Originally Published on : inbreakthrough | Author: Padmini
Let me introduce myself first, I am a puppeteer and a research scholar. I am in early 40s and I do puppet shows to create awareness about sexual harassment.
This happened when I was going on my two wheeler wearing a kurta with leggings, had my sunglasses on and head covered with a scarf. Six guys (around 22-30 years) on two motor bikes who were coming from the opposite direction were screaming and having fun. They waved at me with weird gestures. As I was on my way I did not pay much attention, but felt sad wondering what would be the case of teenagers and other young women if they could did that to me. They took a U turn and followed me and stopped before me. I also had to stop. One of the guys started passing comments and the others joined him and were laughing.
In the meanwhile one the guys asked me “Kyon Chalegi??”
I replied: “Tum kaho to tumhari Maa bhi chalegi”. “Bulau…”..(if you ask then your mother will also come. Should I call her?). I just stood strong and stared at them.
Quietly they left….
By then few passers-by gathered and the traffic police came over and noted their bike numbers. I came home and told this to my son who is a teenager.
A 2012 study conducted in Delhi reveals that 92 per cent of women reported having experienced some form of sexual violence in public spaces in their lifetime, and 88 per cent of women reported having experienced some form of verbal sexual harassment (including unwelcome comments of a sexual nature, whistling, leering or making obscene gestures) in their lifetime. So, one can estimate about the rest.
When I shared this with my son, he and also others, especially teenagers and youth who work as volunteers and undergo Intern-ship in our organization, were proud of me for the reason that I was assertive and strong enough to face this incidence.
I have no problem in sharing my story. You can help to take it to many women and girls across our country.