Public outcry against molestation of women on New Year’s Eve gets louder
Public outcry against molestation of women on the night of December 31 continued with a demonstration by students outside Town Hall on Wednesday. More than 200 people gathered on the steps of the hall with posters condemning violence against women. The protest ‘#IWillGoOut’ was organised by a student group ‘Night in My Shining Armour’ to reclaim public spaces for women.
The demonstration was organised at 8 pm making a point that it is not just men who can go out at night. Additional Commissioner of Police (West) Malini Krishnamurthy addressed the crowd and assured the demonstrators that the police are with them. She urged women to report incidents to the police and not be silent. Several women expressed their opinion about the incidents on December 31 and about women’s rights in general. Arpana Udupa, a resident of Kammanahalli said, “I moved to this city more than ten years ago and I think it used to be safer back then. Similar to the recent case in Kammanahalli, my neighbour was also harassed by guys on a two-wheeler.” She said the laws are in place, but it is the mindset of people that needs to change. “Men often don’t understand what the situation is like for women. We have to be on alert, constantly looking out for danger.”Men and women spoke out strongly against victim blaming. A young man wearing a dress held a poster which read “I am a guy in a dress. Will I be molested too?” The crowd shouted the slogan ‘My body, my rights’. Ramesh Jalihal, a father of two girls, was at the demonstration to extend his support. “As a father, I do worry about my daughters being out late and I used to impose restrictions about them. But I believe that mindset has to change,” he said. The group urged the crowd to take part in future events they will plan to continue the movement.