“Safety of Working Women in India and Especially in Metros”!!!
What real thoughts come to your mind when you hear this? Well, that’s impossible to predict. I don’t know who is reading this blog right now. I donno what pretty or bizarre thoughts rolling over your mind. But I am sure, by the time I uncover some of the facts & ills of a working woman in India; even in big cities; you would probably forbid her going to office. She may be your “wife”, “daughter”, “sister”; may be “friend” or “fiancée”. But remember!! these pages are not for you if you are reading to stop her steps. I would request you to immediately stop reading this and to please mind your own work. Because when you are reading further, you are actually proceeding to favor “her”- the womania and her steps of promotions to life. It was the last Friday night at 10 when, although it’s usual to reach home late, I realized something freakier and more dangerous. A woman like me who rarely meets the word “fear” in her life had seriously got panicked when in a hasty nasty manner, tried to avoid the truck-jammed highway on my routine-route and turned my scooty to get inside a narrow gully (street I mean). Well, I am a master of all those confusing gullies (streets) in daylight. But as soon as I entered in, (surely) I was in a residential area which was so mum under the shivering and coldly environ ( it’s normal, winters in Delhi make the residents close themselves in their eggshell, under the quilt, after 8); I lost all the ways. I was confused. Shall I turn left or right? Oh my god! I’m confused. Last Sunday, I was here only in any one of these streets; purchased onion from a local farmer selling it on his tractor. But today, where the hell is the right route to take me directly to my home and that too a bit earlier?
“M I really lost”!!! It’as first time ever; that too in such a familiar area!!! “Now what? Where do I go?” “Will I be the next victim?” “Will I be the next breaking news of tomorrow? Oh no!!! I won’t let that happen.” I closed my eyes for a second or two; and a kind of GPS map started roaming my mind. I donno how did I manage? I even didn’t want to take the risk of asking anyone about the right way to the main road. (I was in fear if anyone would realize that I am a woman but not a man. Unfortunately I need to make a manly get up by wearing a gent’s shirt and covering my face when I ride scooty and have to ride it like a man too; stretching legs casually, riding swingingly as the men do; so the people would definitely think that this is a boy or man under the fully covered helmet.)I found two bikers coming out of a rugged lane and even heard the roaring of some heavy vehicles. I immediately put myself into the lane and within some seconds I was on the main road amidst the traffic which I firstly avoided. After few miles, I found a flock of dancing baaraatees– the causal of traffic; but those 10-15 mins spent, waiting on the jammed road was better and quite surviving than to live with the fear of getting attacked by someone.
This is the latest phantom in Delhi today. The Rape Capital of India- where the women who are stepping out of their homes, especially for work are in constant fear of getting raped or molested. This is everyone’s story and no one is left reading this blog who may have not faced any forms of sexual or verbal abuse and fondling in her life at any point of time. But how many of us have blown the whistle? How many of us have raised their voice against it? Since ages, we are being educated to keep mum on such issues and we are well trained to keep all those secrets deep inside out hearts, feeding the courage to those nasty people to make repeated attempts of rape, molestation and sexual abuse. Well, that’s too common in India since ages and even the womanhood is accustomed of bearing this pain. But then, shall we close our eyes when we find that even the working-class women of 21st century is gradually getting the training of keeping their sense organs numb when they face such abuses at home, on the road and even at office?
Can you please answer- should we keep our mouth shut and should not to say any single word against the man who may or may not be senior to you but have always treated you as a suppressing object, as if you are simply worthless? Shouldn’t you speak a single word against him who tried fondling you or abusing you upon resistance? Can you protest such thinking that a man is the only bread-earner of the family and should be respected more; even if a woman balances both her home and office and even in a much better manner than a man?
I am sure, even if your answer is “no”, you cannot raise your voice. And if you do so, you will be stopped surprisingly by your female counterpart/friend, your colleague, mom/ mother-in-law or sister; favoring or fearing of the damn ideas of chauvinistic society; bringing you the worst examples of the impact of the male dominance in their degraded form.
This is where she stands and then she is stopped- “the working woman in India and especially in metros.”
When your day starts with juggling to reach office timely; you might be taking an auto, rickshaw, bus, metro, your own car or even a cab. Whatever may be your designation/position in the office but you are equally helpless when you are on your way to office or home. If you think metro/train is safer; you will find numerous bullying attempts among the rush. I wonder how they manage to response to their erection in public; even in a jam-packed metro compartment. Your protest is immediately being suppressed by the people advising you to go to the female coach and when you are messed up in a trouble arguing with someone; no one is there to stand for you, speak for you against it.
The recent Uber cab rape case may have devastated your idea of “calling for the cab” as the safest option to reach home when you are late. No one can forget the night of 16th December when a student is gang-raped and brutally being killed in a chartered bus. Again we thought that chartered buses are safe for us. It’s been 2 years and the status-quo result is still asking when will the rapists be hanged? Or shall the nation wait for some more years to take the court a merciful decision of releasing them?
Even if you are in your own car, you are not sure and are still in a fear of falling prey to those sexual-muggers. Fighting against all such odds; it is our daily routine to safely reach to our destination.
@Office- we face uncountable incidences of your colleagues or seniors getting jealous of your good performances, try to insult or abuse you publicly, try making you feel low among all, create miscommunication, affecting your repo in office. Your protest or argument is completely unaccepted and you are then again asked to avoid such situation so the people around you may not blame you or make you feel responsible for what you did or faced.
@Home- in some cases, when your family doesn’t understand the kind of pressure you are facing. You are in a fear of losing your job if you explain the situation in front of them and you are left with nothing but as a helpless creature- fighting for her identity and for her self-respect.
Stop relying on men– the authority figure, don’t cry for protection, fight for your empowerment. It’s time now to speak for all women and to all women. Enough of getting subjugated, enough of keeping mum every time. It’s time to make them listen, it’s time to read and understand those bad signals. Be vocal, be noisy and stand against all such odds; so what even if you are in your office. Don’t let the situation force you to leave your workplace; rather force the situation or person to leave the place. Even if you are punished like Reyhaneh Jabbari, you will die proudly to fight for your rights in self-help or self-defense and not in a fear or shame of getting molested.
Stop allowing yourself to get verbally abused. Take your power back and fight against all kinds of sexual harassment. Don’t let them think that we cannot win- we can and we will surely win.