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Our country is witnessing the worst times for women. That is how we are feeling now. But the truth is women have been continually harassed, teased, attacked, ill-treated for centuries.
We are coming to know of all the atrocities as women victims come forward and report the incidents to the law. As a result people have started talking about safety of women, laws protecting women and educating women to protect themselves against the evils prevailing around them.
This is a definitely good progress. People have realised that women are not mere commodities but human beings with emotions. The criminals of the society will realise that their one evil act will put them behind bars forever and finish their position in the society.
But what about women? What can they do to protect themselves? Of course we cannot plan our every move. However, here are some tips from my personal experience.
1. Being alert
I think the first thing a woman can do is to be alert of her surroundings when she is going out. The streets she takes to reach her destination, the particulars of the area (whether secluded or not etc), whether commute is available to that area (like autos) are important things to be thought about especially during night time. Keeping an eye around us to pick out lurking danger is a good thing. This way we will be prepared.
2. Letting others know about your whereabouts
Letting your friends and kin know about where you are heading to is a good practice. This way your friends will at least have an idea of where you could have been in case of trouble.
3. Carry a phone (fully charged)
Carrying a mobile phone with you will ensure that people can call you or you can call them if any help is required. The Sim card in the phone will also help you getting tracked by a search party when there is trouble. A dead mobile is of no use at all. Trust me, this is personal experience.
4. Carrying handy weapons
Carrying handy weapons like chilli powder, a Swiss knife etc is useful when in trouble. Use them confidentally if you feel your dignity is being attacked in anyway.
5. Going in a group
When going out for late night parties it is definitely advisable to go in a group. Remember that if we are single we cannot overpower five people at once. But if there are five people with you then you can definitely overpower the attackers. This is just being practical. Our fighting spirit needs a physical support as well to achieve what we want to do because most of the attacks are physical in nature. When the attackers are in inebriated state, they may do things which they themselves are not aware of. Most of the crimes are committed in an inebriated state.
6. Following instinct
Sometimes our instinct itself plays a big role. We are in an auto and we look at the auto driver and the way he looking at you through the mirror unsettles you. Maybe he is harmless but our instincts tell us a different story! Then we must follow our instincts. It is not being paranoid but being safe. Instinct does play a role.
I feel if we continue to fight this battle against evil around us with a determined spirit, then we can definitely bring down the crime rate against women. If every attacker thinks twice before harassing a woman then we have achieved fifty percent of success. If the laws are made more stringent and the attackers punished quickly, then the evil spirits will not dare touch a woman ever again!
People have woken up and I hope they remain awake forever to fight injustice around us.