we will win.
    JAI HIND.

  19. Creeped out

    11. Stay away from pornography.

    WTF??

    I’m a woman, I watch pornography. That doesn’t make me a rapist. How on earth is that a warning sign????? Very odd and disturbing end to a fairly ok article.

    In fact pornography is a great way to expend your sexual desire and energy. Maybe if more people watched pornography, masturbated and realized that sex is pretty normal, they would realize what a shocking violation rape is.

    Let’s normalize sex!

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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