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Eve Teasing Evils

Chapter One
Eve Teasing - A Pedagogy
The truth about eve teasing No girl has been spared from being a victim of eve teasing. This is the harsh reality in India, essentially so in any of the 4000 odd cities and towns in India. Eve teasing is a deplorable act that injects shame, fear, disgust and helplessness in the victim. Being subjected to many instances of eve teasing is an inseparable part of every girl's life causing much avoidable mental agony to her. This in turn adversely affects her family and her friends. This truth stares at the face of a girl much before she reaches adolescence. Eve teasing is a common incident, be it in buses, shopping arcades, cinema halls, shopping malls, pubs, restaurants, auto/bus-terminals, railway booking counters and every other conceivable place; but the one place where it happens with alarming frequency is on the road. Girls are never spared in the streets, the most harrowing ones in Bangalore being those near women's colleges, in shopping malls and complexes, on Brigade road, MG road and Commercial street. A lewd stare, a sly whistle, a well-timed clap, an unwarranted bump, a seemingly casual touch, a lingering look at a vulnerable time, the humming of a suggestive song, passing downright uncouth comments, cheap gestures, the display of an indecent snap or video, bikes flying close with hands stretched to grope you, passing by in slow moving cars blasting loud music with many eyes inside measuring you up... all these are typical examples of eve teasing. The ways an eve teaser can harass a woman is surely endless! School children, well-dressed executives, college kids, auto-drivers, bus-conductors, pedestrians, officials, cine-goers and aged people too have been slaved to this horrific habit. The profile of an eve teaser The average eve teaser is a crafty person, the kind who is sans close interaction with women. His having witnessed many incidents of disrespect to women at home might also have added to this perversion. He also huddles with other men and discusses women in a cheap manner. As Anu Santosh, renown Aerobics Instructor states, It has something to do with their upbringing, or some insecurity in him that he takes out by targeting girls, a tacky way of feeling macho! Eve teasing begins as an attempt to irritate a girl or catch her attention, probably by a whistle or a clap, or by drooling behind tinted windows in a car blaring songs like ?Tumse milne ko dil karta hai?, ?What is mobile number??, Aye, Kya bolti tu? Aati kya khandaala?? An eve teaser gains confidence when he notices that the girls he abuses do nothing to harm hi. Encouraged by this inaction he graduates to more active abusive ways like passing uncouth comments or attempting physical contact. He relishes watching the girls spew fiery words on him or squirm in disgust. Walking on this deplorable path he finally dons the garb of a veteran by frequently taking pervert pleasure in disrobing their dignity. When a girl confronts him directly and questions his rude behavior he either feigns indifference or walks away as if the retort did not affect him at all(though he does squirm inwardly). The eve teaser is fully aware that his act is against minimum standards of morality yet he becomes the prototype of a spineless coward when accosted or caught by others. He will feign innocence, swear on his dear life that he was far from the very thoughts of eve teasing, claim that his innocent actions have been viciously misconstrued and behave like a meek victim caught in a web of deceit; he will go to any extent to slither away. On being caught red-handed and reprimanded for their acts the most common explanation used by most eve teasers is, Please excuse me, this is the first time. He might otherwise be bold and arrogant initially, claiming

that it was not at all his fault and that others have read a little too much into his unintentional act, it is only after he is dragged to the police station and taken to task that he accepts his fault and pleads for mercy. An interesting aspect here is that an eve teaser will not reveal his address or allow the police to contact his residence. He will willingly spend time in the lock-up and pay up any amount as fine. He will do anything as long as he ensures that his family is oblivious to his act of eve teasing. A typical example being A. Rao who drove his swank car in a manner that made the rear-view mirror caress a girl walking by, his act made her disgust herself and she screamed at him. That was when I rushed and asked him if his behavior was anywhere near decent. To which he claimed that he was A police officers neighbor as if that gave him instant and understandable immunity to indulge in such acts or in the hope that he would throw a scare in people like me who accost him and question his acts. The profile of a victim of eve-teasing Simran Luthra recollects her first brush with eve teasing, ?I was barely 6 years and was returning home with my sister when I heard her scream at a stranger and she started yanking me and we ran home.? Many like Simran have experienced it at an early age, this trauma is unending, it worsens when they reach adolescence and shows no sign of abating even after they are married and with kids. As Anila Anand, the renown model coordinator rightly asserts, Unfortunately, eve teasing is faced by many girls at a tender age when they are so confused about the way they look, their physical selves and the changes happening to them that they are unsure as to how to react. The impact it had on Yogita Madhu, was something else, ?On being eve teased as a girl I was shocked at the depravity of culture in men, earlier as I was very shy I had withdrawn further and it had an extremely adverse impact on me. As Sneha, a house-maker (whose career was cut short by the increasing instance of eve teasers harassing her incessantly) concurs,To a small girl it is very traumatic, as they grow older they are at least not jolted by it even though they have no clue as to how they ought to handle themselves when they face such acts. The disturbing statement that Rizwana (yet to reach her teens) makes, shows that eve teasing has an impact on small girls too, The first time I was eve teased by a wrong touch on the roads, I was too small to even gauge it as unwarranted, I was walking back home with my elder sister when I felt somebodys hand on my back. It was only after my elder sister picked up a fight with the stranger who had touched me that I realized something wrong had happened that evening. This gave me nightmares for a long time. Girls are unsure of the very definition of eve teasing. Kaizer Karachiwala, a graduate from National Law School of India University explains, At times I see a man mouthing something within his breath that makes me feel filthy, I know by instinct that he has behaved in a base manner but dare not ask others around to take action as it is a Catch 22 situation. Anila agrees, As a victim one is not very sure if others will brush you away and insist that you are over-reacting. Sneha adds, I know that eve teasing affects a loner or an introvert to a deep extent, like any other adolescent girl I was fickle, sensitive and unsure about myself. Parents dont expect you to confront this problem at so young an age. As a child I did not know whether I was pointing a wrong in the first place or if it was not okay to discuss it with my parents. Even though they were very understanding and I could be open about anything I was hesitant, what about those girls whose parents might not be as easy to relate to as mine Who do they turn to with such issues? The gravity of this truth hits one hard. Girls are hesitant to inform their parents about an incident of eve teasing; as they know from past experience that they would be the only ones to be affected adversely. Their activities and clothes would fall under scrutiny, late nights would be curbed, wantonly by strict parents and on a sub-conscious level by parents who are supportive. With a note of caution one has to also consider this view point; Is she the victim or the victor? as queried by B. S. Gowri, (an ex-teacher) who presents the other side of the story. In a few cases, if a girl is very honest to herself she knows she is not always an innocent victim, for in some known way she has contributed to it. Though rare, there are instances of girls leading men but in the case of an eve teaser her act of attracting attention will receive an uncultured response and she too gets alarmed when things go out of hand.

Typical instances of eve teasing For a woman, a simple thing like waiting on the road for a bus is made traumatic when sick comments are made by eve teasers. While having chaat on the roadside a woman hears some snickering that makes her feel wretched about herself. In a bus people accidentally bump into them, at times even the conductor attempts to act fresh; they consciously avoid getting mauled while getting out of a cinema hall. They have to definitely be on their guard all the time when in the market or a shopping mall, ever watchful of common people taking complex routes to display their lack of culture. At times they are not conscious of the act but later they know that someone had acted funny, the way the petrol bunk assistant touched their fingers while returning the keys or the way the man in the queue brushed past them in a seeming hurry to go ahead but found time to cast a glance at them to capture their reactions. Any such avoidable contact that makes them feel defiled amounts to eve teasing. Women who are on a vehicle are easy targets; bikes chase them and they get even more hyper if an attempt is made to roll up the windows. The eve teasers say lewd things and swerve in front of them and if they try to speed away from these miscreants, the eve teasers seek thrill in ripping behind them in a hazardous manner, proving that their speed is not skill based. For those women who decide to drive faster, they follow the hapless women and honk at them but wont overtake them. At times they come very close to them and stare while speeding or say something smart; anything to get their attention. As Kaizer remarks, A walking girl is an easy target. For example, it is not uncommon for others to accidentally bump into girls all the time on Brigade road. We are very cautious while walking on the pavements there and if there is no other go, then we claw our way through and have specially devised tactics to handle the eve teasers. Our elbows are always jutting out to spike into any dubious character with a devious intention. Her sister Sabrina adds, I call walking on MGs or Brigades an Obstacle Race, girls literally run to avoid these cheapos and we get to win when we pass all the hurdles that these shmucks put up unscathed. Maya Chandra, an entrepreneur is overcome with disgust when she recollects a cat call that was directed towards a physically challenged girl sitting in a car, it aggrieved her to come to terms with the existence of such creeps in this world. Oh! What am I wearing today! Nidhi Rammanohar, an ex-student of Jain College ponders when she sees an eve teaser on the road, These guys make you conscious even while sporting a decent Salwaar Kameez, the way they get a kick out of this its dumb! We end up getting seriously jacked! Anu ties her hair up to look like a guy to avoid these creeps stalking her while she is riding on the roads, They try to talk to you and irritate you. This messes up your very frame of mind, the irritation affects you after you reach home, your mood is messed and the incident is etched for a while in your minds, even making you crabby with your own children. In a pub a woman is considered to be fair game, morality takes a back seat here as a girl entering the pub has willingly put herself in danger. As Aarti Bharghav, a mother of 9 year old Anjali states says, A woman at a pub has every right to be there, though being in a pub is not the attribute of our culture, times are changing today and I also know of many who hold wedding anniversaries in pubs. A pub is nothing but a glorified liquor shop and I, as an Indian woman have not been cultured to be at a pub and my daughter too will be requested to not make it a part of her culture later in her life. Notwithstanding what I have said above, I still defend the right of any girl to be at any place at any point of time. I agree that she had a choice to not be there at that place of obvious disrepute, but then that is not reason enough for a man to act smart with her. All these incidents do not totally scare the girl but does irritates her. Sneha, who confronted eve teasers everyday while commuting to her computer classes states, Horribly sick is what these creeps are, I feel like talking to a hardcore eve-teaser and finding out what cheap thrills he gets out of this! Defining eve teasing Kaizer Karachiwala presents the legal provisions in the Indian Penal Code, where Section 506 of Chapter 22 chalks Criminal Intimidation, Annoyance and Insult and awards a maximum of 2 years or fine or both to anyone

who uses assault or criminal force on women with an intent to outrage her modesty. A word, gesture, remark, sound, act or even an object held that is intended to insult the modesty of a woman is punished with Simple Imprisonment for a year or fine or both under Sec 354. What is to be given here is not a maximum sentence but a minimum mandatory sentence. The logic of causing a deterrent effect was well-laid in the classic case of Zafar Ahmed where a Rickshaw-wallah caught saying Aaja meri jaan! Meri gaadi mein baith jaa! to a few Muslim women was giving the maximum punishment, considering the impossibility of a high conviction rate in such cases. The logic being that when such a serious stand is taken by the authorities it will cause a deterrent effect to a greater extent. The legal provisions should not define this offence from the offenders point of view but through the eyes of the victim, the proper way of doing so would be to redefine eve teasing as any act or omission that makes any woman (an inclusive definition for a girl) feel vulnerable and violated. One day out of the blue, my wife, Yogita Madhu, after editing this entire book said to me while we were watching a program on tv, I have been eve teased so many times as a small girl. It is only after reading the book that I realized that they qualified to be eve teasing. How to handle eve teasers The victims of eve teasing find it safest to ignore the eve teasers or refrain from reacting because they are unsure about themselves and about every aspect of this social evil. Nirupama Rajendra, a sincere exponent of Kathak in Bangalore recalls the way she handled an eve teaser while in school, There was this guy who persistently followed me when I used to go to school on a cycle. One day I gathered enough courage to stop and ask him what he wanted as he was really bugging me. He asserted that he was a decent boy and that he wanted to be friends with me. I politely said that my upbringing did not permit me to open up to strangers and requested him to stop following me lest I face its consequences. He stopped following me after that. After that I faced it again in Switzerland when an Indian there said something offensive, I feel that the urge to eve tease is only in the Indian psyche.

I decided way back that if I do give birth to a daughter, I'll tell her this asserts Simran Luthra, whose is hoping that her daughter Mahek be spared of such a sick experience, Be careful of boys on the road, do not to go out alone much and be nice and bold, be indifferent to the extent possible but don't take rot from them and if it goes out of control, thulp that guy.

How does Simran react to such incidents today She answers, I scream back and abuse the eve teaser, I know that they get scared if you are bold, if we get scared they will continue. And the words of wisdom that Anu has for Devyani, her seven year old daughter are, Today she doesn't know about it but it is true that we have to face it in our day to day life. Its stupid to think she will never face it. Nothing but a complete re-evaluation of morality can stop eve teasing and this is not possible in a hurry. At the right time I'll teach her to be indifferent to it, but when it crosses the line I will insist that she should not shy away from it and I want her to face it boldly. Anuradha Raghav Simhan is sure to be by her younger sister Uttara if she faces the crisis of eve teasing, she says protectively, She is aware of a lot of things. On a comparative scale I knew nothing when I was her age and I am glad that she is so much more mature. Before it was too late, I put her on her guard. It is sad that double standards exist, women are controlled and men let loose. I feel that parents should chat with their daughters and ask them to be bold when faced by such an issue and they should also advise their sons to not ever indulge in such cheap acts. It is the responsibility of parents to educate children about these aspects of life and build them to be better humans. As Anila Anand states, It is true that the models who wear whatever they want and sport an I care two hoots attitude are seldom approached by eve teasers. They are sensitive to attacks no doubt but their bold mannerisms are a put off, the cowardly eve teaser will dare not take on them for risk of being cut down to size. Many an actresses concur that the film world is so much safer, this is because they are comfortable on the sets, the co-stars are fun people to be with and are used to being professional. They also do agree that there are certain comments floating behind ones back but it all also depends on how they conduct themselves in the unit that matters. Contrary to public opinion all guys do not take vicarious pleasure in watching woman be mauled by strangers. Shahid, a guy from a cultured family with two sisters would react thus, If I see a girl being harassed by a guy or guys Ill pretend to be someone she knows and take her to safety. Jaspreeth Luthra, a married man who shares the thread of concern for woman says in words simple and serious about how he would tackle an eve teaser, I dont mind breaking his face! The road to nowhere Do the public show concern? ?I doubt it, Anila Anand says, I really doubt if they will stick their legs out for unknown women who are victims of eve teasing attacks. Sindhu, an entrepreneur asserts, In Bangalore there is a visible lack of crowd support, I feel so safe in Bombay, there such acts do not go unnoticed. Here the eve teaser, even if caught is let off with a mild warning, no other consequence awaits him, no wonder they are bolder here. I wish that awareness about eve teasing is created in every school to make all girls and guys aware about the harm caused by eve teasing. It will go a long way in transfixing a sense of right behavior in the generations to come. Aparna Rao, whose son Anchit is sure to be a role model for boys his age, has a point here. Sneha adds, The public too have to be educated to rush to the aid of a girl who undergoes this and a more concrete step would be that of publishing photos of eve teasers in newspapers along with details of their unclean act. Stern follow-up by police would help a lot. All the women who voiced their opinions for this article concurred on one thing, How I wish I was as confident as I am today, I would have handled the eve teaser sternly and avoided feeling violated. In fact the advice that they have for all victims of eve teasing and all supporters of this cause is: Lash out against it in some way. Assert that this uncouth act will not be tolerated. Make sure that culture is shown on the roads, for the base few, teach them that they will not be let free if they disrespect women. People will support you if you show strength. Prakruthi N. Banwasi

A man's incessant fight for dignity I am of the firm belief that an eve teaser proves that he has not heeded the words of his parents who would have tried to instill a sense of culture and respect for women in him. This does not mean that a woman on the roads has to suffer torture when eve teased. Any member of the passing public can very well teach such deviant boys to be better behaved by first requesting them to desist from such acts and then taking the matter to its end if the eve teaser is rude and arrogant. The author Prakruthi N. Banwasi has waged a war against the unhealthy practice of eve teasing. He has so far reprimanded thousands of eve teasers and has further taken 500 plus cases of eve teasers to police stations. The incidence of eve teasing has greatly reduced in Jayanagar, thanks to his unending efforts in curbing the same. Many men, including his brother Pruthvi have joined him to tackle eve teasers and give them their just desserts. Prakruthi obtained a law degree from the National Law School and was a full time journalist. He runs a language institute opposite a NMKRV College, being a woman's college he first witnessed eve teasing in its enormity. Prakruthi embarks on a travelogue of how it all began and where he is heading, I was witness to many an instance of cheap behavior on the roads. It was not one instance but innumerable ones that triggered of my wish to do my bit to stop the occurrence of eve teasing. To quote these famous words: Life not lost by a mere death But deaths multitude in disarray Life lost minute by minute And day by dragging day Life is lost in many an uncaring way! I know of a girl by name Sneha who was constantly harassed by eve teasers on the roads. The Road Romeos loitering around her college tortured her daily by mouthing obscenities, whizzing past on bikes, touching her and by coming near her house late at night and screaming lascivious things near her room window. Her parents wondered why her of all the girls and restricted her further with every incident, gradually she stopped telling her parents about such incidents fearing more detriment to herself. Her college professors promised her protection within the college premises and left it at that. They all failed to fathom the gravity of the misdemeanor. The travelogue of torture from the uncouth loiterers, her inability to confide in her parents and the fear of more such incidents scarring her psyche made her stop attending college. This fair girl of 18 of sound intelligence and decent upbringing belonging to a good family who respected education chucked away her entire career and developed a fear complex, one that opens up even today when she sees a few idle youngsters on the roads. She paid a heavy price for a few moments of cheap fun for ill-mannered louts! It was then that I woke up to the gravity of this seemingly simple offence, since then I make it a point to walk up to any person who fails to show culture on the roads. Initially I request them to desist from causing annoyance to the women around. This friendly advice is taken in earnest by many an eve teaser as they all hail from good families and they stop their misbehavior, never to resort to this again and thankful that they were let go without having to face graver consequences. Yet there are instances when this friendly advice only goes to provoke the eve teaser to lash back by asking how it bothers me or by mouthing obscenities. That is when I call up the police and engage the eve teasers in a conversation till they arrive. The psyche of such audacious eve teasers is such that a stern warning from the police is the only way to set them straight and ensure that they never ever tease a girl for the rest of their lives. They should be made aware that there are enough and more decent folk who will react strongly if a woman screams for help when accosted by eve teasers.

I am happy that the instances of eve teasing, particular in Jayanagar Complex and near a few colleges here have diminished to a great extent. This only proves that concentrated efforts can take away the menace of eve teasing slowly. This can also be erased completely if the media takes up this fight and educates the public on how to tackle this social evil. I agree that every one has a pile of work to attend to, but they have to spare a few moments to take note of these aberrations in society and reprimand the eve teasers sternly, this collective public behavior will go a long way in curbing the menace of eve teasing. The only way an eve teaser can be caught is if passers by who witness him indulging in such an act react. One cannot wait for the police to be on the prowl at every street corner all the time awaiting acts of eve teasing, the sad fact is that not many eve teasers are bought to book. The police see through the seemingly innocent pleas of an eve teaser and take stern action against these shameless offenders, but that is only when the matter comes to their notice or eve teasers are brought to them by public action. Every person caught eve teasing should be dealt with in all sternness and there should not be any lenience for first time offenders. The best way to deter stubborn eve teasers who defy and question authority is to produce them before their family and unmask their true instincts. The sense of shame will ensure that they never resort to such a thing again and further this will serve as a severe warning for others who even think of indulging in it. This book has attempted to educate women to understand the truth behind eve teasing comprehensively so that they are better equipped with reactions instead of being stunned when they are eve teased. This book also seeks to initiate a drive in mature minds against this wide-spread menace. The future is waiting to be made better; all we have to do is to refuse to shut our eyes when we stand witness to an incident of eve teasing.

Eve Teasing Evils
Chapter Two Thoughts on eve teasing - Trishna Pandey

I saw this in a movie once and I remain convinced that this is the best way to go about it. I think it was “Never Been Kissed” where Drew Barrymore writes in her column (at the end of the movie) that „A writer must write what he knows and this is what I know.‟ Well, the quote is not reproduced verbatim but the effect is accurate. This is what I know about eve teasing. To me two months ago, eve teasing was a humiliation on the road to be suffered every once in a while. This „every once in a while‟ happened when I decided to wear a tight pair of jeans with a short top or God forbid, a formal short skirt. When I think about it after the Information Technology boom its not that bad. When I dress up people barely notice me in M G Road, however, I am not so lucky if I am in Nagashettyhalli, or worse, at K. R. Market. Over a period of time, I have kept my wardrobe to sensible long things with a few short tops (I couldn‟t resist them – they are so pretty) and I make it a point not to go to places like Majestic, K. R. Market and Shivajinagar if avoidable. If I do end up there I try and get out as soon as possible. I would rather pay 500 Rupees more for an item rather than suffer the discomfort that I feel when I visit these places. I have been whistled at, called names, sung songs at, groped, flashed and ogled at for 14 years now. By the way I am 24 now, yes… these things start at an very early age. These things have been happening for so long that I figured this was the way things were and I had to do all I can to protect myself, including not taking these incidents seriously or personally. Now that I think about it I wonder how being felt up in a bus is not personal. The human mind and its ability to be rational in a manner most irrational is commendable. In a way, I guess it works because I didn‟t follow the steps of many girls who think about killing themselves as a result of such incidents, and some do, that is if they are not raped and murdered by an “eve teaser.” That is not a pretty picture. The bottom line is that I dealt with it or rather avoided such situations as much as I could and didn‟t give it much thought. I am not a believer of fate or destiny or anything, so what happened next would probably be termed as a chance happening. I got involved in a project that sought to bring out a book on eve teasing. What was interesting about this project is that a man wanted to do it. More curious things have seldom happened. But in a way it seems fair that it is a man who teases and it is a man who at least wants to attempt to set this right. I was given a brief and I set about starting to start collecting matter and the journey that I have taken from the day I started to research this project to this day has left me stronger, surer of myself and not to forget… enlightened. To me, any project starts with a Google search. It‟s my information comfort zone of sorts. A Google search gave me about 30,000 hits and the links that tuned up on the first page were Indian. I realized that I had a misconceived notion that eve teasing was probably an international phenomenon. While there were several articles by journalists and women expressing the woes of eve teasing, the definition of eve teasing in an encyclopedia site caught my eye. Some of these sites were more eloquent than the others. However, this is what they said. They said that essentially “eve teasing” is a euphemism (I didn‟t know the meaning of the

word… so I went to the dictionary. Euphemism is a polite way of saying something when said in a blunt manner could be rude or unpleasant) used in India as a substitute for “sexual harassment” endured by women in the urban areas. I worked out the logic behind this and was astounded! I have been harassed at least five to six times a month for 14 yrs and didn‟t know it. Ok! So I have been harassed and revenge should be mine. I decided I was going to report anyone who harasses me, only to find out that India has tardy laws and an even more flippant manner of enforcing them. No wonder out of every 20,000 crimes committed 40 were tried in court. I would rather kick the guy‟s ass or avoid being molested than care about the judicial system in this country. If that is not sad enough I hear that women and girls are not offered enough moral and social support in this country. Somehow, this entire thing is made out to be the girl‟s fault for stepping out of the house, dressing in a certain way or walking in the wrong street. As if we haven‟t made enough compromises in our lives already! Another thing that struck me when I was going through these sites was that if “public sexual harassment” (an odious term, no wonder they chose to call it „eve teasing‟.) was local to India, it didn‟t exist in other countries. What struck me was that if I was, perhaps a US citizen my bum would in fact be private property and not otherwise. The idea that I wouldn‟t have to think twice about going to K. R Market to buy cheap vegetables was like a fairy tale dream, yet the thought that it could possibly be an option widened my horizon of thought, if not choices. While most of the articles in the newspapers bring out „eve teasing‟ as sexual harassment, some cases are related to plain bullying of women. The sexual aspect automatically creeps in because of the difference in gender. There was this incident once, when I was hanging out with a bunch of friends in Pune and one of the guys shouted out at this girl who passed by and later laughed his guts out. He was having fun, I didn‟t see anything sexual about it. As for what the girl felt, I will never know. Hell, I have teased my friends in my time as well. The line however, gets drawn when it is obvious that it is unwelcome and it hurts the other person. Sexual harassment, in India refers to any act that upsets the modesty of women while in the US it is any act that is sexual in nature including gestures, words and acts that are unwelcome. According to http://www.uml.edu/student-services/counseling/sexual_harass/ sexual harassment qualifies as an illegal form of discrimination against women in direct violation of a human right. That was interesting! I don‟t have much insight into what men think, but I have come to understand that sometimes (or maybe - lot of times) women are viewed as commodities. History stands testimony to women being treated like objects and to be owned and used. If I objectify people and treat them as such, without consideration of humanity, as an extension of my will - wouldn‟t that be in violation of their rights under the constitution? I started reading up on why things could possibly be this way. “Violence against women” and “Social problems” by Ram Ahuja identifies harassment of women (eve teasing) as one of the many problems faced by women in the country today. According to „Crime against women’ approximately 80000 cases of sexual harassment and molestation were reported in 2001 and this is supposedly going down over the years. I also read in an article that for every ten thousand incidents only one come to the notice of authorities or gets reported. Analyzing various instances of eve teasing or sexual harassment it becomes clear that abuse of all sorts, short of rape, fall within the purview of eve teasing. These include:

1.

Stares

2. Comments or remarks 3. Verbal abuse 4. Suggestive songs, lyrics typically targeted at the girl in question

5. 6. 7. 8.

An unwelcome touch, sexual in nature Physical abuse – beating Flashing which is accompanied by masturbation – or an act of exposing one‟s genitals Peeping

There are other incidents that are of concern. These include stalking, harassing, over the phone and with the advent of technology, electronically. According to descriptions provided by various sources these factors are not addressed within the purview of „eve teasing or public sexual harassment‟. Although I have had a fist hand brush with most types of harassment, the number of times I have discussed it with my peers or parents is surprisingly low. Logically it doesn‟t make sense. It is not that I was made to feel unwelcome or my support system was inadequate, it was just one of those things that I dealt with, usually by avoiding or ignoring it. I am not embarrassed about having been through what I have (there are a whole lotta freaks out there), but embarrassed that I thought that this was a reasonably healthy lifestyle and accepted it. Pulling back from a personal perspective, it is astonishing how ingrained such practices are in this society. They are seen not only in isolation but form a part of any public or political demonstration. Harassment in several cases that make it to the newspapers is associated with rape and murder. This of course might imply that other forms aren‟t “juicy” enough for the media to notice. Fascinatingly these demonstrations do not include “bad men” and “gullible women” as the players. Cops, relatives of political leaders, etc., have taken their last breath while trying to help out a woman in a tight spot, and these are the only ones that we read about. Moving on, I would like to get academic for a while. But before I do that I would like to indulge a bit about this misconception that is appended to academics. It seems to me that intellectual pursuit of knowledge is somehow perceived to be mutually exclusive from the „realities‟ that exist. I wonder where humanity would be in terms of technology if the „academic‟ value of discovering electricity was not recognized or penicillin was considered just a „discovery‟ for the intellectuals. One can spend an eternity making a distinction; I see it as an excuse to remain in the comfortable demeaning known than venturing into the possible „working‟ unknown. Studies show that acts of violence against women are ludicrously common. It is atrocious that these events are not exceptions but rules of the society that we live in. A woman living in Delhi will tell you that her trip from home to workplace is an obstacle race that would put an Olympian to shame. Eve teasing now referred to as public sexual harassment is no exception. Fired by all this I read about it a little and this is what I have come up with so far. Eve teasing is classified as a social problem, in the purview of violence against women, along with other matters of concern like poverty and an aids epidemic. A „social problem‟ is any aberration that is unacceptable by society. It has various stages ingrained in it that begins from restlessness of few intellectuals to acceptance of the public by large till it is labeled as an undesirable aspect. Institutional changes follow that ban such actions and sanction an appropriate punishment. We are past this stage, yet what we have failed to achieve is the desired effect. Public sexual harassment is as rampant as ever. This is referred to as the stage of unrest. There are various reasons that contribute to such social problems not being addressed, they include:

1.

Lack of interest or simple indifference. The attitude of „It is not my problem‟.

2. Vested Interest where somebody gains wrongfully in the process of eve teasing, or 3. Simple Lack of Knowledge. (This would include people like me.)
There are a lot of misconceptions associated with social problems like eve teasing. They are:

1.
2.

Everyone has to be in agreement on what a social problem is. They are caused by nature. Fairy Godmothers not liking us too much these days I guess.

3. It is propagated by a wicked group of people. 4. Everyone is interested in seeing the problem solved. I don‟t think a harasser would be too happy
about harass free zones, now would he?

5. If it is ignored, it will go away or solve itself. Mysterious nature has a way of healing itself… I suppose. 6. Talking about facts will solve the problem. Wow! This paper will have solved the problem by the time
this is published! (Did it?) this one.

7. Problems can be solved without institutional changes. Good thing we have the court backing us up on
There are various theories that try to understand why this happens. In the theoretical context public sexual harassment might as well be a result of:

1.
2. 3. 4. 5.

The breakdown of the value system that we carry, which is understandable considering our exposure to a rather sudden exposure to western cultures. Technological changes result in change of the material culture while belief systems remain the same. Holding on to the traditional Hindu “man is the lord‟ patriarchal belief, while the material or work culture recognizes women as equal. When new values (women are equal and free) and old values („women are only fit to be wife and mother‟ and „their chastity speaks of their character‟) are in conflict. The problem maybe because “eve teasers” are men afflicted with mental illnesses. There is a discrepancy between the „ideal‟ scenario and the „actual‟ scenario because the members of the society simply fail to live up to them.

Understanding the problem doesn‟t solve it, but it does help us imbibe the severity of the problem and its cause. It gives us an opportunity to pick a place and start off, maybe not in the external environment, but at least in our minds. One of the reasons quoted as a problem was the shift from male dominated society and the attempt to maintain it. Apparently patriarchy and male domination wasn‟t always the central theme of existence. Women ruled in the Pre-Vedic period and enjoyed a superior position in society as compared to men. Initially the establishment of patriarchy didn‟t deprive women of the social status they held, however, this deteriorated over a period of time. A little before Indian independence women were stuck in the roles of mothers and wives and their status and the acknowledgement of their existence was confined to their ability to bear a male offspring. Though independence and exposure to the cultures outside of India led to a change in ideologies and the Constitution of India has been altered to acknowledge women as equal members of society and accepted as equals in the work place, this important change is not yet recognized in some areas and in others not yet accepted from that day to this. Inadequacy felt in the power available to the masculine gender with the advent of a more global culture may be one of the causes of oppressive acts. Studies show that the media, especially movies are playing a major role in providing the input for eve teasing. Several men respond saying that if the media, advertisers, as well as cinema makers parade women sans morals, what else could their reaction be. A suggestion was made that guys, old, mature and young may not be in a position to categorize media promotion and reality and therefore have a different response to each scenario. One person aptly commented on his plight and said that it is the society‟s duty to provide a sexual outlet for frustrated men. While another said that protesting rape would make it more difficult for the woman therefore it would be wiser for her to be quiet about it. Whether it is sexual frustration coupled with media exposure, plain lust or a struggle to maintain a superior status, it is discussed academically as the breaking down of value systems. Dominance and superiority have been proven to be overrated at all levels and whatever little of it is left is being shown the door. Our constitution has made it a matter of principle that inculcates equality of men and women, yet people talk about degrees of assault, things that are tolerable and things that are not. The same law distinguishes as do

people between the severities of an action. If it is truly a matter of principle it is either acceptable or it is not. I have read tons of opinions and have adopted some in my writing above, but here are a few that I would like to exclusively mention. One said that India should legalize prostitution to provide an outlet for the Indian male. Another said that while a woman is being molested she should receive this without too much protest so that she would get out relatively unhurt. My reaction to that is… huh! My favorite one is of a woman asking Indians to drop the weirdness attached with sex and accepting it as a part of life. If it means sex education, talking about it despite the taboo programmed into us - so be it. I agree. A few celebrities including Nandita Das have commented on the derogatory effect eve teasing has on a person. Renuka Chowdhury, the Tourism Minister expressed her concern on the deteriorating effect eve teasing has on tourism in India and is positive that dealing with this problem will give a definitive boost to the country not only in terms of tourism prospects but also the respect commanded by India on a global context. To substantiate her comments all one has to do is visit travel sites and read up on India. Any reputed site will warn women regarding eve teasing. „Lonely Planet‟ would top my reference list as women who have been to India have posted their harrowing experiences in this site. While death caused by abuse to women, humiliation and rape are associated with sexual harassment, eve teasing somehow is ignored. I too agree with Prakruthi that eve teasing is the cause of these in the first place. Then why is it not figuring as a part of harassment in the judicial network in India? Opinions go far enough to state that the judicial system isn‟t effective enough and that that stringent laws are not available to curb such incidences. Exploring the big picture and playing with ideas though mentally stimulating are of little consequence if shortterm goals are not established. Advice has been given to women and girls

1.
2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

To avoid lonely places, To dress in a fairly conservative manner To avoid groups of men Be or pretend to be alert Confront followers and eve teasers Feel free to speak up and shout if necessary Carry defense weapons Avoid venturing out to a potentially harmful place or at the wrong time.

These are various strategies presented as preventive measures for girls and women. I would like to take a moment here to look at the reporting of such crimes. Although useless, in the long run it might serve a purpose. Our government, at some point in time, should start taking notice of the sheer volume of eve teasing incidents. Tying to understand why I was harassed and if I have company out there is like trying to understand why a weed grows in a garden. It doesn‟t really help the present situation but it does help in understanding what can be done in the future to avoid it. Although I don‟t hope to see any change any time soon I am glad to have taken this journey. It has taught to me to expect nothing less than the ideal, from myself and for myself.

Bibliography

1. Kumari, Rama, Women Welfare Programmes, Bookink Corporation New Delhi, 2000 2. Ahuja, Ram, Social Problems in India, Rawat publication, New Delhi and Jaipur, 1992 3. R. Muthulaxmi, Female Infanticide – Its Cause and Solutions, Discovery Publication House, New Delhi,
1997

4. Ahuja, Ram, Violence Against Women, New Delhi and Jaipur, 1998 5. Sheela Saravanan, Violence Against Women - A Literature Review, 2000

6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27.

India Country Report, Volume II, ICRA Srividya Ramasubramanian, Mary Beth Oliver, Sex Roles: A Journal of Research, April, 2003 Pratiksha Bakshi, Sexual harassment Integration of the human rights of women and gender perspective, violence against women, United nations Economic and Social Council http://encyclopedia.thefreedictionary.com/Eve%20teasing http://www.fact-index.com/e/ev/eve_teasing.html http://www.wordiq.com/definition/Eve_teasing http://www.wordwebonline.com/en/EVETEASING http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eve_teasing http://encyclozine.com/Eve_teasing http://www.indiaparenting.com/raisingchild/data/raisingchild203book.shtml http://www.manipuronline.com/Editorials/December%202002/december23_6.htm http://www-personal.umich.edu/~jlawler/aue/indian.html http://www.chowk.com/show_article.cgiaid=00001547&channel=gulberg&start=0&end=9&chapter=1 &page=1 http://www.mouthshut.com/readreview/42355-1.html http://www.mail-archive.com/goanews@goacom.com/msg00421.html http://www.madhoo.com/archives/000441.php http://foxx1.rediffblogs.com/ http://www.evesindia.com/xylane/fireandfury/eve_teasing.html www.bluejeanonline.com/features/ features_live/featuresEveTeasing042703.htm article : Eve teasing Articles In Hindu, TOI, Hindustan Times, Deccan Hearld Crime against women

Eve Teasing Evils

Chapter Three Truths about Eve Teasing
This book will achieve the success it desires if: · It helps women to not lose grip over themselves when accosted by an eve teaser. If a woman is able to assess all possible avenues open to her in tackling the issue she is sure to be better equipped to deal with the issue.

·

It enshrines the fact that eve teasing is the first step that leads to many more uncouth acts that a man can attempt opening. A man should realize that he has, by indulging in eve teasing even once, given away his prerogative to be termed as a decent human.

A woman, more often than not, is stunned when she is confronted by an eve teaser. A lot of myths that surround eve teasing have diluted the drive in women to face the issue with assured certainty about their feelings and reactions. A good number of these myths are broken down here with a hope that this would go a long way in empowering woman to better understand the situation that they are faced with and in drilling sense into men that eve teasing is not a macho thing to do but on the other extreme is the act of a coward that is better avoided. Many a women are in a state of shock and are unsure as to what to feel. It is not surprising that due to this ambiguity they even end up accusing themselves as the wrong doers and suffer pangs of guilt. Such a reaction prohibits them from dissecting such incidents with close friends and family members and bettering their understanding of how to react, by which they are trapped further. This book will, in the least, acclimatize women to the ways of an eve teaser and renew their strength to face him without having to blame themselves for his actions. How does a victim who has eve teased react to it? How can we ensure that the victim reacts to eve-teasers in the right way? Is there an optimum way for a woman to react to an eve-teaser? How does she tackle eve teasing? Can we direct the way a woman reacts to an instance of eve teasing? Can we ensure that her reaction not only makes the eve-teaser realize that his act is wrong

but further dissuades him from unleashing a string of abuses against other women later? All this, without causing herself any harm? This section deals with the myths that prevent the propagation of right thought and right action by women in our society when confronted by an instance of eve teasing. These myths also play a pivotal part in breaking down the resolve of others to tackle eve teasing with conviction. In this section an attempt is made to break down these myths and take a reality check to better evaluate eve teasing with a holistic perspective. Twenty two truths regarding eve teasing are explained here. These truths are read in co-relation to the myths that shroud eve teasing and they seek to enable the reader to compare his or her existing stand on aspects relating to eve teasing with the analysis presented here.
The truth is that an eve-teaser should be made to bear the brunt of his consequences.

The victims reaction to an eve-teaser will determine if he will be made to realize his folly and thus deterred from resorting to such cheap tactics again or only provide active encouragement to the eve teaser by showing him that the victim‟s inaction and the utter lack of resistance to his act is what he can expect in future from other women too. Myth Note : : Silence is the best way out! Any reaction encourages the eve-teasers. Only silence or a mild retort encourages eve-teasers. By ensuring that eve-teasers are faced with the very possibility of being made to suffer the consequences of their actions, every time they eve tease, can we send a severe signal to them and their ilk. Victims can make an eve-teaser sweat by raising a hue and cry immediately. Public reaction and condemnation scares the wits out of the eve-teaser.

Reality

:

Any instance of eve teasing has two aspects to it, the first being the deplorable act of eve teasing and the second and more decisive factor in terms of the reaction to it by the woman or women concerned. It is seen that many women react instinctively when accosted by an eve-teaser. This instinct may provoke her to rebuke the eve-teaser‟s acts or persuade her to silently get away from the eve-teaser. When girls report instances of eve teasing at home, they are asked to avoid any further conflict with eve-teasers and are reminded that every act of theirs would only go to encourage eve-teasers; thus they are advised to be safe than sorry.

The above norm is followed by most victims of eve teasing and has contributed to a great extent in encouraging eve-teasers to cover further ground and crystallize even rank amateurs to become hardcore deviants who will indulge in all possible offences against women, thanks to the inaction and lack of resistance they witness. There are some girls who do not react to eve teasing when faced by it, as they are shocked for a moment and caught unawares by an eve-teaser. Even though they have the courage to stand up for their dignity right then, they fail to do so as they are unsure as to how to react. CAUTION: Notwithstanding what is written above it is important to note that there might be quite a good number of situations that warrant the silent approach and avoid further harm. The above statement is made with the hope that such a silence will be broken occasionally at first and then slowly but surely become the order of the day when every eve teaser is aware that an act of eve teasing will be a sure way of invoking the wrath of society, starting with the very woman whom he has eve teased.
The truth is that most girls do not report instances of eve teasing at home.

The best thing for a girl to resort to while battling instances of eve teasing is to report the same to a responsible elder at home, be it one of her parents or her elder siblings.
Myth : Girls will bring instances of eve teasing to the notice of the parents as and when they face it, thus every instance of eve teasing is reported to her parents. Note : For this to change, parents have to stop blaming the girl who is eve teased

Reality : Victims of eve teasing are too scared to make a mention of such abuse to their family members, specially their parents, as they know that they would be at the receiving end by facing some kind of detriment.

Parents are to be constantly on their guard when it comes to protecting the girl child. They have to be on the lookout for any sign, however insignificant it may be, that will lead them to a dark incident that a girl child has experienced and is unsure as to how to react. They have to keep reassuring the girl child that she can talk to them in case of even the slightest discomfort that she might be facing. They have to provide the necessary strength and support that their daughter seeks, especially so in the age of adolescence when she is not even able to identify an instance of eve teasing and label it so. They also have to thrust upon themselves the task of ensuring that the girl child has a healthy relationship with them and that she is so very comfortable that she would approach them first to seek advice on any issue – however minor it be. The girl child should be made to realize that the parents are not fighting

with her but are fighting for her everyday, trying to genuinely look at the interests of the girl at all costs. It is true that most of the girls today would rather face the worst consequence than bring such issues to the notice of the parents as they would dissect this instance of eve teasing in a manner that is bound to cause detriment to her. The parents make statements like: “Who asked you to be there at that time of the night?” or “I told you earlier that what you were wearing was not appropriate!” and finally “Before I blame someone else, you should check how you have contributed to it and brought this upon yourself!” This sort of reaction will make the girl decide that if she ever walks up to her parents with a genuine instance of eve teasing she will first be accused of contributing to the act and it will finally culminate in a statement on the lines of „“That‟s it! Henceforth you shall not be out after 8 p.m.” or some such stringent step taken against the victim. In all this the more important task of tackling such eve-teasers is forgotten and the girl reaches a dead end where she can no longer risk revealing such acts of eve teasing to her parents. As stated earlier the best thing for a girl to resort to while battling instances of eve teasing is to report the same to a responsible elder at home, be it one of her parents or her elder siblings. CAUTION: The eve-teaser is hoping that you will suffer his misconduct in silence. He only attacks those girls who show signs of unwillingness to open up to others about such harrowing experiences. The surest way of tackling an eve-teaser or putting him on his guard is to inform your parents. If this is not possible then at least inform someone in your close family circle or friends who will be able to instill fear in the eve teaser. Getting someone to intimidate eveteasers and scare them by showing that you have enough people who are not going take such a thing lightly is a sure way of driving away the will in any eve teaser to harass you. Not reporting being eve teased to your parents or someone you trust is the surest way of landing into more trouble with eve teasers. There was this interesting case of a girl who was accosted by an eve teaser on the road every day at the very same spot. Initially the eve teaser was content just jeering at her from a distance, standing near a shop. Slowly, noticing that she was helpless against his advances, he was emboldened to the extent of walking with her for a few paces with all preparations to touch her anywhere. This girl was unable to inform her family against such recurring instances of eve teasing and she had a tough time figuring out what to do. In the mean time she avoided going to school on the pretext that she was ill. After a lot of though she decided to become bold and worked out a plan to solve this crisis without having to inform her family or bringing harm to herself. She took her father to school with her the next day on the pretext that he has to personally inform her class teacher about her illness and also ensure that her class teacher would

not deduct marks for her project submission that was to happen that day and get some extra time to submit her project. While they were both walking to school this girl was hoping that the eve teaser would be around that day too. Fortunately for her he was there as it was a Monday and he was hopeful that she would be there that day at least (after an absence of two to three days). This girl who was walking with her father, on seeing him from a distance, immediately asked her father to check the shirt that this man was wearing and suggested to her father that he too wear buy a similar shirt. Her father was unable to clearly see the shirt as the eve teaser was at a distance and he strained his eyes to see the man who was being pointed out by his daughter. To make it clear to her father she started gesturing repeatedly to the eve teaser and kept talking to him. The eve teaser, on observing the girl walk with an elderly person and also noting that she was pointing her hand towards him and talking, got the impression that she had told her father and he had come there to take him to task. He scooted away before the girl‟s father could get a clearer look at his shirt and that was the last time that she was harassed by him, even though she saw him inadvertently once in a way, at times walking by, busy with his work and at times even sulking to avoid her.
The truth is that we should not wait for the next time to take stern action.

This is one sentence that has encouraged many petty offenders to graduate to bigger offences and finally enter his name in the record of criminals.
Myth Note : : The eve-teaser will sweat when he is reprimanded thus. Why should we tolerate a depraved act even once?

Reality : An eve-teaser has acted against the norms of decency in the first instance, for which he has to be punished in a manner that will deter him and others too from pulling such a debut stunt.

The judiciary has always been lenient to first time offenders, especially so if they are not adults (under the age of 18). This is backed by sound logic*. This is not to be the case with eve-teasers who are no doubt making their criminal debut with an offense that they consider as minor. They have to be made to realize that outraging the dignity of any woman, even that isolated one time, holds serious repercussions. Society does not condone a murderer appreciating the fact that it was his first kill, similarly every time an itch to eve tease is born, that instinct has to be killed at once, lest this eve-teaser murder two things together with one act. Firstly murdering the dignity of any woman, in however small a manner and equally important, murdering the decency in him that will slowly allow him to disrespect women in greater degrees.

On spotting an eve-teaser I walk up to them and request them to desist from indulging in such a degrading act, to which they react in three ways, One way that is very much in vogue (specially with first time offenders) is that they immediately grasp the gravity of the situation and apologize quickly, wanting to scoot unscathed from the place as soon as possible. I reprimand them lightly and request them to not bring disrepute to their families by such acts and let them off. The second way they react is that they put up a show of indifference or mouth obscenities at me and question my right to get involved in the situation. When I resist this assault with authority and confidence and inform them that the same situation will be reported to the police as what they attempted will not be tolerated in civilized society, they realize that matters can get worse for them and they scoot. The third reaction which warrants the intervention by police and their families is their showing total disregard for societal norms and mouthing obscenities and assaulting those questioning them in a hardened manner. Here the only way to drive sense into them about the depravity of their act of eve teasing is by ensuring that their families come to know of their act. Many of these first time eve teasers are testing waters and are cautiously trying out their skills at such an act and are shocked by the fact that they are questioned by others who witness their act, something that they never expected. This is when they slither out of this situation with profound apologies and ensure that they are never again caught in such an awkward position.
*I recall my teachers at National Law School discuss the judgment given by Justice V. R. Krishna Iyer when asked if a juvenile delinquent was to be awarded with jail or bail for an offence. He ruled in this case that the court has to disallow the delinquent‟s (who was a first time offender) association with hardened criminals for reason of his fontal criminal deviance and it was their duty, as right thinking members of a sane society to be very cautious and ensure that the first time offender realizes that his act is an aberration from normalcy, all this without exposing him to the world of criminals. For if his aberration from normalcy was to be punished with his being exposed to the avoidable company of rogues who are contained in jail for worse offences, their influence might cause much irreparable damage to the psyche of this juvenile. In awarding such a punishment to the first time juvenile delinquent the court would have failed miserably in its duties towards safeguarding the future of this society.

Yet it is my firm belief that a first time eve teaser is not to be let go scot free unless he is made to realize the grave nature of his offence and is also made to thoroughly understand the consequences that would be evoked as a natural corollary to his uncouth act. This does not, however, mean that he has to be dragged to a police station or he has to be insulted in the presence of a group of people. It is my belief that if he is spoken to in a calm yet firm manner and sternly reprimanded for his act without the use of threatening gestures, profanity or high pitched assertions he will still fully comprehend the calamity that has been averted by the thoughtful words of the person holding him responsible for such an act and will apologize and run away from the spot, realizing that he has been shown the easy way out. He will also revere the transfixed notion that he should never, ever, again,

even think of indulging in an act of eve teasing and this by itself will go a long way in ensuring that he will desist from committing graver atrocities against women in future. CAUTION: The damage to a victim and the triumph of the eve-teaser happens in the first instance of eve teasing. The first time you are harassed your wound festers if your reaction to eve teasing is that of shame instead of castigating the offender.
The truth is that the eve-teaser is a common man.

What is the mental image that is conjured by most when they visualize an eveteaser? A thug who is shabbily dressed, with enough brawn to carry out his every threat… This picture is a far cry from the real image of an eve teaser, which is that of a coward who is trying his luck at attacking helpless woman. Myth Note Reality : : : Eve-teasers are hardened rowdies who worsen the situation if provoked. Do not let what you see in movies dictate your logic. A majority of the eve-teasers are commoners like you and me and belong to respectable families who do not disregard the dignity to be accorded to any woman (at least in public?).

Enough and more clichéd portrayals of rowdy looking eve-teasers who are waiting to retrieve their lethal chains and rusty knives awaiting the chance to square things with those who challenge them have been portrayed in movies. These depictions find a comfortable parallel to the other „realistic‟ portrayals of intensely dramatic courtroom scenes and highly charged emotional outbursts in temples, in the sense that they are all far from reality. Eve-teasers are more easily identified as the next person who you might see in the streets and not bother to size up again, for he is as inconspicuous as any other common man. Yes, he is a typical example of a common man. Be it the middle-aged fellow who might be quietly standing at the bus stop, the young lad who might bring to your mind the picture of an ordinary college kid or the elderly person who might be busy pulling out his vehicle in a parking lot. Eve teasers are rotten apples who remain hidden among the tribizillion people in society. They are the kinds who choose to ignore minimum norms of decency and still expect to be treated on par in society. CAUTION: The reason so many psychopaths get away with a string of atrocities is that they always go unnoticed in a crowd. In a similar way, eveteasers too are the prototype of a common man and they blend in so well

that you are shocked by the violating act of a person whom you least expected to make an indecent pass at you.
The truth is that the police are pro-active and take immediate action.

When it comes to eve teasing the police don the garb of true social engineers and act sternly against every instance of eve teasing. They are right in ensuring that every complaint of eve teasing is attended to in all seriousness and they lash out at all eve teasers immediately. Myth Note : : The police are least bothered about eve-teasers as they have more important things to address. The police are waiting for an instance of eve teasing to be reported to them or to be noticed by them to take stern action against such eve teasers. The police are handicapped to a great extent in checking out every instance of eve teasing, but once an instance is reported they take the sternest possible action to deter such eve-teasers for a lifetime.

Reality

:

Many instances of eve teasing are left unreported to the police. The common man has reached a point where he is unwilling to be victimized further by the police by reporting any loss that has occurred to him, be it tangible or intangible. The thoughts that prevents one from taking a case of eve teasing to the cops is that they have many more important things to address and that the victim might be better off by avoiding police intervention. The truth is a welcome deviation as most of the cases of eve teasing reported to the police are dealt with in all seriousness by them. Offenders are apprehended wherever possible and further action, viz., regular police beats at places where instances of eve teasing are noticed by the police are put up. Most policemen acknowledge that the nature of eve teasing as an offence itself is different from the many offenses that are reported to them; here the wrongful loss that cannot be quantified in objective terms caused to the psyche of the girl does provide a cause of action, but one that has to be decided after careful thought. Unlike other offences reported where the complainant himself might be at fault and holding back facts that put him in a bad light, the police are in no two minds as to the intent behind the complainant’s act.
It is impossible for the police to be able to take notice of every act of eve teasing that happens in the streets (This is where the police can be ably supported by members of the public who can aid the police catch eve teasers.) but once an act of eve teasing is brought to the notice of the police, the action taken is swift and hard hitting.

CAUTION: The police have a well-oiled mechanism that works to your favor when it comes to eve teasing. For every call or complaint that reports eve teasing, the concerned police officer first rushes policemen to the spot and these teams do their best to apprehend eve-teasers who are harassing women there. After this a frequent patrol to the place in question is launched and any anti-social elements loitering there or anyone creating public nuisance face stern warning. Then mufti police (plainclothesmen) too frequent the spot for a week or two to systematically weed out any harassment by eve-teasers.
The truth is that when accosted an eve-teaser is a coward.

Here it is important to understand the mental make-up of a typical eve-teaser. As a rule that has not shown me any exception in 500 plus cases that I have tackled, every eve-teaser who is caught in public while committing this outrageous act by even a single public-spirited individual will behave like a coward. Either he blatantly lies by denying his indulgence in this offensive act or he masks his act by asserting that his intention was never to outrage the dignity of any woman present. Myth Note Reality : : : Those who indulge in eve teasing have all the guts in the world to do something wrong so openly. An eve-teaser is like a sly fox who waits for the right time to burst out on defenseless prey. Eve-teasers are worse than cowards (definably so in the beginning stages) and their palpitations can wreck the curve of any stethoscope when confronted.

The eve teaser will not openly admit that he indulged in such a depraved act. It is pertinent to note here that an eve-teaser when apprehended will admit to having committed any crime in this world rather than admitting that he has teased a woman, for fear of earning eternal disrespect from society, his friends, and worst of all, his own family. While committing the act of eve teasing there is an attitude of proving male supremacy in the eve-teaser but once apprehended, even a first time eve teaser is ashamed that his family will come to know that he has been apprehended for eve teasing. The hardened eve-teaser is all the more scared when his family is brought into the picture as he would not have painted a far different picture in front of them. His cowardly nature will disallow him from openly admitting his vices and standing by them. Movies show eve teasers stalking woman who stand up against them and goes to the extent of depicting scenes where acid is thrown on them or eve teasers being depicted as hoodlums with little or no regard for the authorities and other safeguarding elements of society. These may be exceptions but their existence does not disprove the rule that is hidden but is nonetheless very much in existing.

The very fact that he is not directly approaching woman and gaining an acknowledgement of his emotions from them shows that an eve-teaser is a coward. It is only natural for a male to vie for the attention of woman at a certain age. This need makes him gain the friendship of women and have them to play an important part in his everyday interaction and even in the framing of his thoughts. There are instances where such healthy interactions between men and women are made impossible by the innumerable avoidable clichés that attack society. Unable to access a healthy relationship with women and have them play an important part in his everyday interaction and even in the framing of his thoughts makes him resort to the cowardly act of eve teasing. At the age of adolescence a man idolizes certain men and woman and aspires to take the best of what they stand for. He benefits from interacting with women in society and gains a certain regard for them that only grows as days passes by. Thus when a boy is curtailed from his interactions with the opposite sex his mind develops a warped logic that guides him to a state of confusion regarding what the proper behavioral mode should be while talking with women. This allows him to be influenced by peers to indulge in the so called „macho‟ act of eve teasing. All this results in his indulgence in certain unnatural acts that make him gain interaction with women in a manner that is not pleasing to the women involved and these acts are classified as eve teasing. When he lacks the guts to fulfill this natural desire to interact with women he finds such ways to open an avenue to them. CAUTION: Notwithstanding everything stated above, even though I state with great emphasis that the eve-teaser when accosted is a coward and request all to destroy the intent in an eve teaser to continue with his deplorable act, it has to be done without throwing caution to the winds, specially so when women are lashing out against it single handedly.
The truth is that eve teasing is not a mere offence.

It is not need (theft, cheating and the such) or greed (crimes of passion) or a wrongful act without intention (as in cases of criminal negligence viz., rash and negligent driving) that causes the initiation of an act of eve teasing. An eve teaser, by his act, is giving proof that he should not to be afforded respect in society. Myth Note : : Eve teasing will not be taken notice of as it is just another offence. An eve teaser would rather admit to theft or murder than own up his lack of respect for women in front of his family.

Reality

:

Eve teasing will evoke disrespect for the offender for a lifetime from his family, friends and society at large. The outrage it causes to women is not commonplaces and should not be treated so.

It has to be understood here that eve teasing is not just another offence, but it is an act that will give a character certificate for a lifetime to the offender, one that is not easily forgotten by those in contact with him. The fact that an eve teaser will not reveal his act in front of his family is more than enough to underline the fact that eve teasing is not considered to be another mere offence even by the offender himself. Eve teasing is not just another offence but a serious one that is the first step in the invalidation of the very respect that a woman holds in society. I firmly believe that the ability to imbibe the essence of art and uphold culture is what places man on a notch above the rest of nature‟s creations. The farce of social behavior can well end in a man when he refuses to acknowledge his duty and obligation of respecting women. Every man has been accorded rights, duties, privileges and obligations. Most of us are concentrating on making demands regarding our rights and we conveniently forget to honour our obligations and duties. Eve teasing is not to be taken notice of as just another offence and should be recorded shown as an aberration that the offender has resorted to, unmindful of his duties and obligations as a member of a civilized society. It is argued at police stations by friends supporting eve teasers that they have to be excused as they have committed this offence at a stage when they were coming to terms with life and reality, this attitude sends wrong signals to society at large and should not be encouraged. Eve teasers should be dealt with in a stringent manner as they are violating the sanctity that we accord to women in society.
The truth is that those who see the public trash an eve teaser support the eve teaser.

The psyche of the Indian public is to let an eve teaser go, preferably with a mild warning only. This reality might be hard for many to bear but is none the less the truth of the matter. On a subconscious level the Indian society identifies with the eve teaser and somehow gains vicarious redemption when they let an eve teaser go scot free. Myth Note Reality : : : The bystanders who witness eve teasing take the eve teaser to task. The members of the public would rather that an eve teaser is let off with a slight warning only. The members of the public are unwilling to assist those who are actively taking an eve teaser to task, at considerable risk to themselves.

If at all you take an eve teaser to task and count on gaining public support to strengthen your actions, do think again, for many members of the public openly sympathize with the eve teasers and would rather that they are let off than see them bear the brunt of this disgrace by getting beaten up or by being dragged to the police station. This is not an exception to the rule but the complete rule stated with ample experience. There have been instances initially when I have been flummoxed by the lack of assertiveness of the public in even apprehending a known eve teaser. They would rather be a part of the process that willingly forgives all the atrocities of an eve teaser. There was an instance when I was trashing an eve teaser who had put Holi colors on a lady in a manner that put her to shame. On catching up with the eve teaser after a 4 kilometer chase and after getting the eve teaser to accept his guilt, I began trashing him. By then the members of the public insisted that I let him go and even though I held on for a while, informing them that they did not know what he had done, one of the members of the public told me in no uncertain terms, “Whatever he has done, you have hit him enough, just let him go!” When I did not heed their words, they even held me back after a point of time and instigated the eve teaser to run away from there. They let me loose only after ensuring that the eve teaser was far away from my grasp. Though it is appalling that many come forward to support an eve teaser, it is possible that they refuse to acknowledge an unseen act and would rather offer their sympathies to the eve teaser and be benevolent enough to aid him make good his escape. CAUTION: Members of the public will not attack an eve teaser. It is rare that they will play a strong role in aiding those who are being eve teased. If they do aid you it would be an added advantage but if they are unsure as to what is to be done, then do take a very strong stand against the eve teaser and request for minimum support of the public, to the extent that they hold the eve teaser till the police arrive to take the matter to its natural outcome.
The truth is that for any woman, an eve-teaser is an infant rapist.

Forget being enamoured by an eve teaser and furthering a romantic liaison with an eve teaser, a victim of eve teasing will not even bother to acknowledge an eve teaser as a human being. The truth truly is that a woman abhors an eve teaser. Myth Note : : The next natural consequence of eve teasing is that the victim will be floored by your show of manliness. Any lady will not tolerate an assault on her dignity.

Reality

:

A woman hurls an eve-teaser in the lowest possible rung of people she has ever sized up.

I also advise men that eve teasing will only culminate in diluting the respect that a woman, whom they have teased, holds for them. It is wise to not go by the illogical romances shown in movies where the girl being teased by the guy falls for him - hook, line and sinker by the time the third stanza (of the eve teasing song that the crude hero sings) gets to an end! This is an unrealistic fantasy. No woman will be attracted to a boy who has little or no respect for a woman‟s dignity. A woman is only appalled when given evidence of the lack of upbringing in an eve-teaser. The eve teaser, on the other hand, is a man who takes pride in blatantly displaying his total disregard for a woman’s dignity. Thus his acts of eve teasing will, in no way, aid him to gain respect from a woman. Eve teasing is not an act that makes you a macho man, who the ladies are queuing up to swoon for. It is true that boys in the age of adolescence are subjected to peer pressure and will, in all probability, encounter instances when their peers ask them to stand up to the occasion and behave like vandals and resort to offenses like eve teasing or damaging public property. Succumbing to such influences will not constitute to be an act that shows how manly you are. It is true that you prove to be manly when you resist such wrong thoughts and condemn actions that may seem to be fit at the occasion and the company but is not what an honorable man would resort to, whatever be the pressure. CAUTION: It will prove that you are truly a man if you fail to fall prey to such bad influences and go the length to not only desist from being part of such a display of eve teasing but also aid these misled youths to get back on the right track! Any woman is being given a reasonable ground to think that this man who is capable of eve teasing is just showing the tip of his moral iceberg and worse things are definitely in store for those eves who would bother to even associate with him.
The truth is that society should encourage interpersonal relationships between the two sexes to avoid aberrations in perception.

When society shows man the numerous relationships that women have with him and encourages him to accord due respect to her in all walks of life then the chances of his seeing a woman as a mother, sister and daughter are enhanced and he is more likely to walk up to her with dignity. Myth : The solution lies in limiting or regulating interaction of men with women in public places.

Note Reality

: :

An eve-teaser aspires for interaction with women but is unable to access this in a healthy manner. Encouraging males to develop healthy relationships with women implants respect for women in their minds.

The faster we realize the need for a harmonious interpersonal relationship between men and women of this world (be they in any sect, creed or in any rung of the economic ladder), the easier it will be to remove the influence of the so called „necessary evils‟ that are seen in abundance in society. There are times when social scientists too have been flummoxed by the apathy in their objective analysis of oppression and suppression of women. It is not that they do not feel for it on a personal level but the fact is that they know it to be such a big chuck of existing reality that they are more interested in weeding it out than in pausing to weep over it. They understand the need for women to be placed on par with man on an economic, psychological and sociological level to lessen the load of sufferings thrust on her by her male counterparts. It is pertinent to note that some sections of the younger generations are emerging out of the shackles prescribed by society and are able to react to women with a care and concern that escaped many others. This again is attributed by social thinkers to be a direct outcome of the interpersonal bonding that happens between a man and a woman in the many possible relationships that enforce in him an inbuilt and involuntary thought for her betterment and safety. Man evolves as a respectable member of society only when he fully fathoms the need to respect women at all times. This respect can be cultivated at an early age and will only gain strength with the passage of time. All that has to be done is to allow for a man to indulge in role play with women and fit the bill of a son, brother, nephew, cousin, friend, colleague, etc. No man is an island and it takes a woman to bridge any gap that may have occurred during his interaction with society. It is true that men who eve tease are known to have a history of non-interaction with women on a primary level and they hold in them an innocent urge to gain proximity with women in all spheres of their lives. This instinct is wrongly channelized to acts of eve teasing when society does not make required provisions to encourage a structured relationship between them and women.
An eve teaser will admit to anything in front of his family members other than having outraged the dignity of a woman.

When faced with the degrading prospect of having their family members find out about their atrocious act against a girl, they will cringe and plead, for they would rather that they be accused of murder than stand accused in front of their family as an eve teaser.

Myth Note Reality

: : :

An eve teaser is not scared of the consequences of his act and fear is not the key here. An eve teaser respects every woman in his family and will not face any lady in his family when accused of eve teasing. An eve teaser will cringe if his misdeed is brought to notice of his family members, especially so if he is a hardened eve teaser.

Every person who is living in this society has to adhere to a certain set of codes. Each one is made to imbibe that aspect of culture which commands respect for woman, whichever be the economic strata of society he belongs to. In the many years that has made me walk up to thousands of eve teasers and request them to desist from their act, I notice that a majority realize the depravity of their acts and they immediately scoot from the very place, lest they be recognized by anyone. Their first thought is to avoid being spotted by even a mere acquaintance, forget being seen by a family member. The rest who are of the hardened kinds initially put up a brave front and question any authority that confronts them, in some time when their guilt is made clear, they resign in a rush and request for lenient handling by the police. They make it clear that they would rather pay any amount in fine or even spend a night or two in the police station than bring their families there and make them aware of their having indulged in eve teasing. I am yet to come across any eve teaser, who would really not care if his family was brought into the picture and informed about his indulgence in eve teasing. Thus the best punishment that will have a lifetime‟s effect on an eve teaser (especially so in the light of his being a hardened eve teaser) is to bring his act to the notice of his family. I had to resort to this act in an approximation of one in twenty cases of eve teasing with the aid of the police (and the same has to be undertaken after a lot of thought as this will effect the image that a person has in front of his whole family and the consequences that follow will have to be borne by him for a lifetime). I have sought to reassert to myself that this act, used as the last resort, in extreme cases have two justifications.
· Firstly the truth that nothing else would make this person even remotely feel that what he did was wrong. The hardened eve teaser would only think that everyone made a mountain out of a mole hill of his „mischievous‟ act and he was the victim and not the victor here as in committing eve teasing as he had to bear a punishment that went far beyond the act that he indulged in, thus he would continue to eve tease. Secondly it is only when the family castigates him by feeling shamed by his act and shows their extreme displeasure at his having eve teased that he will realize the importance his family attaches to non indulgence in eve teasing and will dare not behave in a similar manner ever.

·

This in turn will make him stop eve teasing even if he is not sure about the involvement of guilt from his end. The truth is that there may be an eve-teaser in your family.

Having understood that an eve teaser is a common man who might be anyone in our midst let us move a step further and accept that we might have an eve teaser in our very family too. Myth Note Reality : : : I do not have to be on the look out for any eve teaser in my family. Every family has to discourage any disrespect to woman in their own stern and sure way. Every family has real people in them who have real emotions and are susceptible to baser instincts too.

The moving force in this world is not a leader who impresses the masses but the common man of this mass of humanity who takes it upon himself to give direction to his life and thus also affects the course that many factors and people dependent on his decision take. Any social phenomenon may assume incurable dimension or be solved in a jiffy by the conscious decision of the common man. The common man is the person who breathes in every home in this world. He is your family member, he is you. To rid this world of any garbage all that one has to do is to ensure that his home and his road is clean and if not, then the solution does not lie in pondering over what the right course of action should be but in the actual cleansing of such garbage by physically taking the broom and taking the garbage and throwing it away in an appropriate place. Assuming that every person in this world is educated to do so, the logic in doing so will awaken a reality that will keep your home, your road, your community, your city, your country, your continent and thus your complete world garbage free. Garbage here includes the kind that exists in people’s minds too. Let us not look at the possibility of an eve teaser being bred in our family as a problem but more as a preventive opportunity to rid this world of the mental garbage that our home has and cleanse the same. When every home conditions itself to such thought and rids itself of eve teasers, then it is a pragmatic certainty that our world will be free of eve teasers and any other garbage. This simple approach assumes the availability of a collective conscience that again is dependent on every single person who contributes his unshakable and moral based conscience to this community.
The truth is that aged people can also be eve-teasers.

Age is not a factor that commands respect always. This unfortunate truth stares at us in our face every once in a way and strikes a chord of disharmony to the very roots of our value base, specially so in the Indian context which has forever taught us to pay our unquestioned respects to those who are elder to us. Myth Note Reality : : : Aged people are not potential eve teasers. With the passage of time one does not always change for the better. Some aged people act like the proverbial rotten apple that brings discredit to the whole bunch.

A famous actress and singer who is basking in international recognition once caught an elderly gentleman in the audience who was old enough to be her granddad cast lewd glances at her while she was performing in a show. Her reaction was immediate and stern, in between the performance she threw all caution to the winds and pointing a finger at this man and signaled that he better be careful. This simple act of hers was enough to make this man sweat it out. The whole crowd was aware that this man had invited her wrath by some indecent act that was not fitting the occasion and those standing near the man were quick to express their discomfort, this made the man slither away from the place and thank his lucky stars that he was let of with a slight warning. In my years of taking eve teasers to task I have realized that it is easier to tackle hot blooded youth who make visible their attempts at eve teasing and face the consequence for it than the cold calculated ways in which an elderly gentlemen eve teasers makes it next to impossible to even assertively point a finger at him as his acts are always bordering on decency and therefore hard to pinpoint.
Elders always take refuge in acts on the lines of a lewd stare, an unwarranted bump, a seemingly casual touch, a lingering look at a vulnerable time and usually avoid other blatant acts of eve teasing like a sly whistle, a well-timed clap, the humming of a suggestive song, passing downright uncouth comments, cheap gestures, showing an indecent snap or video, etc. This makes it difficult for most to gauge the intention of the elderly person indulging in such an act but not impossible. As goodness of the heart cannot be hidden in the long run, so is it impossible for anyone to conceal malicious intent all the time. The truth is that eve teasing does not occur only in desolate roads.

Gone are the days when certain places could be safely excluded from instances of eve teasing, be they premises that promote education, hospitals or even places of worship. Now the eve teaser strikes with apathy in all those places which had an added sanctity to it. Myth : Eve teasing only occurs on the roads.

Note Reality

: :

Instances of eve teasing on the roads account for a good percentage of eve teasing. Eve teasing happens in every possible available place.

The inability to perceive myself to be on the same platter with men who eve tease in hospitals, schools or even temples is not something that I am suffering from alone. A good chunk of men refuse to be a part of that society that has people who will not desist from giving into banal instincts even in places where it is not at all expected. Roads are definitely places where woman feel more vulnerable in the face of public attention than anywhere else. It is here that she has had innumerable encounters with all kinds of eve teasers. It is here that she felt many humiliations and began to feel apologetic for her very existence, yet the travelogue of travails with eve teasers is not limited to these roads only. Name a place where she is saved the trouble of having to watch out for eve teasers now. Women have learnt to be on their guard while conducting themselves in shopping malls, the many outlets and cinema halls therein and every other conceivable place. „Ramrajya‟ is equated to be a utopian condition where the entire society basks in amity according to Indian mythology. To describe this learned men have depicted a condition where a beautiful woman, bedecked in ornaments, walks in the middle of the night on a desolate road without fear. The analogy indirectly underlines the fact that if a woman is safe on the roads in the dead of the night with valuables on her, then she need not nurture fear in any place that she finds herself in. Taking this as a barometer to assess the present standards we fall short in comparison, for even now a woman cannot move around without fear or assured support. Such being the case she has to be a step ahead of her eve teaser in this obstacle race of life to be able to escape his harassment.
The truth is that an eve-teaser will not attack any woman he chances upon.

Eve teasers might be sly but they are not fools, in fact they are a tad bit too clever, as is the case with many who go against the norms of society. The eve teaser too knows that if he accosts any woman who is confident about herself there is a possibility that she might lash out against him or create a racket, thus placing him in public scrutiny. To avoid this he selects his victim, mostly by gauging her lack of confidence. Myth Note : : An eve teaser will indiscriminately pounce upon any woman he spots. Eve teasers too are weary of being caught and are on the lookout for danger signs.

Reality

:

An eve teaser will only harass those who show him an inkling of insecurity in most of the cases.

Women should be bold and confident or at least appear to be so when out in public, this is bound to make any potential eve teaser think twice before he attempts to pull a stunt. Show him a sign of insecurity and he will be the first to pounce on you, without a thought about the consequences, for he is well aware that any woman who has a visible lack of confidence will not be spunky enough to report the matter to anyone or even lash out against him. An eve teaser knows that most of the women who walk on the roads are unwilling to take matters too far, how else does he account for the innumerable successful eve teasing episodes that his friends have bragged about. An eve teaser is assured by his friends that they have indulged in the same act many times over and the unwritten law is that they address those women who do not display confidence as they go by their lives as they are not capable of lashing out at them. The truth is that most eve teasers are put off when they see women who are confident as they know that the risk of being dragged to public gaze is higher. It is hoped that after reading this book women will be more confident (even in a non-confrontational way) when they are accosted by eve teasers and the very show of confidence will go a long way in putting off any attempts of eve teasers of harassing them and thus eve teasers too will find lesser opportunities in displaying their unwanted urges.
The truth is that educated people can also be eve-teasers.

It is not lack of education but the inability to apply the values bred in them by academic orientation that leads men to indulge in eve teasing. Education has failed to a great extent in inculcating ethics, morals and the „ought‟ factor that cautions man to consciously behave better. Myth Note Reality : : : Educated people do not indulge in eve teasing. Education today merely shows one the right way but does enforce one to walk righteously. Educated people are equally responsible for indulging in eve teasing.

No longer can we safely blame the uneducated masses for a majority of the social evils and the socio-economic offences that are threatening to throttle the very breath of harmonious life in today‟s world. In reality educated people are equally responsible for the propagation and perpetuation of social evils. They use their education to take undue advantage of the law and further to vociferously put across their justifications.

Any policeman will vouch for the fact that a majority of the traffic rules are flouted not by the uneducated people but the educated ones who throw caution to the winds and break the law and then argue with the authorities when caught red handed. The illiterate masses would rather not fall foul of the law and cough up fines. Here the educated man has three things that work in his favor; firstly he can get to escape by stating that his act did not amount to harmful eve teasing. According to him, he was well within limits of decency and too much has been read into an innocent act. He can use his education to argue for a prescription of the benefit of doubt to his act. Secondly he will resort to some kind of influence or even indulge in bribing the authorities to escape the logical punishment that would follow his dastardly act. Thirdly he will blatantly lie and claim that he has been falsely implicated and that he was not at all involved in any act of eve teasing. These escape routes are also known to the uneducated but the handicap of not being able to vociferously advocate these might make them choose the available option of pleading guilty and placing themselves at the mercy of those who take them to task.
The truth is that eve-teasers do not target only those women who lead them on.

For an eve teaser every woman is a potential victim and he does not search around and wait until a woman who seems to welcome such advances appears on the scene. It is possible that an eve teaser may find it convenient to focus on those women who are meek and are walking with their gaze fixed to the ground. Myth Note : : Eve teasers target only those women who lead them on. Eve teasers may take note of the confidence or the lack of it that a woman shows in deciding if she is a safe victim, not her reaction to it. Eve teasers accost any woman when they are confident that they will suffer no detriment with total disregard to the response of the said woman.

Reality

:

Eve teasers might not behave like compulsive maniacs when they see women but they will surely not let a chance pass by without accosting women when they are certain that they will go scot free with such an aberration. An eve teaser has been convinced that his act will prove irresistible to women. This is because he goes by the popular notion that the woman who is eve teased and provoked ends up falling in love with the „macho man‟ who has eve teased her, a misconception that is so well woven in regional movies.

Thus he is not looking for any signs welcoming his advances, as he plays the game according to the rules so well laid out, it is for him to make the first move and this only means that he can target any unsuspecting victim who might not even know about his existence. Words or gestures are not needed to encourage the eve teaser initiative to abuse women. He just has to sum up a girl and label her as one who will not be able to lash out against him and that would sum up all the qualifications that he is looking for in a woman to make her his immediate target. This truth has to be understood in its entirety by all the parents and guardians of girls who somehow sow the suspicion that the girl played an active part in the whole incident. At times the moment a girl reports a case of eve teasing to her family; it is a fact that the family members accuse her of contributing to the act by a little more then her mere presence at an unguarded place. An inkling of such a notion is all that is needed to create a bias and make the girl suffer for her act of reporting an incident of eve teasing that she was made an unwilling part of.
The truth is that the eve-teaser waits for the right time to burst out on defenseless prey.

This is another reassertion of the fact that the eve teaser is a coward. He will not ignore the moral depravity of his act but is cautious enough to be up to his wily ways only when it safe for him to do so. He will not be up to his tricks when there is a chance that he might be taken to task. Myth Note : : Eve teasers are macho men who accost anyone in random. Eve teasers are very selective about their prey. They would rather stand in silence when women move around due to bad timing than fall prey to their own wrongdoings. Eve teasers are cowards by nature and are experts in selecting the right time to target defenseless and meek woman who (in all probability) will not react in an assertive manner against their misdeeds.

Reality

:

An eve teaser is definitely not a brave man. For if he was anything near being brave he would have found other civilized ways of reaching out and bonding with women. He knows fully well that eve teasing is not the right mode to get in touch with woman, so he waits for the right moment to burst out on them when they are defenseless. He is seeking gratification for himself by reaching out to women in a crude manner. Here he is further cautious as he knows that his act is not welcomed by civilized society and so he has to be clever enough to escape attention and emerge unscathed after harassing women.

When an eve teaser accosts helpless women he underlines his inability to inflict harm on those stronger than him. Cowards have to plan their way well so as to ensure that they are not caught. Being a coward an eve teaser too acts in a similar fashion by scheming and getting what he wants without causing any detriment to his own self.
The truth is that eve teasing is not a macho thing to do.

The definition of a macho man is one who does not think twice before using his might to do the right thing, not one who wrecks havoc on those who are gagged by circumstances and are unable to stand up to their rights. Myth Note Reality : : : You are macho if you eve tease. Any woman aspires to be accorded with respect. Women loathe those who are unable to afford dignity to the very women that men are born to.

When was the last time you praised the manly qualities of any man who used his available might to wreck havoc on a woman who is expending all her energies to strive for an identity and earn her wings. The only way to answer this query is by reminding ourselves that we, as civilized humans, are never admired for our cruelty towards any living being in society. The truth is that a man wishing to proclaim his manly qualities by eve teasing is walking far away from his goals. To prove your manliness, unlike the popular misconception, one does not merely have to inhale cancer sticks, speed on bikes and cars without skill, consume alcohol or treat women with disrespect. A show of physical strength or an ability to indulge in mental gymnastics to achieve the outcome of gaining more money or power is something that is within the reach of all the weaklings of this world. Contrary to popular notions these attributes are really no barometer to measure how „macho‟ one really is. To be a macho man one has to work much harder. Even if the temptation and the opportunity to tease a woman comes his way he has to prove his macho qualities by restraining himself from taking the easy way out. The truth is that his refusal to give in to pressure from his peers and disallowing them to treat him like a boy and make him an eve teaser is what will make a man out of him.
The truth is that eve teasing is also faced by small children.

It is astounding to note that eve teasing is no longer a phenomenon faced by college kids or working women only. It begins much earlier nowadays, an act of eve teasing may be imprinted in the mind of a mere child who is 5-6 years old. This act is registered in her mind and instills fear on recall.

Myth Note Reality

: : :

Eve teasing is faced by girls in college or when they near the age of adolescence. Many women recall instances that can be termed as eve teasing at a very tender age. A high percentage of women accept that they have witnessed instances that can be classified as eve teasing from the age of 5-6 onwards.

When I asked many women as to when was it that they noticed eve teasing first, they were all pointing to a time in their childhood when they felt uneasy or perturbed by an act that they were unable to place. It was only much later that they gave it a negative connotation. Though it is a welcome relief that the management in many Kindergarten and Montessori schools have taken it upon themselves to educate the parents or guardians to discriminate against a good touch and a bad touch and further sensitize them to the unspoken signals that a child gives out by showing a degree of discomfort with someone. It is hearty to note that such efforts are being made to educate parents and disallow any child from suffering the ill-effects of eve teasing; somewhere in the corner of our minds we are also saddened by the fact that these things have to be dealt with at such a tender age.
The truth is that the best solution to tackle eve teasing lies in creating awareness

Awareness is the best remedy for a multitude of issues. I am well aware that when I am tackling an eve teaser and taking him to task I am merely addressing the actualization of his uncouth thoughts. Trashing an eve teaser is not a preventive act but an act that merely seeks to set right a wrong perpetuated by him. Crisis management is not the relief afforded in times of crisis but managing a crisis beforehand too. Myth Note Reality : : : Eve teasing can be tackled by effectively accosting eve teasers. Awareness is a universal solution to most problems. The social evil of eve teasing has to be wiped out systematically and from its very roots.

A holistic approach will go a long way in curbing the social evil of eve teasing. Acts in isolation create significant ripples but to weed out eve teasing in totality we have to initiate strong waves of awareness in society regarding all aspects of eve teasing. By doing so one is attacking the issue from all angles and thus hopes for the eradication of the same are very high. A holistic approach will ensure that people are deterred from becoming eve teasers by

creating awareness among boys and establishing a mindset in them that will disallow them from becoming eve teasers. People should start looking out for careers instead of merely seeking jobs, they should try and gain an education instead of trying to channelize all their efforts to obtaining degrees, they should apply the values taught to them instead of preaching about the absence of these values in others and they should foremost apply the right thoughts that have been instilled in them and show culture and stand up against the base act of eve teasing. This is how they can create awareness in others that eve teasing will not be tolerated and also drive home the message to other civilized members of society that eve teasing should not be tolerated. Awareness among the public about the damage caused by eve teasers and the depraved nature of their indulgence will only strengthen their resolve to stand up against eve teasing, especially so if they are educated on all aspects regarding eve teasing. A lady too has to realize that her fighting back against eve teasing will hold the following benefits for her:
· Firstly it will go a long way in reducing the shame and guilt that she piles on herself when eve teased. Secondly it will act as a great deterrent by sending shivers down the spine of every eve teaser and all his friends and further caution them against indulging in such acts. Thirdly it will encourage other women to also stand up for their dignity when faced by a similar instance of eve teasing.

·

·

If such awareness is geared up then eve teasers too will be wary of possible attacks by the public or by the woman herself and will decide to be safe than sorry and curb their urge to eve tease. Awareness will also aid in establishing right from an early age that: * * Boys can be mischievous but cannot disrespect women at any time. Girls learn from an early age to raise their voice against eve teasing.

In all it can safely be said that a long term plan to eradicate eve teasing should have a holistic approach and the best way to tackle eve teasing from all corners is to spread awareness about this social evil to such an extent that people are compelled to repel it through and through.
The truth is that woman of this era are not empowered per se to fight back against eve teasers.

Empowerment of woman is a phrase that I have carefully avoided in this entire book, the reason for this is that it is a fallacy to assume hat women in India are liberated and empowered. This might be true in a decimal level in urban areas as against the multitude of women who are still bound firmly to the ramshackle of societal suppression, more so in rural areas.

Myth Note

: :

Modern woman are not automatically packaged to stand their ground against eve teasers. Empowerment of women is yet to be achieved in a manner that will scare the wits out of anyone who wishes to ill-treat them or take undue advantage of them. Women of today are still facing enough discrimination from womb to tomb that disallows them from growing into complete and confident human beings.

Reality

:

Liberation in the true sense underlines the ability of a woman to take complete respect for every act of hers and decide to do something. True liberation is earned by a woman only when she takes decisions without bothering about any external factor. In India‟s metropolitan cities there is a possibility that a woman can proclaim that she is liberated after a certain point of time but to a greater extent such liberation is still eluding the feminine majority in India. To liberate woman in the true sense one should show women their strength instead of purporting to support them. It is not enough if a certain aspect of a woman‟s life is left to her discretion. Using this as a prime example one cannot shout from the roof tops that this woman is liberated as she has decided some aspect of her life without bothering about another‟s reaction. Liberation of women in any sense is akin to an exception that is being lobbied to prove itself as a rule. Empowerment of women is not a consequence that is required to be achieved with some effort. It should be inherent to the very breath of existence of women. Undiluted respect to women in one‟s family should be inculcated by everyone in Indian society. The not so subtle hints of male domination and instances of abject subjugation of woman within the family breed the notion of tolerance to any atrocity committed on women. It is unfortunate that such an anomaly coexists in our society.
Though women are given due respect as life givers, their vulnerable position in the societal structure makes them an easy target for men. Their empowerment is a sure way of making others think many times before trying to make them easy targets.

Eve Teasing Evils
Chapter Four
Need for attitudinal change – Dr. Ali Khwaja
Dr. Ali Khwaja underlines the fact that prevention is better than cure even in the widespread social disease of eve teasing. Eve teasing is not as old as Eve (because there was no other man around at that time except her beloved Adam), but it has certainly existed down the centuries. Most civilized societies have taken cognizance of it and have tried to curtail it in different ways. Unfortunately the focus is more on the ways and means of taking action against it, punishing the offenders or informing girls as to how to defend themselves. Very little attention has been given to going into the root cause of eve teasing and what can be done to bring about a transformation in society so that the practice and incidents are prevented. It is absolutely clear that the victim is in no way responsible for the incidence of eve teasing. It does not depend on how the girl looks, what she wears, or where she goes. In fact, it is often the quieter, more subdued and simpler girls who get attacked because the culprit is more confident of handling and cowing down such girls rather than the assertive and mod ones, who may retaliate strongly. So, it is obvious that the change has to be brought in the thinking pattern of the men and boys who succumb to the temptation of indulging in such behavior. If the thinking pattern is changed, incidences will reduce by themselves. This problem starts with the way boys are indoctrinated to develop an attitude towards girls. At a very early age, they are taught things like „Don‟t cry like a girl‟, or „You should not go near girls.‟ To the young adolescent mind, a girl is an object of weakness and vulnerability and at the same time, due to his hormones playing up, an object of fascination that is forbidden to him. Not allowing boys to get a greater understanding of the female gender, lack of sex education and harsh punishments for harmless pranks develop in many adolescent boys a feeling of suppressed anger and resentment towards girls. Compounded to that is the mistaken version that every boy has to be a „macho‟ man and a girl is a conquest to prove his manhood. When such boys do not get attention from girls, they develop the tendency to tease them; initially from a distance, and then as they grow bolder, getting closer and closer to them. If this was only an adolescent passing phase, it would not be a serious societal concern. As we are well aware, eve teasing is indulged in by men who are well past their adolescence, sometimes even by doddering old men. Hence we need to understand that the „programming‟ of the mind that takes place in early years, continues to affect behavior for a lifetime. Here are some practical tips to influence the mindset of potential eve teasers by giving the right inputs to growing young men and bringing about an attitudinal change in them:

o o o o o o o

Media should stop glorifying „macho‟ men who make a public display of affection towards unwilling girls. Boys and girls in families should be treated equally and boys should be taught that their sisters have the same rights as they do. Girls should be allowed to participate in outdoor games more freely, thus dispelling the myth that they are the „weaker sex.‟ School curriculum should include gender related studies that highlight the achievements of women and their capabilities. Sex education should include understanding the emotions, needs and behavior of the opposite gender. The concept of „boys will be boys‟ should be curbed right at the beginning. Small pranks against girls (or even in general) that are tolerated since they appear to be harmless lay the seeds for much more unacceptable behavior in later years. Bystanders should not remain mute witnesses whenever any incident of eve-teasing takes place, because such inactivity not only encourages the abuser but also gives wrong signals to prospective abusers.

o o o o

„Gentlemanly‟ behavior should be encouraged and rewarded, particularly among adolescent boys and they should be projected as role models. Family bonds should be strengthened since adolescent boys have a tendency to move away from the ladies in their house and interact only with their peers, thus being deprived of female interactions and the opportunity to learn to treat women with due respect. Consumption of liquor at an early age should be strongly frowned upon. Unfortunately the pub culture has made intoxication fashionable and drunkenness leads to many incidents of misbehavior with women. Men misbehaving with their own wives are unfortunately ignored by outsiders as it is considered to be their „internal‟ matter. Men who get into the habit of dominating and being aggressive with their wives feel that they can misbehave with other women too.

Simultaneously, girls should be taught at an early age that they are in no way inferior to boys. While girls of today are getting as good an education as their brothers, they are not being taught life-skills and often end up with low self-esteem that prevents them from even protesting or defending themselves and eve teasers have a free hand.

Eve Teasing Evils
Incidents of Eve Teasing The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing -Edmund Burke

Chapter Five

The Beginning
It all began when I was witness to 300 to 400 cars whizzing past college going girls every day from about 9 in the morning to around 5:30 in the evening. As I was residing near NMKRV college which exclusively educated women at Jayanagar IIIrd Block, it was astounding to note that there were enough young men with ample time to squander on probable chances of scoring with girls by adapting the flashiest possible behavior, notwithstanding the fact that they were uncouth, rude and loud. These boys did take the mutilated messages in C grade movies seriously. “I will give you the room on one condition!” This was what Vishalakshi Aunty, a potential landlady said to two bachelors, my brother and I, who stood in front of her, eager to get decent accommodation for ourselves. She said that she would be willing to let the room out to us as tenants only if we promised not to stand near the gate and look at the girls from NMKRV Girls College who used to frequent the road. I remember having assured her that we were not fortunate enough to hold so much time on our hands to do so, while shuttling between work and college. Why did Visalakshi aunty even bother to make that point, do people really find time and have an inclination do such things… I wondered.

Later while staying in her house I realized that the two things that these roadside Romeos had an abundance of: time and enough money to throw around. To add it was also conducive to their interests that they had like-minded friends who thought little or nothing about the absolute lack of dignity in their acts of loitering around places where girls used to frequent, wanting to pounce on them and unleash their heckling talents. Many of these uncouth lots from refined families were indulging in hazardous and reckless driving and it was irritating to realize that they lacked the minimum control that a skilled driver would have otherwise had over his vehicle. Add to this the scare that they threw on these girls and the reactions emanating from their suddenly having been surprised. The acts of these eve teasers spelled disaster and can be classified as causative factors for accidents, injury and infringing on a women‟s privacy and hence as clear as any other cognizable offence. It was around this time that I chanced upon many a girl being harassed in more ways than one on these roads that led them to college, where they came to fulfill their dreams of becoming better people by imbibing the light of knowledge but had to be victimized by the blinding acts of these miscreants who punctuated their roads and caused enough intolerable nightmares. Their adamant refusal to benefit from a good family background was evident in their acts and the need to bring this to the notice of proper authorities drove me to meet the principal of this college Chi. Na. Mangala ma‟am. Dr. Chi. Na. Mangala ma‟am, the principal of NMKRV College, was an educationalist to the core, who would rather that all her students be educated for life rather than a career. She extended her full support to me and unequivocally announced to me that any girl from her college who contributed to acts of eve teasing by being receptive to such advances would face severe action from her too. She even went to great extents to ensure that she did everything in her power as a capable human and as the principal of a pioneering educational institute to put a stop to this social evil. When I saw this elderly lady, who fought such social evils with every breath she took, unmindful of her personal battles with failing health, I realized that I too would have to do my bit to fight this. I had met Dr. Chi. Na. Mangala ma‟am and had got an insight into her overpowering persona earlier. When I informed her that there were a few of her students who were welcoming the distractions caused by these boys on the road, she immediately agreed and told me that she was willing to extend any cooperation necessary to bring these girls to book, as mentioned earlier. She also told me that she was willing to rusticate any girl whose behavior was not confirming with the standards prescribed. Once I took up the task of putting up a firm stance against eve teasing, nothing would deter me from swaying away from my goal. The goal that I have in mind was to walk on the road waging a war against the

unhealthy practice of eve teasing all my life. So far I have been able to live up to my promise, barring an instance or two. Even though I faced many an unpleasant incident in my struggle to dilute the intention to eve tease in people every time I chanced upon its proliferation, the barely visible silver lining to this really dark cloud was in my having met some exemplary people and reinvesting my confidence in aspirations for a cultured life, be they the victims themselves who showed a lot of spunk when supported, the police who were eager to take such eve teasers to task, parents and other relatives of eve teasers who took the eve teasers to task or even social activists who aided me to correct my grammar of social evils and many, many more, who played pivotal roles in taking society towards betterment. Grateful I am to everyone whom I came into association in course of my fight against eve teasing but not to the person or people who played the pivotal role in this entire circumstance as eve teasers. For the eve teaser deserves no applause for his demeaning acts and I would not like to thank these eve teasers for having been instrumental in my meeting such people.

The first instance that I ever tackled As mentioned earlier the place where I stayed was near NMKRV girls college and this proximity made me a witness to about 300 to 400 cars whizzing past me (this was in a residential colony in 1994-5) every single day. This harsh reality stared at me everyday as I had begun English Classes right opposite this college and spending my entire time in my classes I was appalled by the audacity of these eve teasers and the fact that there was no one to question them. Having made up my mind in a few months that I will tackle this issue as long as I could, the first step that I had to take was that of deciding on the best approach. I unwittingly had assimilated what my friends thought about eve teasing, I began discussing the same with my friends to get a fix on the issue, then I sounded off my thoughts regarding eve teasing to others. I found time to do all this while I was busy balancing my livelihood and my career, thus this minor process itself took me a few months time. After doing much informal groundwork about this, I then approached the police. The healthy outlook and the problem solving attitude of a police inspector Mr. Yogappa (Who I believe is the COD in Bangalore now) went a long way in strengthening my resolve to try to systematically assist in the eradication of eve teasing. None in my family (like most of the public) were used to making visits to the police station and without any idea as to what the situation would be and with all the fears that are inherent in a 24 year old lad I

went in and asked to speak to someone there. A constable directed me to the police officer on duty there, who turned out to be Mr. Yogappa. I greeted him and explained that instances of eve teasing was causing harassment to the residents near my home as many of the retired elders who were used to having a nap in the afternoon could not do so in peace as the vehicles with blaring music and irritating horns made it impossible for them to sleep for a while, not to forget the inconvenience caused to the victims, the girls themselves who were being harassed without reason. I ended my monologue with a plea that something should be done to bring this nuisance to an end. The police inspector who sat in front of me was under the impression that I had come there with a personal grievance and wanted some immediate relief, like those many who walk into his office every single day seeking something or the other. He asked me to sit down and began to chalk out the inability for the cops to be present at everyplace where such incidents take place… he then pointed that they were doing their best to have regular checks and booked eve teasers more on the pretext of some vehicle related offence (like checking them for valid driving licenses, possession of all the required vehicle documents like registration, insurance, etc.) to deter them from haunting the college vicinity. The most important problem that the police faced when it came to tackling cases related to eve teasing; that of a physical inability to be omnipresent was made clear to me for the first time then. After explaining the same he said words to the effect that an incredible change could take place if only the common man would (at least) hold the offender till the police came to the spot, as opposed to what was happening in reality - where the cops were called without holding the miscreants, giving the eve teaser ample time to leisurely indulge in his atrocious act and scoot from there. Mr. Yogappa emphatically stated that the cops were getting tired of rushing to spots where neither the aggrieved victim nor the wrongful victor was available and their inability to reconstruct the offence committed there due to the lack of willing witnesses. Noting my extreme enthusiasm to transmogrify my words into actions he challenged me to bring or notify us about as many cases of eve teasing as possible and he promised to take stern action against all of them, even if they were influential. This gave me ample courage and I walked out of the police station feeling that I would no longer be a mute spectator and it also gave me the satisfaction that I was now on my fontal steps to create a solution. In retrospect, I realize that not once was I concerned about the fact that my acts of resistance against the eve teaser will be a mere drop in the vast ocean but was keener on reacting to the problem in my own small but significant and sure way.

The next thing that I did was to give out the phone number of my English Classes (and later my pager numbers). That was also the time when I prided my skills at biking (as I was seriously preparing to create a time based intercity land endurance record between Bombay and Bangalore) and could assure my near and dear ones that I would meet them in case of any crisis within 15 minutes from any corner of Bangalore to wherever they were (a thing clearly of the past now). As I was teaching and taking care of the administration in my conversational English classes which was also situated next to NMKRV women‟s college, my presence there was assured for most of the time, thus making it easier for me to react to these instances of eve teasing. I met shopkeepers, STD booth owners, auto drivers (who parked their vehicles at the Nanda theatre stand, Chaat sellers and the such) explained the need to act against eve teasers and circulated my phone numbers to them. I did this with a request that they call me whenever they witnessed any instance of eve teasing and as I would be in the vicinity in all probability, I promised to rush and take a stand against eve teasing. This brought a lot of positive assurances from the people, who began filling me in on their frustration at these eve teasers who made business bad for them by loitering around and thus discouraging girls to transact with them. When I had earlier met and requested to take a stand against eve teasing and they had conveniently shied away. What I had asked them to do earlier presented a personal risk as they had to physically oppose the eve teaser. This, not one of them was prepared to do. Now all they had to do now was to call me in case of their being witness to an instance of eve teasing and not even get involved in the incident. This did not involve any risk to them as the eve teaser would never be able to identify who had instigated action against this deed. It was on a sunny afternoon that a call came through to my English classes from Vinay, whose brother manned the STD booth at the corner of the road stating that some boys had caught the hand of a girl who was having Paani puri in front of the booth and had asked her “Barteeya?” which in Kannada meant “Will you come?” This girl, who was appalled at being touched and being asked thus, did the most natural thing that a woman in her circumstance could do; she fell to the ground and began crying. The boys made a few more remarks and got into a white Tata Sumo. This was the information passed on to me over the phone by Vinay. I immediately called the Jayanagar police and spoke to Inspector Yogappa regarding the incident and he assured me that he would be sending some constables to the spot and asked me to hold the boys till they came. Bracing myself for my fontal onslaught against such miscreants I took my bike and rushed to the corner and saw the girl crouching and crying next to the Paani puri stall and a few of her friends consoling her. I

then asked Vinay‟s brother as to where the boys were. He said that they had gone ahead towards Nanda Theatre, I rode down the road and could see the vehicle proceeding slowly ahead. On reaching them I saw that they were engrossed in checking out other girls. I ripped ahead of them and stopped my bike right in front of the Sumo in such a way that they could not move ahead at any cost and then signaled them to slowly follow me to the side of the road as to not obstruct traffic flow, while I did so I took care to ensure that they would not be able to pass me by and escape. I saw that there were quite a few boys inside the vehicle and a sting of fear had a good grip over me. The tall lanky boy who was driving the van asked me as to why I had held them up and I stated very politely that they had to wait till the police came to find that out. Then 9 boys got down from the van and one by one they shouted abuses at me demanding what right I had to stop them. I stood my ground and was relentless inn the face of the commotion they created; this made a crowd gather near us among who were quite a few auto drivers parked opposite Nanda Theatre. On their intervention I explained that I was just making sure that the boys stayed put till the police arrived. I then explained to them that these guys had caught hold of a girl‟s hand and asked her if she would come with them, all I had done was to in turn ask them if they could come with me to the police station and as they had refused I was waiting for the police constables to arrive. I told the boys that my logic was that if they could walk up to a girl on the road and ask her to come with them, then they had to respect my right to do the same thing to them. I asked them if it was wrong of me to ask them to come with me. The auto drivers who came initially and were shouting at me for blocking the Sumo changed their reaction after hearing me out and they agreed that what I said made sense, especially since I reasserted that all I want to do was to take them to the cop station, and that if I was in the wrong then I was willing to pay the price for it when the cops would take me to task. The auto drivers and the others who had gathered around us by then supported me and told them that what I demanded was not unfair and that if I had detained them without reason then I was sure to face the consequences at the police station. Within some time two constables arrived there and I addressed them and described the uncouth act of the boys and demanded that they be taken to the police station immediately. Three of the boys scooted when the constables arrived on the scene but I was unable to hold them back as the constables were still to understand what was happening there and were not supporting me. They were more interested in solving the matter and getting back to their lives.

They rudely asked me to forget what happened and go on with my life. I insisted and told them that I had a grievance against the boys and would give a written complaint against the boys to the police officers at the station and all that I requested them to do was to get the boys to the station. More for the fear of making the public feel that they were not doing their duty than wishing to aid me, they huddled the boys to the Sumo and took them away from public gaze with me following on the bike. The Sumo, instead of stopping at the police station, stopped alongside the park on the way to the police station and I too stopped my bike near the front window of the Sumo wondering what happened. There the constables and the 6 boys started reasoning with me and began asking me to nip this issue in the bud instead of taking it to the cop station. The way the constables were speaking for the boys made me realize that the boys they had already passed some money to them and the behavior of the boys, who kept saying that they would be glad to do anything else than take this issue to the police station, made me realize that the constables were keener on monetary gains than more than bringing some wrongdoers to book. That was when I told both the constables that Inspector Yogappa had already spoken to me on the phone and that I waited for a while and then told them that I will have to report the fact that they sat and discussed something with the boys instead of rushing them to the police station to Mr. Yogappa. This took the wind out of the constables and they immediately asked the boy driving the Sumo to head to the police station. I rushed ahead to the police station and asked for inspector Yogappa stating that the eve teasers were there. Within a few moments the inspector came out and charged towards me asking the constables if I was the eve teaser. Though I had spoken to him a few days earlier he had forgotten me and his words were enough to strike terror into my heart. I shuddered and explained to him in broken sentences that I was the person who had spoken to him over the phone a short while ago and that I had brought the eve teasers in. He remembered and asked me what had happened. I explained how the 9 boys had approached and held the girls hand and also informed him that we had managed to get only 6 as 3 of them had run away. He waited for the boys at the entrance of Jayanagar Police station and they came in with the two constables. He then lined them up and asked them very politely, “Who are you guys, what happened? Why has this man brought you here?” one of the boys said, “Sir, we did not harm anyone, we were going in the car when this man brought us here.” To which Inspector Yogappa stated, “What were you doing near the college?” again in a very condescending way, giving them the impression that he was with them and was merely making a routine enquiry. The boys were emboldened by the meek way in which Inspector Yogappa spoke and one of them said in a more confident tone, “Sir, we were roaming in our van, it is my father‟s

petrol and our money, we were just going around the college. What right does this man have to stop us in the middle of the road and insult us?” I was unsure of what was happening then and stood a mute witness to these transactions, but by then the inspector had ascertained their attitudes from their ruffian like behavior in the police station and he started thrashing them with his bare hands, one by one he started slapping them saying, “What made you go around a women‟s college? What reason did you have to be there?” and he asked one of the constables to get a cane and said to them again, “Why were you roaming around a woman‟s college? How dare you say it is your father‟s money and your car? Don‟t you know that these are public roads and you have to maintain decency?” The moment the trashing began the confidence and the arrogance of the boys took a deep plunge. Then the inspector added, “I have already got three witnesses who saw you holding the girl‟s hand and they have given their statements and their addresses. It is not at all difficult for me to file an FIR against you boys and take you to the courts.” Two of the boys immediately stated that they had nothing to do with the whole episode and that they did not even know what was happening with the girl as they were inside the van all the time. Mr. Yogappa then warned them and stated that if they do not come out with the truth he will put them in the lockup immediately. He confirmed from one of the constables to check if one of the prison cells in the station was vacant. This put a scare in all the boys and when one of the two boys who had earlier feigned innocence stated that they did commit this mistake and pleaded with the inspector to not be stern with them, all the other boys joined one by one and they admitted to having committed the offence. The constables standing at the station and others began reprimanding the boys for their uncouth act immediately. Then taking the cane that the constables had got, he gave them a sound trashing for a minute or two and then calling the head constable, he asked him to seize the vehicle and take these boys inside and call their parents there and to file an FIR from me. He warned the boys saying that they will not be let out unless one of their parents (and none else would be entertained, he reminded them) came there and took them away after giving their personal assurance that such acts will not be repeated by these boys in future. Then he again went to the boys and warned them that he knew how to tackle things when influence was used and underlined to them that the consequences would be worse if they try to put any kind of pressure on him. He also ordered the constables that if any influential people called regarding this case the callers name, address and phone numbers should be noted down and they must be asked to come over immediately to meet Mr. Yogappa, whoever they be.

He ended his instructions by again making it clear to the boys that they should never ever engage in such an activity at any cost. He then took me inside and ordered for coffee. At the outset I thanked him for taking such stern action and also told him that it was very encouraging for the public to know that their complaints were taken in all seriousness. I told him that I had renewed confidence that eve teasing could be tackled easily. I also asked him if it would be a bother if I took up the task of holding eve teasers on a daily basis and attempt to better the situation within a month or two. He welcomed this suggestion and said that even if he was not there at the station he would instruct the constables to hold the eve teasers and call him or take stern action themselves. It took more than a month or two, in fact tacking an average of 2 to 3 eve teasers daily it took me an approximation of 8 to 10 months to weed out the problem to a greater extent with the active aid of the Jayanagar Police. Along with Inspector Yogappa, Inspector Y. Nagaraju, Inspector Kumaraswamy and Inspector Shivanna (who had an M A in Kannada literature) aided me. Constable Manjunath and Shantaveeriah who were in the station in the mornings were usually the ones who rushed to the spot when I had to hold the eve teasers in extreme cases and Constable (Writer) Pranesh too kept sending constables every time I called the station and also aided in keeping the uncontrollable miscreants at bay at the station till senior officers took them to task. The first year I only worked in and around Jayanagar, Basavangudi and Kormangala as my work was centered in these vicinities. In all the incidents that took place a small percentage of them was actually brought to the notice of the police. My first move was to stop on spotting an incident of eve teasing or watch out for possible attempts to eve tease or rush to the spot where eve teasing was taking place (when called by my friends or my contacts). The next course of action was to await the actual act of eve teasing and stop it at the nick of the moment when it was about to take place or catch the attention of the eve teasers by calling out to them. Then I used to talk to them in a very calm and decent manner and asked them if what they did was right or reminding them that they were not supposed to behave like uncivilized brutes. The reaction to this would either be: A) The eve teasers who were first timers (or had tried eve teasing a few times at a safe distance and were trying their luck at bigger bounty) and belonged to respectable families immediately realized the gravity of their offence and were gripped by the fear of societal embarrassment, they used to immediately apologize and scoot out of the place as soon as possible. That is when I asked them to spare a few

moments and reiterated to them that they took the easy way out and I was happy that they were decent enough to state that they will never indulge in such a thing again. Then I used to request them to make sure that their friends too do not indulge in such an act. They understood the risk involved when the public took note of such incidents and questioned their sanity in indulging in them. The victory here was clearly in the satisfaction that a set of people, meaning the guys who promised to not indulge in it and their friends who on hearing about what happened would not indulge in eve teasing. B) Another popular reaction by hardened eve teasers was that of abusing the people who questioned them and caught them in the act. This is indulged by those who had never been questioned in the past and had always gotten away with their acts of eve teasing to such an extent that every instance of eve teasing only saw them graduating to more ludicrous/insulting ways of bringing embarrassment on the faces of their victims. They used filthy language in a bid to embarrass those who hold them up and also to remind those who interfere that they were in a league of their own which others would be very uncomfortable in. When they used foul language, in earlier days I stuck to my level of decency and used to keep them at the spot till the cops came there, no matter what rot they spoke about me. Without saying a single bad word I used to scream out at them in such a voice that they knew instantly that I meant business. I resorted to this to send a strong signal to them about my not being deterred by their use of bad language and also to show them that an equally strong abuse can be in the form of a person who has the conviction to stand his ground in the face of abuses without stooping to their level. This also showed them that even if I did not react in the same way I had the guts to question their authority to do so. I then used to explain to them in a stern voice that it would be better if they realized their folly and stopped indulging in such behavior, else it would not harm me to spend an hour or two in taking them to the police station where the police would make them realize their mistake and then let them go only after getting their parents to apologize for what they did. After hearing this and gauging the possibility of punishment that they might incur in the hands of the police and their families, they would lose their steam. They would then rush out of the place after a scuffle. In case the opposition to their act is not coming in a strong way from a person who is unable to exert enough authority they might also cause harm to the person questioning them. Whatever be the reaction of the eve teasers, be it docile submission and retreat or an aggressive outburst as explained in the earlier two paragraphs, it is important to understand that no battle can be won if your resolve to fight dilutes half way. Another important thing is to ensure that one always pays heed to the theory of balanced punishment called „Hedonistic Calculus‟. This theory simply states that an offender

should be punished in a way that the pain that his punishment causes him is a little more than the pleasure that he has derived by his improper act. · CAUTION: The bottom-line is that every eve teaser is to be made to give up his urge to eve tease. Many eve teasers may reach this state of mind when members of the public question their suspect behavior or after being sternly reprimanded. It is only a small percentage of people who have to be taken to the police station to be made to understand this. Taking each and every case to the police station will only make the youth feel that what happened was not fair to them and that by itself may act as a causative factor for rebelling against the unjust norms laid by society. This will further deter them from adhering to other norms that are prescribed by society. This way of proportionately assessing the pleasure he derives by an uncouth act and meting out punishment that will override this pleasure that he derives will deter him and others from indulging in such acts as they are bound to cause them an equal amount of pain or more. This will make them think a tribizillion times before they even wish to experience the denied pleasure of harassing a girl. Prof. K. C. Gopalakrishna, my economics professor in the National Law School of India University would not tire of reminding us over and over again that any social phenomenon to be understood in a holistic way and in a way that will provide a complete solution for it by eradicating the root cause will have to be studied by taking into account the economics of the situation. I strongly agree with him and state that his theory holds good even in the case of eve teasing where the economic analysis of eve teasing shows that: a) The financial empowerment of women is sure to eradicate the root cause of eve teasing, that of acknowledging a supposed/existing* (*supposed in terms of the urban educated and existing as in the hard hitting reality as seen in every other nook and corner of India, starting from the 15000 odd villages and the 4000 towns and small cities.) subjugation to men. By becoming financially independent a woman is no longer an object of ridicule for most of the males. b) Men, by indulging in the act of eve teasing, are also reminding women that they are living at the their mercy from womb to tomb and that they have no right to complain and that they have to grin and bear the atrocities of men from time to time. This is taken as the gratitude and repayment for the benevolent act of man bestowing on her the greatest favor of feeding her all her life and keeping her with him. Therefore he has been bestowed with an unseen right written to his advantage that gives him the unchallenged privilege to outrage the modesty of women starting from his cheap indulgence in eve teasing to that of worse atrocities. Thus realizing fully well that the eradication of eve teasing is only possible when it is poisoned, axed, shot, knifed, burnt, all at the same time… in simpler words when it is attacked at all angles. So now

understanding this social evil in all its magnitude I began to think of other steps that I could take or instigate others to take to educate women to tackle this and take away the very intention of every man to indulge in this. To do this effectively the methods I formulated to follow were: · · Catch and make every eve teaser understand that his act is wrong If the above is not possible at least instill in him the fear of punishment that will restrain him from not committing this act again and also for reason of being ridiculed by the public. · Educate all women to stand up against this evil every time they see it happen, be it to themselves or others and fight against it. · · Educate men to take the first steps in fighting this evil when they see it occur Educate parents and guardians to not put the blame of the act on their children and use this as a reason to restrict them in any manner whatsoever. This one act will strengthen the girl‟s resolve to directly report every act of eve teasing she faces to her parents and this itself will bring an end to the eve teasers acts, thanks to his cowardly nature. · Educate boys in homes, schools and colleges to respect women and to never ever give in to peer pressure or indulge in this act to prove to other boys that they are macho enough. · Educate girls to understand that it is finally up to them to wipe this out in such a manner that the mere thought of eve teasing should strike terror in the hearts and minds of the boys for fear of the dire consequences that they might face for indulging in it. · Build public opinion on this issue by every possible method to somehow get everyone to never ever ignore this existing social evil. · Make sure that every hardened eve teaser is made to admit this fact in front of his parents and that his parents aid in eradicating his urge to do so. · Ensure that every woman who has been eve teased is able to inform her parents without fear of the indirect consequences that she might fall victim to. Rome was surely not built in a day and to weed out a rampant social evil like eve teasing it will need a mind shift that has to be proselytized into an entire generation. This subscription of a decade or so to eradicate eve teasing should suffice to wipe out the very breath of eve teasing in all corners of India, provided that every single instance of eve teasing ever encountered is taken on a war footing by the

members of the public and tackled in a manner that will never eclipse the certainty of punishment to the eve teaser. Prof. V. S. Mallar, while enumerating aspects of development and the means to achieve it, stated emphatically that mere growth is insufficient and for growth to be beneficial to society, it has to be accompanied with the all important aspect of social justice. In his words it was only when social justice was appended to growth as a necessary corollary that any growth could be termed as development. Such growth might be that of an individual, an institution, an organization or an association. Thus even in cases of eve teasing it is important that we address the developmental perspective of providing social justice to women everywhere than focusing only on a few women who are progressing in some sectors and in some places. If one has to gauge the presence of culture in any society, it would not suffice if one merely studies the auditoriums and stages where culture is showcased and displayed once in a way. It is rather more important to gauge the advent of any society in truer terms of the amount of social justice it meets out along with the evident growth quotient that is present in it. Two reliable barometers to measure such presence of culture in any society are (a) the care taken in handling the public property by all the citizens and (b) the respect accorded to women in that society. In both these ways India has fallen short of even figuring in the graph. When it comes to public property one gets to witness periodical outbursts against public buses, benches and buildings where the masses give vent to their anguish and frustrations by damaging these easy targets. On the second measure the less spoken about the respect meted out to women, the better. It is pathetic to note that the Indian woman has been declared to be empowered by many around us, when in fact it is only a decimal section of the urban elite who can claim to be able to breathe according to their many (if not every) whim and fancy. The rest of the women go through enough trauma at the hands of society that comes into play much before their conception and they are not left in peace much after they cease to exist. How can one be complacent when it is proved that an approximation of 47 suicides every day end the incessant sufferings of Indian women who realize the futility in seeking redressal for their grievances from all existing sources. It is burdensome to think that we are plying the boroughs of a society that has not given them a ray of hope that will see them through their unending tunnel of troubles.

An Un-Holi Incident It was a day like any other for me, not for the many eve teasers lurking around in the guise of men across the city. For today presented an opportunity for them to play foul with women and benefit from the enormous protection made possible by religious sanction. Even Lord Shiva would have decided to not allow for any celebration or gaiety to mark his triumph over the act of killing Kamadeva (which marks the celebration of Holi) if he was aware that his triumph would bring shame to women many centuries later when this celebration would be used as a cover to unfold the lascivious intents of the countless men many centuries later. The prototype of a well balanced man who is idolized to date, many centuries after he is supposed to have walked this soil, Lord Sri Ramachandra too would have mellowed down all celebrations of his return to Ayodhya in the form of Holi if he had a premonition that men would misuse and maul womenfolk many centuries later on an annual basis. It was around March - April of the year 2001, Yogita and I had decided to get married to each other. It was a custom for us to meet up once in a way and lunch together to catch up with each other. One day I had given my bike for service at Zen motors to ensure that I could embark on another ride and thus she had to drop me home in her Kinetic Honda. After having lunch, she dropped me home and headed back home. I went back to writing an article that required to be published in a day or two and was engrossed in it in a short while. It was less than a minute or two after I engulfed myself in the article that the doorbell rang and Yogita came rushing in seething with rage. She shouted something to the effect that she wanted me to accompany her and take a few boys who had tried to play the fool with her just then to task. On seeing Holi colors on her clothes I realized what might have happened and immediately went out with her and searched for my bike and not finding it there I knew that the task ahead was going to be tougher on her Kinetic Honda, but nonetheless, we both rode out on it in search of those boys towards the place where she saw them last. On the way I asked her to explain what had happened. She informed me that while she was riding back her home near La Casa (an eatout) she saw a bunch of boys harassing some female riders ahead, to avoid them she decided to take a deviation and took a longer route to her home that went through the Jayanagar police station. The minute she took the deviation she was followed by these boys who relentlessly pursued her in front of the police station and then at the south end road intersection that is a mere 100 metres away from the police station waylaid her and then stopped their bikes in front of her and blocking her way they forced her to stop. They then smeared her with colors in an indecent manner. She began screaming out at them but they did not stop, she tried to hit one of them and she somehow managed to turn her vehicle away and rush out.

We searched every possible road in Jayanagar for around half an hour and were not able to find them though we met a few other gangs of boys playing holi. Yogita could not identify any of the boys and knew that the boys we saw were not the ones who splashed colors on her. She lost hope and told me the same, I told her that there was no way we would miss out on them and that we just had to persist and luck would favor us. Then we saw them after a while at 36th Cross near National College, Jayanagar. We halted at a distance and I asked her to take her time and identify the boys as I did not want to lash out at them if they were innocent. She pointed at a boy and told me that I was not to let him go in particular. We stopped the vehicle near them and I walked up to the particular boy Yogita had pointed out and stood behind him as he was sitting on the pillion seat of a bike. Then I tapped him on his shoulder and told all of them in a loud vice that none of them were to move and all I wanted them to do was to accompany me to the police station. They took one look at Yogita sitting on the bike behind me and guessed what had happened and what would follow too. Two of the boys then gave calls to the others to scoot and in an instant all of them started their bikes and they headed off in different directions. I caught this particular boy‟s shirt and as his vehicle began moving I ran behind it but I was unable to keep up and as the vehicle (a CBZ) picked up speed I had to let go, I immediately ran back to Yogita and then followed the boys. By then a few boys who were running had also jumped onto the bikes and we began following two bikes (the CBZ and a cream colored Bajaj scooter) the boy from the CBZ had got down and climbed behind two boys riding the Bajaj scooter. Single mindedly we pursued the scooter, the other two boys on the bike took another route, the scooter made its way through Jayanagar, Banashankari and then headed to Vidyapeetha Circle. All through the way I was screaming out at the people around us to hold the boys and being handicapped without my bike and having to make do with a Kinetic Honda I knew that catching up with the boys would be a little tougher, yet I was pushing the bike to its maximum and was able to reach them by the time they were nearing BMS College. As we neared the college I went near them and told them while I was riding near them that that I would bang into them if they did not stop, yet they did not pay any heed. Then I turned to Yogita and told her that I would now be banging into them and asked her not to worry as nothing would happen to her bike or to the boys. She agreed and I rammed into them opposite Bull Temple. All three boys fell and I fell on them. Before I could get up and tackle them two of them ran away from the spot as fast as possible. The particular boy I was chasing was taking all my attention, after he had fallen down I had caught his shirt again with my left hand and this time did not let go, it was then that I realized that he was at least six feet in height and my being much shorter made it tougher to keep a firm grip on him.

I was angered by the fact that these guys had the audacity to act funny with Yogita and I was also frustrated at their attempt to escape instead of facing the consequences of their act. I began hitting the boy hard with my right hand and gave him a few hard blows, all the while he tried his best to escape. I kept hitting him till I saw that my knuckle was bleeding but I did not want to let go of this boy, so I yanked the mat of the Bajaj scooter that was lying near us and holding it I began slapping his face with it. By then a crowd of around 200 people had encircled us and I could see Yogita nearby holding her Kinetic Honda. None of the people did anything other than watch, but that did not bother me much, what bothered me was when a man aged 24-27 held me and told me to let go of the boy. I asked if he knew what had happened and told him that he had misbehaved with Yogita. He told me that this person had gotten enough punishment for that already and I had to let him go. I was angered by his causal attitude and pointing the mat at him I told him, “If you do not keep quite then I will start hitting you too.” Saying so I continued slapping the mat on the face of this six footer, all the while asking him repeatedly if he will ever have the guts to misbehave with a girl again. He did not answer, I asked him again and again while trashing him. Before I could even get an answer from him, a few of the elderly people intervened and asked me to let the boy go and before I knew it they released the boy from my grip and coaxed him to run away from there. They restrained me and gave the boy enough time to disappear. Nothing I said had any impact on those people. In a mere moment, the boy was nowhere to be seen, but I had already noted that he had left the vehicle and I knew that I had a way to send a strong signal to all these boys to never misbehave with any lady in future. I asked Yogita to take her vehicle and follow me and I rode the Bajaj scooter to my class in Jayanagar. In my rage I forgot to ensure that Yogita would follow me and I had gone ahead of her. Knowing well that she might have headed back home, I took the vehicle to my class in Jayanagar and parked it there. On the way I remembered that some construction work was happening in the house next door and that they had kept some huge blocks of stones there. On reaching there I took one of those huge stones and began pounding every inch of the vehicle. It took me quite some time and effort to make dents in every past of the vehicle. With the help of some students (to whom I explained the fact that the vehicle belonged to an eve teaser) I even managed to damage the lock of the petrol tank and bust the mirror and number plates of the vehicle too. While I was doing so, I got a call from Yogita and she said that she had reached her home and had explained to her mother about what had happened and that her mother too was willing to accompany her to the police station to give a written complaint against those boys. After damaging the vehicle I rode it to the police station and walked in to meet the inspector. It was inspector Vasudev Murthy who was there that day, he was busy so I thought it best to call Allen Sir (As I called Allen J. Mendonca, the editor of

Bangalore Times at The Times of India) who had taken great pains to help me in my fight against eve teasing earlier. After hearing about what happened Allen Sir told me that this incident will be published by the paper and that the crime correspondent (Mr. Bansy Kalappa) would call the Jayanagar Police station and get further details and then ensure that this incident is not forgotten by the families of the eve teasers and that he would also publish the vehicle number and asked me for the same. I told him the vehicle number and thanked him for his support.

Then I again waited for a while before I could meet inspector Vasudev Murthy. I sat inside with him and explained the whole incident to him and asked him to take the eve teasers to task. By then constable Manjunath came in and asked the inspector to take a look at the vehicle. After seeing the dilapidated state in which the vehicle was, the inspector asked me as to what happened to it. I told him that the vehicle was mauled by me and I will willingly accept to having done it provided that these eve teasers are arrested when they come for the recovery of the vehicle and are punished for their offence. After a while Yogita and her mother came to the station and they too showed their willingness to assist the police without fear or favor to bring these boys to book. The inspector assured that action will be taken against the boys to which I replied that as a favor to me he should call me when the boys brought their parents and I will talk to them too. The inspector promised me that he would. A few days later I came to know that the Bajaj vehicle belonged to an RTO officer and that he had taken custody of the vehicle after the boys were produced to the station and after they were severely warned by the inspector and a written apology was given by them. After this incident occurred there were a few thousand such encounters with eve teasers in the next years to come. What brought it back in my memory was a visit to Mr. T. M. Gowda of Soundarya Arts (who had part sponsored one of my rides earlier.) office to distribute my wedding card. He was chatting with a person and I waited for him to finish. He welcomed my interruption and I informed him about my wedding. After inviting Mr. Gowda and his family I went on to give an invitation card to the man who was chatting with him out of courtesy saying, “I have met you by chance but I would like to take this opportunity to welcome your presence and blessings for my wedding.”

To this he replied, “You do not know me but I know you very well. You escaped getting beaten up by us a few years ago after what you did to my son‟s vehicle on Holi day. Why bring all that up now. You have a wedding coming up. We will take that matter up some other time.” I replied, “I remember and regret that day. I remember the uncouth behavior of a few boys and further regret not taking them to task all the way that day. Let me finish that task today as today is as good a day as any other.” Hearing this, the man said that his boys were not at fault and that they had been peacefully celebrating Holi when I took out my anger on them as I could not find the real culprits. I reasserted that I checked well before I pounced on them and that Yogita had identified the boy and I too was convinced that they were guilty when they rushed at the very mention of the police. I told him that Yogita would accompany me and identify the boys at that very moment. All this time Gowda was trying to change the topic by asking me where the marriage hall was and if all the arrangements were made, repeatedly coaxing me to forget the minor incident. I persisted and informed the other person about my willingness to meet his boy right then. At this point Mr. Gowda again changed the topic and bid goodbye to me without giving me an opportunity to further my talks with this man. He also held the other man at bay indulging him in some other conversation. With this incident it became clear that such onslaughts by those whom I had caught eve teasing will have to be borne by me for a lifetime. I also realized that the eve teasers would have concocted some story to suit the situation to underline their innocence as this boy had cleverly done by casting strong doubts on my act. This incident also made me decide that at times taking matters with hardened eve teasers to a conclusion; be it informing their parents or eliciting a promise from them that they would not indulge in such acts in future was always better than letting them off with a warning as they would go to any lengths to not accrue discredit to themselves and paint a different picture of what happens to their friends and family. This will not erase the want to eve tease in them and will only make them more aggressive as they would be under the belief that their act of eve teasing was right.

Family Approval There are instances where the girl can be held responsible for having instigated an act of eve teasing and make others feel that she welcomes such an approach by a boy. This is an incident about one such girl

who welcomed attention from a known boy in an uncommon manner and was also putting herself in a position where other boys too felt that she would encourage her advances. A girl was chatting with a guy standing on the edge of the drain for nearing four hours, from around 8 in the morning to 12:30 in the afternoon at the right side of the entrance to the college. This was brought to my notice by the juice vendor who walked up to me and informed me that this girl was standing outside the college gate opposite his juice center since he opened the shop and was inviting trouble in the form of attention from many a passing male who assumed that she was easy game for their advances. Being a student of that college she was surely inviting trouble as she would be noted by many of these boys who frequented the place to tease girls. I knew that it was none of my business yet I remembered that the principal Ma‟am Chi. Na. Mangala had made it clear to me that she would not encourage any girls who contribute to this act, hence I walked up to the principal and told her about the same, she immediately asked the watchman to go and bring the girl and the person she was talking to, to her chamber. The watchman came back with the girl who was sullen and meek when she entered the office and the boy with her was visibly scared. The principal asked her if she was a student of the college, when she got an answer in the affirmative the principal asked her as to why she was standing outside the college for the past two to four hours. The girl then gathered her wits and thinking that it was best to lash out, asserted that she was just talking to her neighbor and when her parents themselves did not mind her doing so why then was the principal interfering in this matter. Calling for her class teacher the principal enquired about aspects of her attendance, her behavior and her interest in studies. Her teacher informed that she was a student who fared well in her studies but was a bit irregular in her attendance. The principal reprimanded her in no uncertain words and reminded her that the college‟s responsibility was not limited to dishing out a degree to her but she had to ensure that every girl in her college turned out to be a better person and also conveyed that she was displeased by the manner in which this girl spoke just then. The girl was sure that she had done nothing wrong and more so about the fact that her act had the approval of her parents and she asserted the same. That was when the principal asked her if it was alright for her to call her residence and get someone from her place. The girl agreed to this, after which she called her home and spoke to her brother and told him that he was required to give some clarifications to the principal. He informed her that he would be there in some time. Her brother was there in the college within 10 minutes. When he came over he was informed about the situation. The girl told him that she was merely talking to her neighbor in front of her college and that the principal had unnecessarily intervened on my having informed her and asked her brother to defend her.

The brother screamed at the girl and asked her why she was talking to the neighbor in front of the college. He told her that he might be her neighbor but asked her what work did she have with him near the college and told her that she was welcome to talk to him inside her house but not on the road in front of the collage, she was told strictly that she was being sent to college not to do what she had done. He then spoke to the principal and understood what had happened that morning and asked the neighbor what work did he have with her that warranted him to speak to her for 3-4 hrs, first thing in the morning. He made it clear to both the boy and the girl that they had no authority to behave thus and emphatically pronounced that the girl cannot claim any support from her family when she indulged in such things. He then thanked the principal for having taking the right decision and for bringing this to his notice and left with the girl. Any girl is wrong to assume that her unnecessary indulgence in idle chat in public places is appreciated by her folks. A proverb in Kannada states “Dushtara Sangha Doora iru” which simply means that one should avoid the company of bad people. In the same way is it not pertinent that every girl fully fathoms that she can let loose her guard with no detriment to herself in a protected environment but she should also not allow herself to attract unwanted attention in certain public places.** **Check Trishna‟s article where she stresses she carefully chooses her clothes in a way to suit her comfort level and also keeps tabs on the latest trends in what she wears in Commercial Street or M G Road or Brigade Road, but when it comes to visiting Kalasipalya or Majestic then every other thing takes a back seat in front of the all important aspect of not attracting unwanted attention. **Personally I am an advocate of “lazziez faire” or the “hands off‟ theory used in economics that states that one should not try and manipulate the market (the relationship between demand and supply) so it is my strong belief that every man or woman has a right to behave in whatever manner she pleases as long as it does not involve the committing of an offence or as long as it is reasonable in the eyes of other reasonable people.

Eve teasing When Harmless As Mr. Mariswamy, whom I met when he was the Commissioner of Police, Bangalore City, made a valuable demarcation between eve teasing that is not offensive in nature and one that has the approval of decency. He stresses the need to make a distinction about eve teasing as a phenomenon and eve teasing as an offence.

I have experienced some incidents of eve teasing which almost bordered on decent admiration, but fell short by a notch. The line that separates these two is very thin and is left to the perception of the existing society, the place where it happens, the time of occurrence and such other factors. I was walking home from class one day when I noticed a car parked ahead to the left side of the road; a lone person sitting in the car was playing some music. As I heard it I realized that he was not indulging in recreation by playing music but was merely repeating one line from a song. The line that had held his fascination so was “Tumse milne ko dil karta hai… re baba… Tumse milne ko dil karta hai…” This was one of the few times that I was in a dilemma myself and restrained myself from taking the person to task as I felt that going by any definition he was giving himself some benefit of doubt. Another instance when an eve teaser amused me more than he angered me was brought to my notice by my teachers. They pointed out that a college boy was staring at them everyday at around 4 pm and asked me to be around at that time to tackle him. I waited that evening and as reported a slightly plump boy of around 20 years wearing spectacles cycled to the spot and stood there, visibly without any work. I waited for a few minutes and then saw him staring at girls passing by but not doing anything else objectionable. After 10 minutes I walked up to him and asked him why he was standing there. He told me in a nerdish manner that he was just checking out the girls in about the same words. I asked him if that was a right thing to do, to which he answered that he was not harming anyone. He then seemed familiar to me and I realized that he was my friend‟s neighbor. I then told him my friend‟s name and informed him that I knew where he stayed and enquired if we should bring this to his parents notice. He thought for a moment and said that he was only standing and looking, I then asked him, “How dare you come to NMKRV college to do so?” Visibly agitated he said, “MCC (Mount Carmel College) is very far” and added “If I cycle till there I will be very tired!” I was dumb stuck by his reply.

Giving Up the Fight It was not always that the outcome of accosting eve teasers was favorable; there were two instances when things soured for me too. In all fairness I have to record my reactions to them to ensure that a person reading this book knows the flip side of standing up against a social evil. Though I will never plead guilty to having allowed eve teasing to occur with my silent consent, it is not always that I have played the part of the brave anti eve teasing campaigner. It is true that there have

been instances when I too have chickened out and found myself to be incapable of tackling a ruffian group of eve teasers in a stringent manner. In both the instances that I am about to state I was clearly not capable of furthering the fight and I saved my skin at some stage. Though I have been able to fight my fears to a greater extent, but while tackling these two instances fear had a firmer grip on me. The extent of fight that one can put up when faced with an instance of eve teasing depends on the mental make-up of each individual and that there is no set generalization that can be resorted to earmark it.

The Thugs in the Car The first instance where I was scared, nearly out of my wits and deserted any thoughts of a foolhardy attempt at bravery was in the initial stages when I fought against eve teasing. One day after playing basketball I was sipping from a glass of fruit juice at around 7:30 in the morning (in those days Jayanagar Complex too was replete with the old world charm of Bangalore, with chirping birds, fully flowered trees and people sauntering in to begin their chores and set up their shops at around 8 am.) in Jayanagar complex. This was when I saw two guys in a Maruti car near the juice center making obscene cat calls to a girl who was walking by. A few boys who were also back from a fresh morning game or workout were the first to notice this and they began making smart comments looking at the men in the car. Emboldened by their act I too shouted out to the guys asking them if what they did was right. Both of them made verbal attacks on me which was punctuated with expletives from within the car and rushed out at me in a roughish manner. Suddenly out of nowhere the parking guy who was usually there made me get away from there saying that I was not aware about these men and that I should think about saving my skin and not getting into any argument with them. I realized that the parking guy was able to recognize me and knowing me as one of his customers he was just looking out for me, so I asked him who these men were and why was he forcing me to stay away from them. He replied saying that they were hardened rowdies who would not stop at anything and that they were to be feared by all. I felt a fear right then but I stayed back wanting to have a chat with them. I tried to hold ground and fight on behalf of these girls but when I saw three of those thugs walk menacingly towards me, I knew that I will not be able to talk sense to them. In a moment I was on my bike and was heading home after making sure for a few times on the way that these people were not following me.

The Unspeakable Words The second instance was that of a car blaring loud music on the road next to the college, all this to catch the attention of two girls who were walking on the road. I followed the car even as they were honking every time they passed by any girls. After ensuring for the third time that they were intentionally honking I went near them and rode alongside the window. I saw them ogling at two girls coming near, their annoying horn blared again. I stopped the bike in front of them and asked them if what they did was right. They doled out a mouthful of obscenities at me. This was when I saw two lecturers of NMKRV College walking nearby within earshot. I again asked him politely as to why he was doing rounds of the road, but he did not answer me properly and continued mouthed obscenities in front of the two lady teachers who were walking near me. At that time I was unable to give a fitting reply as I did not want these teachers to witness a brawl to which I was an active perpetuator. That was when I sulked away from that place before I was further degraded.

The Ear Incident One afternoon in October 2002 that I was heading back home on my bike after teaching some students on behalf of NIE (The Times of India) in a school near Malleswaram. I bought two bangle stands for my wife and after putting them in two plastic covers started off again. I had planned to open a class in Malleswaram around that time, so I was riding very slowly and checking out the shops watching out for any place available for rent. When I neared 8th cross riding up Sampige Main Road, I saw a traffic constable manning an intersection. As there were many vehicles in front of me I stood waiting at the right side of the road which was a one way. That was when I saw two guys standing on the sidewalk and in an instance when two girls walked by one of these men tugged on the end of the duppatta, the girl mouthed some insult at him and walked ahead. I impulsively called out to one of these men and when he came near me I slapped him in rage as I was sitting on the bike. He was stunned by what I did and was trying to back out. Before he could go away I held him by his shirt but he kept going behind. I had to let my vehicle fall down as I held on to his shirt and walked with him. His other friend who was a thin bearded man was behind me to the left now as I had moved ahead still holding this man‟s shirt. I was asking him why he had tugged at the girl‟s dress when I saw the bearded man from the corner of my eye trying to slap me. In the last moment I tried to escape the blow that was heading for my nose and ducked. Unfortunately the bearded man had the advantage of height and of catching me unawares. The slap fell square on my ear.

Though I did not experience any pain right then I immediately heard a buzzing sound emanating my ear. I had no time to think of it as I was concentrating on not letting these two guys go. I still held on to the shirt. By then a few people had gathered and asked them as to what was going on and why I was holding that guy. The constable who was manning traffic too had come there after checking the commotion. Both of them attacked me saying that I had picked up a quarrel without reason and was now accusing them of teasing some girls to save my skin. Then I began arguing vehemently that they were at fault a stout dark mustached man walked to the man who had pulled the dupatta and trashed him around without saying anything. Then he told everyone there that he was the owner of a shop nearby and that two girls had came to his shop just then and had told him that this man had indeed pulled the dupatta and asked him to help me out as they knew that these eve teasers were at fault and that they did not want to walk up to the crowd and say the same personally as they were afraid. A few members of the crowd who had gathered rebuked and trashed the eve teasers who vehemently apologized for their behavior. The shop owner asked me if I wanted to file a case against them. Realizing that would have enough memories of this incident to haunt them for a lifetime I asked the eve teasers to indulge in such an act again and asked the crowd to let them go. By the time I reached my residence I had a throbbing pain in my ear. On going inside and seeing that my wife was asleep I went to another room and quietly lay down to forget the pain. In the evening when I put some cotton in my left ear I realized that it was bleeding. It is nearing two and a half years since this incident happened. I still experience recurring pain for many hours in a day. Consultations with the best of doctors have not yielded a permanent solution yet. I keep reminding myself that no reward is possible without risks and to lessen the menace of eve teasing in my own small yet sure way I had to take many a risk and when a risk blows up on my face I cannot hold any one else responsible for it. I know that this is a small price to pay and cannot look at it in any other way. While riding the bike I am unable to bear loud sounds of the traffic and am in constant discomfort in rush hours even while driving my car in the midst of heavy traffic. My wife has accompanied me to many sittings with the doctor but not once has she spoken against my act. It is a joke between us that now I am an old man who is unable to listen. Many a times I am unable to hear things that she says clearly. If you ever get to see my wife and me together, in all probability, I will be standing to her left to hear her better with my right ear.

The Rich Influential Spoilt Brat This is a very interesting incident which proves that any education and inculcation of values should be imbibed by a child at home and this is possible nowhere else. I was teaching at my class when the panipuri vendor walked up to me and called me out of class. I asked him what the matter was and he informed me about a particular Safari car (purplish color) that had already made two rounds and that it had a set of boys who were busy passing loud comments at girls and embarrassing them. I stood near the gate and awaited the arrival of the car again. Within a minute I saw the car come by with a bunch of boys in it listening to loud music and also jeering at girls from inside. I called out to them to stop but they increased their speed and went on. I took the bike and followed them and got the car to a halt at an intersection. I saw a tall lanky kid aged around 15 in the driver‟s seat in the car. He was unruffled at being stopped and by this gesture itself gave me an impression that he was a tough nut to crack. I decided to not get into an argument with him and merely asked him for his driving license. He asked me why he had to show it to me and I replied that I was a citizen who had a right to know if children driving vehicles on the road had a valid driving license or not. He handed a plastic booklet that had his DL (driving license) book. As soon as I opened that book a good many visiting cards of quite a few ministers sat on my palm and it included the chief minister‟s son visiting card too. I just tilted the plastic booklet and all the cards fell to the ground, doing so I asked him what his name, age and address was to verify if the card really belonged to him. He told me all these correctly. Thanking him, I asked him to collect the DL book from the police station. He said that he will accompany me right then to show me who he was, I welcomed him to do so and went on to the police station. As I went to the police station and waited at the gate the sentry greeted me and asked him what the matter was, I told him what happened and showed him the brand new Safari vehicle that as being parked opposite the police station. The constable had one look the boy getting down from the Safari and said it will be futile if I tried to get him to acknowledge and obey rules. I asked him if that was because he was a spilt rich brat with an influential father and he answered that was the exact reason and he also informed me that they had held him thrice earlier near Vijaya High School and though he was clearly in the wrong a few phone calls had ensured that he was let go without as much as a warning. I then knocked at the half wooden doors of the inspector‟s room and on seeing Yogappa Sir entered after seeking his permission. Then I told him that I had an interesting character there to meet him and explained exactly what happened in two sentences. I had barely finished doing so that the door opened and this boy entered without even bothering to knock. If that was walking a step towards his grave his

next act was even more atrocious, he walked up to the inspector Yogappa who was sitting quietly and putting his hand on the inspector‟s shoulder said, “Uncle, this person has…” No sooner than he touched the police inspector, Yogappa sir pushed him aside and said, “How dare you address me as your uncle, how dare you touch me?” and began trashing him. He then asked him not to lie to him and asked him as to why he had been near NMKRV College to which this boy answered in fear that he was just roaming around the college with a few of his friends. Yogappa sir then asked the boy to give him his father‟s mobile number, the boy fell at his feet and told him that his father was in Delhi and he could not be called, when asked for his residence number the boy said that his mother had heart trouble and she was not to be called. Yogappa was taken aback by these answers. He then called the constable and asked him who this kid was. The constable immediately took the name of a very influential local politician who was known for his dubious behavior. The boy was still holding the inspector‟s feet and was relentlessly pleading to be let off. On being asked by the inspector the constable stated that this boy was a student of Vijaya High School and had been caught indulging in such acts outside his school many a times by the cops but had always used his influence to get away. Once, the police had acted on the request of the principal to take note of unscrupulous elements outside the school at closing time and had caught hold of this boy with his friends. That was when the principal had issued a severe warning to him and had made it clear that the next time he indulged in some such an act he would be expelled. Yogappa sir stated that this boy was not one to change and no mercy was to be shown to him after all that had happened and he took his telephone book out and called a number. When the call got connected he asked for the principal, immediately this boy who was still holding the inspector‟s feet began wailing loudly to the inspector to not talk to his principal. The inspector then got connected to the principal and he chatted with the principal about the road safety week program that was proposed for the school students. He spoke for about 10 minutes and every time he continued the conversation with the line, “Another thing I wanted to talk to you about was…” and “About the students in your school…” the boy holding his feet went into a frenzy and began requesting him over and over again to not tell his principal about anything. Just before the inspector kept the phone down he asked the principal to excuse him for a second and placing his hand on the receiver of the phone he asked the boy if he should be reported to the principal, the boy began pleading with him not to and the inspector said, “This is my last warning to you and this is your absolute last chance. I do not care if your father uses his influence and gets me transferred but before that I will personally take you home and trash you on the road.” So saying he spoke into the receiver again and bid goodbye to the principal.

Then he asked the constable to take the boy and seize the vehicle and ordered him to release it only after someone from his house came and paid a fine to the court. The boy was then ushered out of the room. The inspector then explained to me that these boys from such families pick up a total disregard for rules as they are aware that their fathers too flaunt them and that he wanted to give a stern warning to the boy and in the same breath not put his education at stake. He also informed me that he would keep track of this boy and ensure that the tendency in him to eve tease too is taken away.

A Twist in the Tale There are innumerable instances where the eve teaser, when questioned by any member of the public, comes to know about the gravity of his act and accepts his mistake immediately, but there are a few hardened eve teasers who will show how influential they are. I recall this particular instance where I failed to drive home the message to a hardened eve teaser even after taking him to the police station, which I thought was the penultimate step (the ultimate step being that of informing the eve teasers parents about the act) but then realized that such failure too was shortlived by an interesting development. It was around 4 in the evening, the time when NMKRV girls college students were heading back home. That was when I had ordered a burger at Dev‟s Favorite Snacks and went back to some writing work for Topnotch Communications, the publication outfit that I was working for at that time. I heard loud beats and music and saw a swanky car with huge Hella speakers in front, fog lights and the works cascading down the road with loud music blaring. I saw four enthusiastic boys in the car looking out at the girls on the road as it passed by once and was amazed at the time, effort and energy these kids were willing to expend on impressing unknown girls. Leaving it at that I went back to my writing work, in a few minutes the car returned again with music blaring to such an extent that I could hear them even when they were 100 meters away. I walked to the road and stood awaiting the car in the middle of the road. The car came up to me and stopped. Walking up to the boy driving the vehicle I requested him to reduce the volume as he was less than a few meters away from an educational institution. He said, “Ok! Don‟t get worked up!” and went ahead. He had not taken the car even 20 feet away when he again increased the volume of the car to its earlier deafening level. Getting onto my bike I went behind them forgetting the food that I had ordered. I caught up with them in a few moments and asked him what the meaning of his act was. He defied me and said that he was least interested in what I had to say. I asked him if I could ask him to accompany me to the police station to

which he said that it would turn out to be a joke at my expense. I followed them to the station as he insisted on leading the way. His readiness to take me to the police station made me realize that he had a good amount of influence to goad him to do bad things without fear. When we reached the police station he informed me that he would be out in less than 15 minutes as he was an MLA‟s nephew. I said words to the effect that it was not the act but the effect that I was concerned with and that I would willingly take him to the police station a thousand times if he kept roaming around a girl‟s college with his friends, unmindful of his impending easy exit in 15 minutes. I walked into the station and explained what had happened to the station-in-charge. After waiting there for quite some time I met Pranesh, the station writer and informed him about my intention of filing a complaint against the boy if needed and resumed waiting. In a few minutes I was thanked for having brought these boys to the police station and after being assured that the due course of action would be followed I was asked to leave. I went back to Dev‟s Favorite Snacks and found that my burger was served to someone else and after ordering another fresh burger I continued writing my article. In a few minutes the burger was ready and as lunch was really late and my hunger pangs were unbearable, my usual clumsiness while devouring a burger was heightened. It was less than half an hour since I had left the police station when the same flashy car was parked in front of the eat-out and I saw the MLA‟s nephew walking out towards me. I prepared myself for an impending boastful attitude from his end and reassured myself that still he had indulged in a base act and as far as I was concerned he was standing in shame. He sat opposite me and said, “I told you that it will be a matter of minutes before I come out and I was not wrong. But I have to admit that you too were not wrong in what you did… My friends and I did not mean any harm and were only indulging in time-pass. I was angry with you for taking us to the police station but now I have come back to say sorry to you as I have realized that you did right. I may have got out of the police station fast but it does not bring me any credit, I know that the police too will be scoffing at what I did and will make me and my uncle the butt of their jokes. This is a lesson that I will remember for the rest of my life. Sorry and I promise you that henceforth I will not encourage my friends to do such thing too.” This was something that came unexpected, I know that regret is expressed by very few people and the manner in which he said it convinced me that what had almost become a futile action was saved by his self realization and his attitude of accepting his past misdeed.

After that day I was strengthened in thinking that every single instance of reprimanding an eve teaser was well worth it as it would have a definite effect and would also help in changing the mindset of an eve teaser in some fashion or the other.

On Rear View This incident happened much before I got into the habit of questioning the sanity behind the actions of eve teasers. As I was walking from a bus stand to my home, I saw a car cruising very slowly but in style with the mandatory loud music blaring out, as I made way for the car to pass I could not help but notice a few boys who seemed to have got the best of everything in life. They proved me wrong in a moment when they took the car close to a set of girls walking by and deliberately ensured that their rear view mirror brushed against a girl walking closest to the road. I am unsure as to what happened next. I was too stunned by what had happened to even register what the reaction of the girls or the boys in the car was. I just remember asking myself if I had to run behind the car or break the rear glass door of the car or shout at them… I did no such thing. I remember that this incident kept bringing itself in front of my mind for the next few days and I cursed my inaction several times. In retrospect when I think of this incident now I am thankful now that at least whenever possible my acts and wits have always been channeled against this social menace with failure rates in decimal levels.

My Fall from Grace It was not always that my resolve to bring eve teasers to book was fruitful and without any harm to me. However skilful one is, when emotions get the better of him, disaster strikes, the same was the case when I was enraged by the acts of two young kids, aged around 18 on a bike who were incessantly following two girls who were on a TVS Scooty. An ordeal that began in Ashoka Pillar continued for a kilometer and half till Jayanagar 4 th „T‟ Block, initially I was under the impression that the girls were friendly with the boys as they seemed to be going together, but then when the girl riding the Scooty turned back and spat towards the guys following on the bike did the truth behind the situation dawn on me. Realizing that the girls were trying to lose these boys following them I rode towards the boys and honked till I got their attention. The minute I advanced towards the guys they came to know that they would walk into a dangerous situation if they stopped, so the rider gathered speed and kept going past the girls in a bid to escape me as soon as possible. Instead of my usual calm pursuit I was enraged by the fact that they had acted in a manner that had driven a girl to spit on them and show how much she detested his act.

This worked to my disadvantage, as I was even more angered by their unwillingness to take responsibility for their acts. They kept riding all around Jayanagar and after circling Jayanagar Shopping Complex twice they headed towards Cosmopolitan Club, I too went around and was by then pretty sure that they had learnt a valuable lesson and that they would not dare eve tease again. When they took a turn at the Cosmopolitan Club, I went a little faster than usual and was caught unawares by the gravel there. Due to this the front tyre of the bike skid on the grave and in the fall the mound on my left palm was scraped and I sustained a few more injuries on my knee and leg. This proved a costly lesson for me as it contributed to a knee pain that has ever since been a recurring sensation causing pain. Taking this as a valuable lesson, my advice to anyone who has an inclination to stand up against any social evil is that they have to gauge their abilities and limitations well and also accept the possibilities of long term risk if any detriment is caused to you because of their having stood up against any issue that they feel strongly for, in no event are they to be in a position where they would regret their having stood up for a good cause in retrospect. The elderly obstacle Elders are to be respected not only because they have been pillars of our past but also because they hold in them the experience to support right action in the present. Add to this their ability to make a sea change by merely showing disapproval to the aberrations from tradition that is being perpetuated by youngsters swayed by wild winds. Many a times I have gained the silent support of elders who have retired themselves to an enviable life that begins with the leisurely indulgence of scanning the newspaper once, followed by breakfast and then a round to a park and coffee in one of their favorite haunts. The afternoon siesta is a flavor that brings out the best in them. I was not aware of the immense pleasure derived from an afternoon nap till I too became addicted to the same. Coming back to siestas and elderly men, an elderly neighbor who stayed in the house opposite mine once walked up to me and struck a conversation with me. He began with a remark that renewed the vigor with which I attacked eve teasers. “Thanks to you, I am able to complete my afternoon nap!” A string of abuses was immediately appended to this remark against those juvenile delinquents who never failed to wake him from his much needed slumber with their constant blaring of horns and incessant revving of the accelerator to attract the girls who passed by. Add to this another indulgence of the girls of this college who had been habituated to the peace offered by these well shaded by lanes of a predominantly residential locality with little or no vehicular traffic and

had hence made it a habit to walk on the narrow lanes with little or no regard to the earlier non-existent traffic. This meant that they refused to give up their habit of strolling in leisure, the giggles and indulgent chirpy voices brought about a lot of mirth to these elders who watched them for a while before they smiled and went in for a siesta, but all these pleasant sounds were also being drowned in the mechanical revving of the cars and bikes. The screeching and halting of four wheelers and two wheelers after ripping towards the girls and wanting to impress them with their spectacular stunts and skill of control was akin to the chase and play that one would stand enthralled by in channels showing animals during their courtship times, if only to remind you about the complete absence of the inherent beauty and ethereal appeal that transfixed you to the antics that animals indulged in. With regret I add that this was not the case once when I was all set to tackle an eve teaser but was stopped from doing so by an elderly person. The futility of my actions and the impossibility of my getting an eve teaser to book is something that I shall ever hold this elderly person responsible for. One day I saw a guy chase two girls in a demeaning manner, he was in a car and was following the girls, the girls who were aware of this turned behind and began walking in the opposite direction. He was not put off by this and knowing that it was a one way lane he reversed the car and kept taking the car back with them. The girls changed their direction to get away from him and he promptly put the car in forward gear and followed them again. I called the Jayanagar police station and requested for some constables to be sent immediately and then took my bike and went up to the car and parked the bike right in front of the car. I was about to take him to task when an elderly man who was out on his morning walk asked me to let the car go. I asked him if he knew what had happened and informed him that I had called the police and if he could wait till the police came there. He was not keen on listening to anything that I had to say, he went on about how I was clearly in the wrong as I had come in the wrong side of a one way road. I kept trying to ask him to wait till the cops came but he was not in a mood to listen to me, he kept talking and even helped the eve teaser take his car and leave. I did not let him go, I asked him to wait till the cops came. By the time they came I informed him that he was a hardened eve teaser and had made good his escape only because of his intervention. He quickly retorted that he was only doing what he taught was right and went away.

Elderly people are to be respected not merely because of their age but more because of the wisdom that were inherent in them, thanks to the abundance of their experience.

Jayanagar Eve-Teaser Claims “I am a Police Officer’s Neighbor” by Prakruthi N. Banwasi It was a day that would find most of us toiling our sweat away, not for the likes of A. Rao. This person had all the time in the world to rip around in his swank car from one corner to another on NMKRV College road with the mandatory accompaniment of loud western music. The pile of work that had a hold on me still failed to keep me away from approaching these aberrations in society and request them to stop throwing culture to the roads and show some culture on the roads. It was with the wish of requesting him to not saturate his act of obvious indecency that I approached him, that too after watching his antics for 15 minutes plus. On meeting this chap with a ear-stud on his left ear and a whole world of attitude I gathered that he was „Waiting for a girl whom he had met on the same road the previous year and was hopeful of checking her out again.‟ It was then that I asked him to show his license to find out his name and address, he said that he did not have one and claimed that he was „the neighbor of a Mr. Sreenivasa, a police officer‟ in a way that made it clear that he was somehow exempted from the boring routine of carrying valid documents to drive a car. It was then that I asked him to kindly accompany me to the Jayanagar police station as I was sure that he was not a kid who ought to be let off with merely being reprimanding, not with this kind of attitude of defiance. In spite of my attempts I was unable to reach the police on the mobile and I did get into his car waiting to be taken to the cop station. It was then he asked me what authority I had to take him to the police station, I reminded him that I could take action as a public spirited individual and the primary offence of not holding a license while driving sufficed for me to lead him to the police station. He warned me of dire consequences and threatened me saying that I would find it to be very unpleasant in the end. I then told him that I assisted the police in matters concerning eve-teasing and was ready to face the consequences if I was at fault. He then took me near the police station and to his intense happiness found his neighbor, the police officer, right there. He ran to him and said something, I then walked up to this officer to explain what happened, but before I could do so he had nailed me down as an anti-social element and refused to listen to me and then ordered a constable to take me to the station and take action against me. Thankfully the station officers recognized me and were easily convinced by the attitude of this young chap that he was in the wrong, especially when he reminded them that he was the manager of the tent house which

never failed to provide materials free of cost to the police every year and that he had also contributed to the police station in many other ways, he kept saying that he was this officer‟s neighbor at least 10-15 times. The policeman sitting in front of him finally asked him out of disgust what authority did he derive from being a police officer‟s neighbor? Yet this police officer intervened again and gave me a warning and let this guy go scot free. Before I could request him to listen to me he was off. The police officer sitting in front of me was too dumbstruck to say anything. I told him that I was utterly demoralized and that I now wondered if it was worth it to take time off and risk getting such a thug to the station and get the wrong end of the stick. In an instant this police officer understood my predicament and asked a constable to get back the boy I had got there and took him and me to the inspector on duty. He explained that I had found this chap near NMKRV College and left us. The inspector heard both of us talk and realized that this boy had to be taken to task. He gave the boy a severe warning and asked him to call his parents and wait outside. I thanked him for doing so and left the place. Later when I narrated this incident to Suresh Heblikar he stated that in the end he was as thankful as I was that the thug got what he deserved. He then reminded me that it was because of such officers like that the spirit in me to continue to fight against this social menace stood undiluted. There is no other moral to be derived from this incident than the one of ensuring that we are not against the morals that defines our behavior on the roads.

Garbage There were enough instances where the eve teasers were not so naïve that it warranted them to be completely exonerated from suffering the consequences of their act but at times some of them were not so naïve that I could let them go scot free nor were they so hardened that they had to be handled by authorities. Creating a third category of eve teasers who had to be deterred from indulging in eve teasing again but who did not have to be trashed about for the act and deciding a proportionate punishment for them was among my first acts in a bid to understand the dimensions of eve teasing. After a good amount of thought I decided that the best way to tackle them is to negate the joy that they would get by eve teasing in a manner that will also make them realize that they were definitely in the wrong. Such utilization of Hedonistic Calculus would go a long way in aiding them to realize the gravity of their act without ostracizing them for their indulgence in an unreasonable manner. Hence I began to use an effective method to chase the intent to eve tease in eve teasers who fell in this category and aid them to stop indulging in harmful eve teasing. The method was simple as all I had to do was to throw their vehicle keys in the garbage bin or in the gutter beside the road and inform them that they could

take recourse to two choices, either they walk up to the cops and inform them about my act after which there would be a possibility that I myself might have to dip my hand into the garbage and take out the keys. The next alternative left to them would be to atone for their indulgence in harmful eve teasing by either retrieving the key from the garbage heap or take pains to procure the duplicate key from their homes. Here the purpose was to also make them realize that they could have fought back against the punishment but then they would be disgraced and taken to task first. This Catch 22 situation always had them in a dilemma, as the cops would definitely enquire about the whole circumstances and this would mean that their shameful indulgence in the act of eve teasing will first be made known to the cops and they would certainly be reprimanded for it or further action too might be taken against them. In the face of this dead option all they could do was to retrieve the key from the garbage heap. I am assured that this way of making them dig in garbage is the best way to remind them about their helplessness in taking me to task and also equate the shame they feel in dipping into the garbage with the shameful act of eve teasing. This method had worked many times and I am happy that I did not bring them to the notice of the authorities and make it miserable for them but in the same breath I was hopeful that they would think give a deep thought before indulging in eve teasing again.

Girls Welcome Attitude One day when I was taking classes I was called by my partner Dev to come out to the gate immediately. I thought it must have something to do with eve teasing and I was proved right. Dev then told me that he was observing two boys who were harassing two girls for quite some time and that he was cornering them from all sides and not giving them the remotest chance to escape. I immediately went back to the class and requested another teacher to engage the students and returned to the gate wanting to have a glimpse of these eve teasers. I wanted to ensure that I was not barking up the wrong tree so I waited to confirm that these two boys were indeed harassing the girls. Both Dev and me were standing at the gate for sometime without any progress. Then after a while we saw the two girls again walk towards us on the road, but the boys were nowhere in sight. I was hoping that the boys would turn up and try one of their stunts on these girls again and they would be proselytized into stopping this indulgence. That was when the girls were walking a mere two feet away from the gate where we stood and we could clearly hear what they were talking. If it was not for the fact that we

knew that the two guys were following them we would not have been able to gauge the context behind their conversation that led to an anti-climax of sorts. We clearly heard them say “Thirugbeedve, Yellhogthaare… nammahinde barle beeku, thaaalu…” (“Don‟t turn back! Where will they go? They have to follow us… wait!”) We were both shocked at first and then we laughed.

Short Stories

Check Mate
The water was sparkling clear. In this part of the dense forest left untainted by humanity the pristine purity of nature ruled supreme. The surface of the still river glistened with the rays of the afternoon sun. Add to this the mischievous ripples created by the playful fish, the kaleidoscopic effect was near ethereal. The birds, soaring majestically in the skies, were the only ones who could possibly savor this magical panorama. Yet the wish to delight in this magnificent view was marginalized by their alert but patient wait for a kill to satiate their hunger. (This magnificent view escaped them as the birds were absorbed by the need to satiate their hunger) The animals in the jungle were wondering around, trying to get a whiff of the welcome fragrance of the moist mud and the slight humidity in the air surrounding the river, to rush in, quench their thirst, sprawl around in the muddy surroundings and beat the heat. (The creatures of the jungle wondering around in the vicinity were on the quest of a whiff of the welcome fragrance of the moist mud and the slight humidity in the air surrounding the river.) The abundance of flora on all sides of the river, crowding in on it, made it impossible for the animals to spot it. Unguided by their sense of smell, it would have been an arduous task for the animals to find the river. After having their fill of fresh water, they basked in the shade on the banks of the river. It was on the moist banks of the western end of the river that a wild dog, panting grimly, neared an opening. As it‟s paw gained contact with the shallow water, shock waves sent the fish scurrying away from the shallow end. The males of this particular species of fish had a unique way of adding glamour to this dull afternoon in the midst of nowhere. A spectacle awaited by the inmates of the river, particularly the females of the same species of fish in search of a suitable mate. The mere presence of these ornate scales did little to aid them score, though. What gained prominence was the skill displayed by the males in firstly selecting a shallow spot in the river. The more difficult achievement was to ensure that such shallow spot be blessed with a ray of sunlight. Most difficult of all was what was then performed by the male fish. That of tilting it‟s body to an angle that would catch and reflect this gifted ray of sunlight. The singular impact created by the awesome threesome, i.e., the inherent silvery dazzles of the scales of the fish which increased by it‟s sway shining under the spotlight of the sun and the glow magnified blindingly due to the shallowness of the water, sufficed for the female fish decide on its suitor with little or no difficulty. It was more a statement of aesthetics than a display of prowess. One such male hopeful swimming around the river for a good thirty minutes was in search of a magical place to exhibit his scales. He had thought himself foolish, to have broken away from the shoal just to be different. With every passing minute, this belief was gaining prominence as he was heading nearer the banks of the river in search of shallow water. The veteran fish knew that the trick was to get a shallow spot in the middle of the river where sunlight was aplenty and thus they did not have to hurry with their performance. Eventually some female fish would come near and start the dance of love. Near the banks, this fish had cleverly overcome the first predicament, that of finding a shallow spot, but the thick cover of the trees made sunlight a difficult order. He might end up being the laughing stock of his friends later in the evening. Engulfed by these thoughts he wore a tense look, swam straight into a set of sleek shaped females coming towards him, and forgot to exchange pleasantries. To add insult to injury, this absent mindedness made them giggle and then snigger aloud.

Today was just not his day. He resigned himself to his fate and swam on, dejected and directionless. Hold your fins… He thought he saw a glimmer of sunlight highlighting the brown sand and swam excitedly towards the glint. It was, thank heavens, a clear patch of shallow water gleaming in the rays of the sun. It was perfect. That too… right in the middle of the tree shaded shallow water! He would run a packed show today, he thought. He surveyed the surroundings and then swam into the sunspot; the warmth of the sunlight engulfed him here. This made him a little nervous. To prepare himself better for the grand finale he tilted himself and prayed to the water God one last time. Then he began quivering his entire torso, he then tilted his body to an angle that perfectly reflected the sunlight and threw a dazzling kaleidoscope of light inside the water of the river. The cabaret that he began by skillfully quivering his body had the desired effect. The shine of his silvery scales was sparkling all around. He could easily perceive the reflection of the glitter in the waters until far. Today would positively create history, he thought to himself as he saw the same group of females approach him coyly. They looked dazzled by the beauty of this brilliance. They would be treated to a grand spectacle, he assured himself. He amplified his contortions and took in as much sunlight as possible. Viewed from above, one spot near the banks of the river, well within the cover of the trees was astoundingly radiant. The ethereal effect was a splendor for the watching eyes, those of the circling birds. The beauty of the whole act escaped the flying birds, the logic did not. This performer engrossed in the act of attracting the attention of the female, proved to be in the spotlight.

For, a watchful bird, awaiting such an attention seeking display, swooped down skillfully and in one swift move had him in its mouth, still wriggling as he flew away.
The dance of passion had now transmogrified itself to the struggle for self-preservation.

Short Stories
Human Creatures!!!
They all watched helplessly… …as the rude awakening to a tranquil dawn resulted from the incessant bleating of the birds. Birds that were savoring the silence of the lonely beach in their slumber. It look a few moments before reality seeped into their sleeping selves, yet in an instance adrenaline flowed freely and spread the terror of the impending atrocities that were bound to follow. A loss beyond imagination for them but just another day for the rest of the world. Another unfortunate link added to the unending chain of wrongs perpetuated on their lot.

There were just two men, just two men who walked towards the hundreds of birds as they exchanged hurried communications to decide on the immediate course of action. Nothing substantial could be thought of in the grip of panic. A frenzy of activity had us shaken up even worse. Sadly, though collectively stronger, they could not outnumber these two men.

The men were approaching them cautiously. They had to be cautious, for in the few minutes that they would spend on this island, they would have to spell out a tragic loss for the birds that the passing of years would fail

to heal. It was then that one bird, woken up by deep slumber, instinctively searched around to assure herself about the safety of her eggs. They were right below her, nestled comfortably. This taken care of, she then came alive to the surroundings and began voicing her concern about the commotion that she now heard. Suddenly she sighted the two men around thirty wings away from her. Shocked by their sight she sheared the atmosphere around her with her hysterical high pitched string of screams. For, these men were gathering the huge eggs of these birds in buckets.

This sudden shrill move did unnerve the two, but only for a second, then it had the most undesirable and adverse effect on them, for they changed direction and headed towards hers.

Each one of the birds could only cry out in uncontrolled screams as they saw them assault this bird with the prods that they held in their hands. She withstood the poking for a couple of times, knowing that the pain caused by the pricks of the prod would be nothing compared to what she had seen the other birds endure for the rest of their lifetimes after such similar incidents.

She held on beyond her capacity to endure pain in protecting her young ones, every red blot of blood that emerged a few moments after the prod wounded her frail body and spirit placed another stone of defeat in her. She withered in pain without budging an inch while cracking her voice and screaming continuously. Her lungs were exploding from inside and her body was being pierced from outside.

In the end, her frail body reacted involuntarily and unwittingly she was forced to step back a few paces and distance herself from her young ones. That was all the time that they wanted, they hurriedly reached out for the big well sized eggs that she was treasuring since the past few weeks and moved on to other victims.

In less than half an hour the two men headed back to their boat, their job done. Discussing in leisurely tones, the possible profits that the day‟s hard work would get them, among other banal aspects of their pathetic lives…

Today‟s victims were still in a state of utter shock, and for the rest of the birds, the knowledge that the heavens were kind to them today offered a very small sigh of relief, for this nightmare, that showed no signs of ceasing, would recur every time the sun rose through out the breeding season for the rest of their lives.

Worst of all, there was nothing that they could do to fight back and stand up for their families and themselves. To weep and scream out while they watched was all that their cognitive elements could express. They were left wishing in vain for the miracle that never came, one that would somehow instill some trace of humanity in these inhuman creatures whose visits were worse then the demon of death for these birds, for they were made to suffer a living hell.

Our wings flapped hurriedly as they soared up in the skies to offer their final good-byes with helpless pleas, oblivious to any stance of pain. They flew as close to the boat as they dared to, and followed it as far as they

could. Trying to prolong the last glimpses that they got of their young ones. Another last look as they were being led by their captives to their unenviable fate.

They all continued to watch helplessly... (Instances of humans preying on the eggs of birds, dwelling in neighboring uninhabited islands, every day, are not uncommon.)

Short Stories
Granny's Tale
"Without pickles I will not eat curd rice." (I could have done without the pickle too but then I heard an aunt say, “Get the pickle, he never eats curd rice without a pickle.” So I just decided to pick up a fuss and was kind of surprised when it blew up to such great proportions…) I'd said this to my grandma 20 years ago. She had woken up a grocer at midnight to cater to my childish whim. Mention about this adventure repeatedly propped up when I was the cynosure in a conversation. She had been admitted to the hospital now. The point is that a granny is twice a mother to her grandchild. Mine was no exception. Every time I goofed up and was reprimanded sternly for the done mischief, I knew that I just had to wail a little and act as if I was choking and she would bring the whole house down. She would then accuse mom, grandpa and all else of being blind to my suffocation. That always worked. I still do not feel any guilt for having used her genuine concern as an easy means of escape. She has never changed and I can say with blind faith (rare nowadays) that she never will. It pained me to hear that she was admitted in the ICU – for the third time in two years. Her weak heart and high BP were giving her a tough time. "Namaskara Ajji, how are you feeling now?" begot "Did you have lunch? What did you have?” as always. I assured her that I had had lunch just then and on her request, I recounted the entire menu. That was her way of checking if we really had lunch or were bluffing our way through. We used to be caught here if we had not eaten. She sat up with extreme effort. As the intern tried to place the air pipe in her nose, she giggled. Air gushing out of it tickled her. Her smiling face made us so happy. The doctor too was transfixed by her giggling and stood by wantonly. He procrastinated his having to attend other patients, not wanting to miss the smiles on her face. We were all touched by the childish way in which she kept giggling and explained the sensation to us.

When she it was placed in properly, to him she said, "Vadave Hakthalla- Arati Etti" (Now that the ornament is placed you can take an arati) then she felt fatigue and was laid back to sleep. I noticed that the IV tube had stopped dripping due to the shift. She said in spasms - "Talking of Arathi's… Did the Ganesha pooja go well today?”and then added, "Did Ajja read all the stories?” The IV tube was not at all functioning. "My hair is all messed.” she uttered and closed her eyes. I was holding her hand near the elbow all along. I was happy to feel her warmth, something that I had grown up with and had thankfully cherished all along. Not wanting to disturb this I called the doctor who came and set the IV right. She was now quite at peace with the world, for she said "Ganesha Habba, Yellarigy olleyadagali.” (It's Ganesha Chatruthi, let good befall all!) and drowsily turned her eyes towards me. I looked at her and was drawn into a reverie... I was thinking about the amount of love and care that I had treasured from her. I wished to think that of all her grandchildren she was especially affectionate towards me due to my frailty at birth and the fact that it was she who had nursed me back to life. "You will fall asleep - I will not allow you to sleep with him. He will sleep with me- I'll take care of him.” She had authoritatively told my mother once when I was ill. Each time I coughed that night I felt her hand on my head comforting me. She would make Kashaya (Medicinal Syrup) whenever I was in deep pain, without any complaint she would.... She shook me from my reverie when she muttered something. I asked her to repeat what she said. She said, "Tell me, are you my grandson? I can't remember, are you?”

You know you are Asian when...
You know you are Asian when... * When you tell your parents you got 98%, and they ask you what happened to the other 2%. * There is a sale on any item, you buy 100 of them. * You make tea in a saucepan. * You never buy bin bags, but use your saved grocery bags for it. * You put your clothes in suitcases instead of wardrobes. * You have a 'Singer Brother' sewing machine at home. * Your mother has a minor disagreement with her sister and doesn't talk to her for ten years. * You call an older person you've never met before "uncle". * You hide everything from your parents.

* Your mother does everything for you if you are male. * You do all the housework and cooking if you are female. * Your relatives alone could populate a small city. * Everyone is a family friend. * Everyone always called you for help on homework. * You study law, medicine or engineering at university. * You were thick so you studied computer science or business instead. * You know no one who has studied music. * You went to a university as far away from home as possible. * You still came back home to live with your parents after you had finished. * Your best friend got married at the age of 18. * You like the meat well done. * You eat onions with everything. * You use chilli sauce instead of tomato ketchup. * You fight over who pays the dinner bill. * You say you hate Indian films/songs but secretly watch/hear them. * You avoid public places when with a member of the opposite sex, especially if there is an acquaintance within a 250 miles radius. * You always say "open the light" instead of "turn the light on". * You secure your baggage with a rope. * You're walking out of customs with your trolley at the airport and you see all twenty-five members of your family who have come to pick you up. * You get very upset when airlines refuse to accept your luggage which is just 80 lbs overweight. * You go back to your parents' country and people treat you like a member of the royal family. * You ask your dad a simple question and he tells you story of how he had to walk miles barefoot just to get to school. * Your Dad drives a Nissan. * You're rich so he drives a Mercedes. * You are ALWAYS taking off and putting on your shoes wherever you go.

* When you were little you always wondered why your English friends waited until after breakfast to brush their teeth when you did it first thing in the morning. * To your English friends, oil is used purely for cooking and not as a grooming aid. * Your parents have nicknames but only because people they work with just stop when trying to read their names. * You have annoying nicknames like Chotu or Chicku. * Your parents call all your friends "Beta" (son/daughter). * Your mother measures wealth in gold and diamonds. * Your parents drink 3 cups of tea a day. * Your parents compare you to all of their friends' kids. * At least once a week your mom says, "I want to go to India/Pakistan". * No one ever seems to call ahead of time to say they are coming over for a visit. * Your parents worry what other people will think if you're not going to be a doctor/ engineer. * You're parent's always say while shopping abroad, "It's cheaper in India/Pakistan".

An eve-teasing incident in front of me
I sent the narration of this incident to Blank Noise yesterday. This incident happened more than three years back while I was traveling in a public transport city bus in Navi Mumbai. And, I'm posting the same here now:

I took a bus from my residence in Sector 29 of Vashi. I was standing and a guy was standing beside me and there were two girls standing on the opposite side of the aisle. The guy was around 25-26 years at that time I guess. And I was 22. Then, after a few stops, that guy slowly went on the other side, right between the two girls even when there was a lot of space on this side. No one except me apparently noticed this.

Slowly, he tried to hold one of the pipes in the bus to 'support himself' where he actually was trying to touch the hand of one of the girls. But, the girl soon became

aware of this and she removed her hand from there. After some time, that guy brought his hand down and started trying to 'inadvertently' touch the other girl on and around her thighs. The girl was unaware of this.

But, I told him loudly, 'Why do you stand there in the narrow space between two girls when there is enough space over this side and I've been seeing you for quite some time that you're trying to touch this girl on her hand and this girl on thigh.' The two girls and a few passengers around heard them and the guy started defending himself. He in fact argued, 'Is ladkiya kuch nahi bol rahi hain to tu kyu bol raha hain. Maine kuch nahi kiya'*. I replied that they even aren't aware of it. I kept on making him feel ashamed. Eventually, he got down at the next bus-stop. Note 1: You can originally find it here on the Blank Noise Guy blog. Note 2: *Translation: 'If the girl isn't saying a thing, why are you? I didn't do anything.'

comment said...

Hats off to you. When I was in college once in a Delhi bus, a

young boy was asleep next to me and let his head roll on my shoulder repeatedly, I moved a bit, but there wasn't much place to move. A middle aged sardarjee shook the boy and said, "Zara hosh mein! Sir ko sambhalo!" (Behave yourself, Wake up and watch where your head is going). I still remember the incident but never thanked him or expressed my gratitude. Same way these girls must have been grateful but one is generally not able to react when these things happen. I wish more people start reacting, that is the only way to end this kind of harassment.

WHAT IS EVE TEASING?
LOOKING STARING WHISTLING STARING AT BREASTS TALKING TO BREASTS RATING PASSING COMMENTS SINGING SONGS 8 (15%) 35 (66%) 40 (75%) 39 (73%) 39 (73%) 24 (45%) 43 (81%) 33 (62%)

RUBBING GROPING 'ACCIDENTALLY' TOUCHING BRUSHING FLASHING BLOWING KISSES MAKING KISSING SOUND STALKING DASHING TICKLING FINGERING MASTURBATING ADJUUSTING REAR VIEW MIRROR UNSOLICITED CONVERSATION UNSOLICITED PHOTOGRAPHY SPITTING WINKING VEHICLES( CARS/ AUTOS/ CYCLES/ BIKES) PURPOSELY DASHING VEHICLES( CARS/ AUTOS/ CYCLES/ BIKES) PURPOSELY HONKING VEHICLES( CARS/ AUTOS/ CYCLES/ BIKES) PURPOSELY FOLLOWING OTHER/

43 (81%) 38 (71%) 36 (67%) 41 (77%) 36 (67%) 38 (71%) 38 (71%) 37 (69%) 35 (66%) 36 (67%) 37 (69%) 38 (71%) 26 (49%) 25 (47%) 38 (71%) 27 (50%) 38 (71%) 34 (64%) 37 (69%) 40 (75%) 8 (15%)

EXPERIENCED SEXUAL HARASSMENT , 'EVE TEASING' IN THE FOLLOWING:
school uniform capris churidar salwar trousers shorts jeans burkha dupatta sari long full sleeve kameez short full sleeve kameez 11 (47%) 6 (26%) 8 (34%) 9 (39%) 7 (30%) 5 (21%) 12 (52%) 2 (8%) 6 (26%) 5 (21%) 5 (21%) 4 (17%) long sleeve t shirt short sleeve t shirt sleevess shirt noodle strap tee tube top jacket blazer ghagra long skirt medium length skirt short skirt swim suit ( one piece) 6 (26%) 6 (26%) 5 (21%) 4 (17%) 3 (13%) 6 (26%) 3 (13%) 3 (13%) 7 (30%) 5 (21%) 7 (30%) 2 (8%)

swim suit ( burkhini) bikini red lipstick pink lipstick no lipstick open hair oiled hair bald head school socks

1 (4%) 4 (17%) 4 (17%) 4 (17%) 10 (43%) 9 (39%) 3 (13%) 1 (4%) 6 (26%)

stockings bare feet with bangles with finger rings with gloves with a hat with toe rings work uniform kaftan

3 (13%) 5 (21%) 5 (21%) 5 (21%) 4 (17%) 5 (21%) 4 (17%) 5 (21%) 3 (13%)

IMAGE WORD MEANING

When a tomato is more than just a tasty summer fruit
In India, catcallers taunt women by referring to them as food. But Jasmeen Patheja, founder of the Blank Noise Project, is no ordinary tomato.
When Jasmeen Patheja moved to Bangalore, India, for college, she was frustrated to discover that nearly every time she walked alone at night, she got harassed. But instead of simply enduring it or avoiding it by staying inside, she decided to fight back. Patheja, an artist, founded the Blank Noise Project (previously covered here), an advocacy group dedicated to raising awareness about sexual harassment. In order to understand the project, you have to know a bit about Indian catcalling. First, guys who harass women are known, jokingly, as “eve teasers.” (One of Patheja‟s goals is to get these “teasers” offenses to be taken more seriously.) Second, food items are popular sexual taunts against women. According to the Christian Science Monitor, women are often called things like mirchi (chili) and tamatar (tomatoes). That‟s why many of the posters put out by Blank Noise focus on food — including one with bright colors of foods next to descriptions of what they actually are. Featured dishes include things like bananas and buttered chicken and aloo, a potato dish whose caption reads, “The potato (Solanum tuberosum) is a perennial plant of the Solanaceae, or nightshade, family, commonly grown for its starchy tuber.” In other words, a potato is a vegetable. Not a woman. But Patheja‟s efforts are not limited to tubers. She‟s also collecting outfits from women that they were wearing when they were harassed, which she hopes to display to dispel the idea that women were “asking for it” because of their clothing. (It‟s an interesting idea, but could backfire if some of the clothing actually could be considered provocative — thus giving an excuse to shift blame away from the harassers and back onto the women.) Other groups in India are also working to create a more comfortable environment for Indian women. One such group, Jagori, conducted safety audits of city neighborhoods and set up a hot line that women can call to report or learn more about sexual harassment. Self-defense classes are becoming more popular, and a group of graduate students working for the Space and Gender Project in Mumbai recently helped railroad officials try to figure out how to make train stations less threatening for women.

Unfortunately, as the Monitor points out, protesting sexual harassment inIndia can still be deadly (one woman was shot when she tried to protect her daughter-in-law), and much of the burden of prevention falls on the women themselves, not on the men doing the harassing. But still, at least some people are speaking out.

MIRCHI? SAMOSA? BUTTERFLY? LOLITA? TAMATA R( TOMATOES)? LASSUN (GARLIC)? MALAI( CREAM)? What did you just hear? What made you say " what?!! me??"
http://blog.blanknoise.org/2007/08/blog-post.html 'Eve Teasing' Food Chart. Excerpt 1 from Tales of Street Love and Lust Aam ras -Aam Ras/Keri No Ras mango pulp of Gujarat origin. It is prepared with two kinds of mangoes Kesar and Haphoos (Alphonso). Aloo- (hindi) potato The potato (Solanum tuberosum) is a perennial plant of the Solanaceae, or nightshade, family, commonly grown for its starchy tuber. Nutritionally, potatoes are best known for their carbohydrate content (approximately 26 grams in a medium potato). Starch is the predominant form of carbohydrate found in potatoes Apple-The apple is the pomaceous fruit of the apple tree, species Malus domestica in the rose family Rosaceae. It is one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits. Apples contain Vitamin C as well as a host of other antioxidant compounds, which may reduce the risk of cancer by preventing DNA damage 'bajji'/pakoda-Indian evening snack. Deep fried with gram flour coating. The bajji/ pakoda could contain onions/ potatoes/ pumkin cham cham- Bengali (east Indian) sweet. Sweet, spongy and soft patties made from milk, flavored with saffron, in a sugar syrup. butter chicken/ murgh makhani is North Indian dish popular in countries all over the world that have a tradition of Indian restaurants. Butter chicken is usually served with naan, roti, parathas or steamed rice. Bhindi : ( Hindi) vegetable. also known as ochra or lady's finger. Chatpati Papri- Indian street food. Chatpati- (Hindi) adjective for a combination of sweet sour and spicey. Papri- crispy fried dough wafers made from flour and ghee. Chaat (Hindi: , Urdu: ‫ )چاٹ‬is a word used across India, Pakistan and the rest of South Asia to refer to small plates

of savory snacks, typically served at the side of the road from stalls or carts. Most chaat originated in North India, but

they are now eaten across the country. Papri Chaat the papris are served with potatoes, chilis, yoghurt and tamarind chutney. Coffee widely consumed beverage prepared from the roasted seeds—commonly called "beans"—of the coffee plant. Coffee was first consumed as early as the 9th century, when it appeared in the highlands of Ethiopia chicken fry fried chicken. deep fried tender chicken. chaashni- sugar syrup. prepare chaashni by putting sugar in boiling water and stirring it until a thick consistent solution is attained Doodh factory : doodh- milk ( hindi) is an opaque white liquid produced by the mammary glands of female mammals (including monotremes) The exact components of raw milk varies by species, but it contains significant amounts of saturated fat, protein and calcium as well as vitamin C. Unfortunately the vitamin C is destroyed by the heat in pasteurization process Egg: oval shaped with white shell. source- chicken. Contains yellow yolk and transparent fluid. hari mirchi green chilli ( hindi) hot vegetable used in India, Thai, Indonesian,Mexican cooking.Available fresh, dried, powdered, flaked, in oil, in sauce, bottled and pickled. It gives spiciness to all the vegetables. Rich source of vitamin C. Also used to ward off evil spirit. Jalebi -sweet commonly sold in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. made from deep-fried, syrup-soaked batter and shaped into a large, spiral shape. Jalebis are mostly bright orange in colour but are also available in white. It can be served dripping warm. Juice drink made from fruits. rich in vitamins. popular indian juice- orange, pomegranate, pineapple, apple, lemon, watermelon, carrot Kaai- vegetable (tamil) Lassun (hindi) garlic :is a species in the onion family Alliaceae. Garlic, like onion, contains compounds that inhibit lipoxygenase and cyclooxygenase, kela (hindi) banana :cultivated throughout the Tropics. Bananas are a valuable source of Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, and potassium. Lollypop is a candy pop/ suckers. hard sweet sugar candies with a stick. type: Dum Dum , Tootsie Pop, Blow Pop21. makhan ki tikiya: butter - the fatty portion of milk, separating as a soft whitish or yellowish solid when milk or cream is agitated or churned. tikiya (Hindi) - Roughly translated as 'cutlet': 1706, from Fr. côtelette, from O.Fr. costelette "little rib," from coste "rib, side," from L. costa (see coast), infl. by Eng. cut. Malai ("cream"): Rich portion of milk which rises to the

surface when the liquid is allowed to stand unless homogenised. Maavinkai (Mango in Kannada): The fruit of a tropical tree, Mangifera indica, of the cashew family, eaten ripe, or preserved or pickled. 'Mirchi' - ("spice"): Any of a class of pungent or aromatic substances of vegetable origin, as pepper, cinnamon, or cloves, used as seasoning, preservatives, etc. Mishti Doi:Mishti ("sweet" in Bengali) - Producing the one of the four basic taste sensations that is not bitter, sour, or salt. Doi ("yoghurt" in Bengali) - A prepared food having the consistency of custard, made from milk curdled by the action of cultures. Masala Dosa: South Indian crepe lightly cooked with a filling of potatoes, fried onions and spices. Mosambi: Lemon tree having fruit with a somewhat insipid sweetish pulp. Mother dairy: Mother Dairy - Delhi was set up in 1974 under the Operation Flood Programme. It is now a subsidiary company of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). Narial ("Coconut") - The edible white flesh of the coconut, often shredded and used in food and confections or for the extraction of coconut oil. Narangi/ oranges: Any white-flowered, evergreen citrus trees of the genus Citrus, bearing this fruit, as C. aurantium (bitter orange, Seville orange, or sour orange) and C. sinensis (sweet orange), cultivated in warm countries. NIMBE KAAYI (means nimbu/lemon) nimbe hanu (lemon): The yellowish, acid fruit of a subtropical citrus tree, Citrus limon. Onions/ pyaaz: A plant, Allium cepa, of the amaryllis family. Pacha Manga: (Malyalam) raw mango. Also known as kairi. sour tasting summer fruit. Can be eaten in salad, or with salt and pepper. Also used to make pickle/ achar. Pushnikaa (pumpkin), kaddu: 1647, alteration of pumpion "melon, pumpkin" (1545), from M.Fr. pompon, from L. peponem (nom. pepo) "melon," from Gk. pepon "melon," probably originally "cooked by the sun, ripe," from peptein "to cook." Pumpkin-pie is recorded from 1654. Pumpkin-head, Amer.Eng. colloquial for "person with hair cut short all around" is recorded from 1781. Pakaa Bel : Egg-shaped tropical fruit of certain passionflower

vines; used for sherbets and confectionery and drinks. Panjamittaai (Cotton Candy): Czech: cukrová vata, Danish: sukkervat, Dutch: gesponnen suiker, Estonian: suhkruvatt, Finnish: hattara, French: barbe à papa, German: die Zuckerwatte, Greek: μαλλί της γριάς Rasberry: Any of various shrubby, usually prickly plants of the genus Rubus in the rose family, such as R. idaeus var. strigosus of eastern North America and R. idaeus of Europe, that bear edible fruit. Rass malai: Rasmalai originated somewhere in the coastal parts of the Indian state of Orissa. Sometimes shown as Rassmalai or Ras Malai. Rasgulla: A dessert from Orissa and Bengal consisting of balls of unripened cheese or cottage cheese (chenna) soaked in a syrup. Samosa: popular South Asian snack. Triangular shape. Deep fried. Crispy dough crust with potato stuffing. Son papri : Indian sweet prepared with gram flour. popularly sold at KC Das takkaali, tomato, tamatar : The tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) is a plant in the Solanaceae or nightshade family. Red pulpy fruit with seeds. Rich in vitamin C and A Teekhi chaat: spicey chaat chaat- indian street food teekhi- spicey ( hindi) Topa kool : (bengali) plum. used to make chutney/ sauce. Tadka : Indian cooking. consists of onions, spices, curry leaves, green chili, tomatoes. The sauted ingredients are added to any Indian cooking. Watermelons: green and red citrus food. produced in Japan in cube size , rest of world in a spherical shape. Excellent source of vitamin C and vitamin A, with one serving containing 14.59 mg of vitamin C and 556.32 IU of vitamin A. Watermelon also provides significant amounts of vitamin B6 and vitamin B1

I DID NOT IGNORE IT
It was a regular evening, I was out for my regular walk and what happened to me was also very very regular, it's just most of us choose to I G N O R E and forget, yes I am talking about eve teasing. The damn incident took place near a crowded shopping center, I was walking and he came forward and tried to grab my boob. I stopped him and grabbed his hand , at this he said " ohh sorry" and started

running. I ran after him but damn my stupid slippers betrayed me and I slipped. I shouted at top of my lungs but hell all in vein. Chalo, I didn't ignore like most of the girls do and I am somewhat proud of myself for that. What fucking annoying me is that the place was really crowded and nobody cared to give a damn to what was happening there. I would have definitely beaten that bastard black and blue if those MEN had helped a bit . But damn they were busy watching Tamasha. Guys this is one of the reasons why we girls choose to I G N N O R E because people just enjoy watching Tamasha and simply don't believe in taking action. I would have taught that bastard lesson of his life if I had I got little help from those bloody men. But whatever that bastard knows now that it is not easy to get away with thing like that. There are some females like me who have courage to react and beat the hell out of bastards like him. Now I have learnt , Need to get rid of those slippery chapplas and wear nice running shoes when out. Keep pepper spray with me.

words of love:
1. 2. 3. 4. chammiya gudiya (doll) 'gullabbo' ( miss rose) 'sundari' (gorgeous) 5. 6. 7. 8. laila Juliet baby doll sweety 9. 'ms. busty' 10. baby/ bebe 11. sweetheart 12. darling

13. jaan (life) 14. chhokri ('girl' in vernacular slang i guess) 15. jaaneman( the love of my life) 16. phuljhari (firecracker) 17. Rani (queen) 18. Chhammak Chhallo 19. mallika (queen) 20. Bijli (lightening) 21. 'Bomb' 22. 'Item' 23. 'Soodu' 24. piece 25. bollySakkat,(super sexy) 26. sexy 27. GORI ( fair skinned) 28. ummmmmmmm! 29. Flower 30. Suzie 31. Lilly 32. taj mahal ( monument) 33. Photaka( fire craker) 34. mike( another very popular word in kolkata for breasts) 35. Headlights 36. rose 37. Yummy 38. Sexaaay

39. Chasmeesh.... 40. pussy 41. Veena ( musical instrument) 42. Matka ( earthen pot) 43. khekda ( which in marathi means crab) 44. horn 45. lota (spinning top) 46. Tennis balls 47. Footballs 48. katori (bowl?) 49. CHIKNI MAST ( white exciting thing) 50. Scooby doo 51. Elephant 52. tortoise 53. sun silk 54. Malldaar (the jerk said this one looking at my boobs) 55. DAGAAR - a veryyy veryyyy cheap Kannada word which means 'cheap whore'.... usually they would say this when I would stare back at them with anger or scold them.... this word used to make me furious!!

56. Lal chhaddi" (red stick) 57. Hot 58. Kutri 59. kali( dark skin woman) 60. nagin(snake) 61. "Baby 62. "Sweetie" 63. "Lovely" 64. "Darling" 65. FIGURE - How could I forget this.... the most common word you here on the roads of Bangalore 66. DOVE - They pronounce it as DAWUU(I dont think u can guess how they say it unless u live in Bangalore). In their lingo its supposed to mean 'beloved'!!! 67. mast- exciting 68. cheez- thing 69. darling (accompanied by kissing noises 70. chhokri ('girl' in vernacular slang i guess) 71. maal (goods) 72. jaan( life) 73. Maskali

‘Khap’ bans jeans, mobile phones for girls in Uttar Pradesh village

Bhenswal (Uttar Pradesh), Jan 18 (ANI): A „khap‟ or self-styled caste council in Bhenswal village of Uttar Pradesh‟s Muzaffarnagar district has given orders to ban girls from wearing jeans and using mobile phones, as they claim it invites unwanted attention for girls. The Khap panchayat led by Battisa Khap Council head Baba Suraj passed the diktat which claimed that wearing jeans had a “bad effect” on young women and eve-teasing incidents had increased due to their objectionable clothes”. The panchayat also formed a five-member women committee to implement the ban. “We have formed an all-woman team to curb this and would make the girls understand this issue. And we would also try to make them understand,” said Baba Suraj. He further said that in case a girl is found flouting the new diktats, she would be given a warning and if despite that she continues the „objectionable behaviour‟, then she would not be allowed to go out from her house. However, college students said such diktats are only for village women to follow while the girls in the city do not have any such rules. “Nowadays it is a modern society and who can stop it? People like us cannot stop it. We can only bind ourselves. But we cannot bind people in the cities. Girls work there in fields like hotel management and they have to wear skirts, and we should stop them also, and even airhostesses also wear mini-skirts and thus they should be asked to wear sarees or suits (Ethnic attire),” said Ichha.

Despite the law, such incidents of curbing women‟s freedom are commonplace, especially in the remote villages of states such as Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. (ANI)
Three girl students create ruckus at Indore college

Bhopal, Nov 13 (IANS) At least three students of a girl‟s college in Indore were arrested Friday for misbehaving with their principal who fainted and had to be hospitalised, police said. The girls belong to the Akhil Bharatiya Vidhyarthi Parishad (ABVP the Bharatiya Janata Party‟s student wing) to which those accused in the Professor Sabharwal murder case of Ujjain belonged. “The girls, of New Government Girls Degree College, discuss the issue of eve-teasing in the college. More than them went to the principal Manjula Choube‟s room and immediate action against the culprits,” an eyewitness told wanted to a dozen of demanded the police.

They shouted at the principal and allegedly threatened her. The principal fainted and was taken to hospital. “Her condition is said to be stable,” said Shailendra Singh Chauhan, a senior police official. The three girls were later released on bond by a local Indore court. “Some girls were very aggressive while discussing the instances of eve teasing following which the principal fainted,” Chauhan said.
Kanpur college girls oppose dress code in campus

Kanpur, June 23 (ANI): The controversial ban of college authorities prohibiting girls to wear jeans to prevent incidents of eve-teasing has triggered furious reaction from college girls here. College girls consider the decision deprives them of their basic freedom to wear something like „jeans‟, is unreasonable.

“The dress code which has been implemented in the colleges is totally wrong. We are not wearing anything wrong. Moreover, we don‟t belong to any primary school who need to be told what to wear and what not to. In addition to this, there is a ban on the mobile phones which I think is also totally wrong if we do not have mobiles with us how will be we able to inform our parents about our whereabouts?,” said Twisha. Four colleges, affiliated with Kanpur University, have prohibited their students from wearing jeans. The authorities decided to take the step after receiving several complaints of eve-teasing that were occurring just outside the college gate. Meanwhile, the district administration has welcomed the decision. “The universities have implemented this decision. It is right that there should be a dress code in the schools and colleges and if the universities think that by implementing this step discipline in the colleges will improve, we welcome this decision,” said Anil Kumar Sagar, District Magistrate of Kanpur. With both supporters and the opponents equally vociferous the dress code controversy is there to stay. (ANI)

Dress code in colleges to stop eve-teasing draws flak

Kanpur, June 11 (IANS) Instead of banning jeans on college campuses why not train girls in martial arts and empower them to check eve-teasing, suggested a student Thursday as the decision by four women colleges in this Uttar Pradesh district prohibiting western outfits drew strong criticism. To keep the menace of eve-teasing at bay, the Acharya Narendra Deo College, Dayanand Girls Degree College, Sen Balika College and Johari Devi Degree College in Kanpur have banned students from wearing jeans, tight tops, sleeveless blouses and tight-fitting clothes on the campus Tulika Saxena, a B.Sc student of Dayanand college, finds the decision “strange”. The colleges, she said, can offer “martial arts training programmes” for girl students so that they can defend themselves and “counter roadside eve-teasing”. “It would be much better if the college authorities sit down with police and other officials to formulate a strategy to check the menace,” Saxena said . Neelam Chaturvedi, who works with women‟s rights group Sakhi Kendra, says: “The move by the colleges is totally irrational”. “It appears that college authorities feel that eve-teasers only target girls wearing jeans. I can narrate umpteen incidents in which boys misbehaved with girls wearing salwar kameez,” Chaturvedi told IANS. Terming the decision by the college authorities as “illogical”, Deepshikha Dubey, a second year graduate student of the Dayanand college, said: “Jeans are the most common outfit worn by college

students, particularly because unlike other clothes you need not wash it after every use.” Majority of the college students who come from other parts of the state and stay away from their homes prefer wearing jeans and Tshirts, as they don‟t have to bother about their maintenance, she said, adding that the college authorities‟ move to ban jeans cannot be justified under any circumstance. Many students up in arms against the decision say if the college authorities were so much serious about checking eve-teasing incidents, they should have taken help from police and other security authorities.
Jeans prohibited on Kanpur college campuses (Lead)

Lucknow, June 9 (IANS) Four Kanpur colleges have banned students from wearing jeans, saying it will keep eve-teasing in check. Students are livid about the decision. Dayanand Degree College (DDC), Acahrya Narendra Dev College (ANDC), Sen Balika College (SBC) and Johari Degree College (JDC) all affiliated with Kanpur University - have prohibited their students from wearing jeans after a recent meeting. “When college gets over, boys literally throng the gates. They often indulge in uncouth behaviour, particularly towards those girls wearing body-hugging jeans. It‟s a routine affair here,” DDC principal Meeta Jamal told IANS on telephone. The students are angry about this decision. “The decision taken by the college authorities is illogical. If they want to check eve-teasing, they must approach the police,” said Shweta Chaturvedi, a DDC student of B.Sc.

Richa Sharma, another student, echoed similar sentiments. “Wearing jeans is common among college students. I can understand the ban against mini skirts and short tops, but why jeans?” The authorities decided to ban their students from wearing jeans after receiving several complaints of eve-teasing that were occurring just outside the college gate. With this in mind, the college authorities today (Tuesday) issued a notice that has been displayed on the notice boards of all the departments. A dress code for students is what is next on the agenda for the college authorities. “Soon there will be a dress code for the students after which they will not have to „waste time‟ selecting their clothes” said Jamal.

Indian Girls.... Teasing Dress Code...
Despite traditions and religious believes... The world heading towards modernisation and adopting new dress codes in their life styles keep considering faith away .. particularly in teenagers.. [[ almost in all religions. ]] Women organizations are stick on the points like Womens equality rights in society and advancement, improvment of women life style. In the male dominant society, crime, molestation rate increasing day by day towards women. Our dress code provoke opposite and this should be avoided?? Does the dress code really makes a difference - or not even a difference - AT LEAST reduce the number of crimes against women????
In the recent past there has been talk about enforcing a dress code for college girls. In fact, some colleges in Kanpur, Hyderabad and Lucknow have already done so. The college authorities banned jeans, sleeveless blouses and even high heels after receiving several complaints of eve-teasing that were occurring just outside the college gate. The reason they stated for taking this step is that they think that western outfits make women more vulnerable to eve teasing. Like many students who protested against this decision, I too found the idea ridiculous. First of all I'd like to tell those people who are under the above misconception that girls who wear Salwars or Sarees too have been victims of eve-teasing. I don't remember me or my friends ever

dressing provocatively but I can state umpteen cases where we faced indecent behaviour from men on the roads. Vulgarity is in the mind so even the girls wearing right attire can attract wrong attention. I accept the fact that, what women wear does matter. If a woman wears a daring outfit, she will arouse attention even in the most liberal surroundings, forget the traditional ones. But the restrictions that have been put on women are outrageous. Instead of punishing the wrongdoers the ignorant heads of the institution are trying to impose a dress code on girls stating safety as the highly unacceptable excuse. If this be the case then how do they explain the fact that though women in the west are less conservative when it comes to clothes but still cases of eveteasing or crime against women are far less there as compared to here? If dressing in denims or tight tops or wearing high heels be a reason for women getting abused then, it's a big shame on the Indian guys that they simply can't control their libido when they see women in these perfectly decent outfits. If these loose-morale men can't restrain their carnal hunger, it's their fault but the authorities instead of trying to round up these brutes are attacking girls' freedom at a futile attempt to curb women-harassment. How unfortunate isn't it... that the offenders are getting away scot free and the victims i.e us are getting punished instead, what's our crime? we are girls and unfortunately the better looking sex. That's fair enough? oh but I forgot from when have things ever been fair for the fair sex? Won't it be a much more effective way of dealing with the problem if the college authorities sit down with police and other officials to formulate a strategy to check the menace e.g. they could position policemen in front of the college to keep the goons at bay. Let us not live under the illusion that dress codes will lessen the existing violence. Perverts will always be around. If the college authorities are indeed so concerned about the safety of women why not organize classes to teach the girls martial arts to save their skin. I admit college is an academic institution and students should exercise a bit of thoughtfulness while putting on clothes for college. But why should this rule be confined only to the girls? Personally speaking in my college, I haven't come across a single vulgarly clad girl but I have come across guys who come to college wearing clothes appearing as if they have come rite out of a disco and have headed straight for college. Some of them do not even bother to button up their shirts and the worst of all, I have even seen guys wearing extremely low jeans exposing their underwear (I don't know what they are trying to become, a twisted version of Hrithik Roshan "Macroman"),trust me it really wasn't a very attractive sight. If this is another of those attempts made by guys to look dashing or cool I'd like to inform them that they have miserably failed this time too and kindly don't cause sight pollution. I'd like to conclude by saying that such strict dress codes are extremely unnecessary and implementation of those would do nothing to check eve-teasing. So. it's enough that the colleges issue a notice requesting students to wear decent and presentable clothes while coming to college. I am sure as responsible and sensible adults they would comply by it. **********************************************************************************

Stop TEASING!!!
“Eve-teasing”, the euphemistic term used for public or street sexual harassment of women by men, is one of the most pressing problems faced by our country today. May it be in the political scenario, colleges, workplaces, movie theatres or just anywhere, this has become an outrageous act of disrespect shown towards women. Street harassment ranges in form; from verbal abuse or sexually suggestive remarks to brushing of body in public places, catcalls, to outright groping. Almost every girl in India is a victim of eve-teasing. So is the situation that its almost like a disease. “Hi darling," says a leering man brushing past a lady, his outstretched hand inches from her chest. Before she can respond, he disappears into the crowd. The pivotal point of this problem lies in the false mindset of the society that women are meek and inferior. The fact that many men have upheld this notion and many women have given in, have acted as boosters for this mockery. The graph of street harassment cases have steadily risen in recent times especially after the Mangalore and Bangalore attacks by the political party. Besides on roads, clubs, buses, cinema halls, beaches, street corners, and tea stalls or roadside vendors, now students are also found practicing such activities in classrooms and canteens. Thus, the shocking revelation of youth being both the culprits and the victims comes into light.

Street harassment is not restricted to one kind of woman. Women across the various strata’s of society and age group have experienced it. My mothers’ friend, herself has been a victim of such atrocities. Once when my mother and her friend were taking an evening walk, they passed by a group of young boys. The moment they walked by them, one of the boys came running behind them and hit my mum's friend on her private part and ran away. What was the twosome to do? At the spur of the moment all they could do was fling a few abusive names at the culprits.. The recent attacks against women were targeted on their clothing styles, the kind of lifestyle they seem to adopt and the very fact that they were out as independent women on streets at night. The victim's clothes, her companions, her occupation and her habits are all used to put her on trial. The patriarchal society that we live in poses challenges to girls by treating her with indifference. Women are increasingly venturing out of the home, taking jobs, wearing Western clothes, going to college. Many men feel threatened by this, and sexual harassment is the easiest way to put a woman in her place. The hooting, ogling, close body contact, whispering, and passing of vulgar comments will certainly disturb the psyche of a girl who will then be afraid to access any atmosphere may it be insecure or secure. The more recent attacks show that the victims were well dressed, decent and had no hand in provocation. This shows that it is not because the woman did something or wore something indecent, rather just the fact that

these individuals may not take any action against the miscreants. Young Girls in Hyderabad and Secunderabad tolerate “eve-teasing” silently because of the fear of loosing their social status and becoming the laughing stock of town. Some other cases of street harassment victims are as follows: • Hemangini Gupta, a journalist, is one of them. On an overnight train journey in June 2005, she was molested by a man who repeatedly touched her breasts and legs when she was asleep. She filed a police complaint, despite the ticket collector and police pleading with her not to "ruin the man's life." She says she got no support from the other passengers and the police refused to believe her at first. After Gupta filed the investigation has dragged on for a year and a half; the outcome remains uncertain. • 24 Feb, Lakshmi was attacked by four men who punched her, hit her, and abused her for wearing jeans. • That week, Jasmine was attacked by four middle-aged men at when her auto broke down. They physically assaulted and tried to disrobe her while yelling obscenities. SO HOW TO CURB STREET HARASSMENT????????? If not curb then,atleast,how to reduce the cases of street harassment taking place in our country? Those who fight back occasionally suffer violent repercussions, but some individuals and organizations are braving the risks. This past February, a 52-year-old woman in the north Indian town of Lucknow was shot dead for protesting against the harassment of her daughter-in-law. For the past three years, Indian women and a few men in Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi and Chennai have been tackling

sexual harassment. They are part of Blank Noise (www.blanknoise.org), a still fledgling but gradually growing nationwide movement. They do this in several ways; through street plays, posting photos and pictures of harassers in the Internet, and public forums. The founder of this organization, Jasmeen Pathija felt the need for action to be taken. ‘Nirbhaya Karnataka’, ‘Alternative Law Forum’, Maraa’, ‘Samvada’ and ‘Vimochana’ are some of organizations that also carry out campaigns and projects since the increase in street harassment cases since 2000. The Indian Law too contains certain measures to abolish this social evil. The Section 298 (A) and (B) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), sentences a man found guilty of making a girl or woman the target of

obscene gestures, remarks, songs or recitation for a maximum time of three months. Section 292 of the IPC clearly spells out that showing pornographic or obscene pictures, books or slips to a woman or girl draws a fine of Rs.2000 with two years of rigorous imprisonment for first offenders. In case of repeated offence, when and if proved, the offender will be slapped with a fine of Rs.5000 with five years imprisonment. Under Section 509 of the IPC, obscene gestures, indecent body language and acidic comments directed at any woman or girl carries a penalty of rigorous imprisonment for one year. Now the million dollar question is will law alone be able to stop street harassment?? The answer to this being -NO! Girls these days are courageous to take action but they require the support of the society. They hesitate to go to police due to the fear that the response will not only be poor but also that the police will treat them badly and pay no heed to the sentiments of the injured. They will be condemned as the perpetrators instead of being the injured party and the police should be sensitized to deal such cases with some compassion and concern. Every girl should be reminded that they are not weak as considered by the society. They should be given training in self-protection. Watching a crime silently is as sinful as committing it and this thought should be instilled in the minds of every citizen so that they too feel responsible. Creating awareness among the masses and specially the ‘youth’ about the pros and corns of such acts will go a long way in curbing it.

Media can play a pro-active role by highlighting the people who indulge in such horrendous acts. The fear of being caught on the camera and appearing in the newspapers will discourage the boys to a great extent. Media should open separate lines so that girls can complain easily. This will encourage or rather force the police to take quicker actions. Generally eve-teasing is done for pleasure. This pleasure has to be dominated by fear, fear of punishment. Police can’t be made totally responsible for this, public also has to help in this. Men indulging in these atrocious acts should understand the insult the girls go through. Remember that the same can happen to your sisters and mothers or friends. “Anatomy is destiny” said Sigmund Freud, the famous psychoanalycist. The destiny of women now lies in the narrow perceptions of men of the holy sanctuary of her body. Will she ever be free of this curse?

STOP STARING!!!

It was a hot summers day of 2002, in a cool air-conditioned classroom in the institution I started my educational journey 15 years ago.Everyone in the room was silent.The silence which echoed the sound of my racing heart-beat.I stood before the class with the steady consciousness of tiny beads of sweat forming on my forehead.Just an hour ago I was enjoying with my friends.Laughing and talking.Now not even the shadow of the laughter existed on my face.I looked down into the paper that was in my clammy hands and read out,"Determination.."..suddenly realizing the purpose of my standing in front of a student population of 40...

Few moments later, I tried to recall what I had memorized but all that came out was ,"Determination is confidence.Confidence refers to self-determination.."I felt my face burn with mixed feelings of embarrassment and shame as I couldn't remember another word of my prepared speech and started having the premonition that I was going to cry.So I quickly mumbled a "Thank You" and went back to my seat.

This was my situation back in the seventh standard.Stage fright.Six years later, not much of an improvement has taken place.I go through the same ordeal everytime I go in front of an audience.It even cost me prestigious positions in school.

So what exactly is stage fright?

Stage fright or performance anxiety refers to the fear or persistent phobia related to performance in front of an audience.With reference to public speaking, it is known as Glossophobia.It has numerous signs: fluttering or pounding heart, tremor in the hands and legs, diarrhea, facial nerve tics, dry mouth and so on.It may also lead to stuttering,stammering and palpitation and at times even unconsciousness.According to experts deep breathing, meditative exercises or doing visualization prior to taking the stage often helps.But if the anxiety levels are high, then therapeutic assistance must be taken.

I can definitely vouch for the pounding heart,tremor in hands and legs,dry mouth,and stammering through personal experience.But my latest feat has been to overcome the fear of speaking in front of anybody and everyody.Joining a media related course where public speaking is essential was my first step,the next being taking part in all possible programmes as my courage allowed and third, before doing any kind of performance reminding myself that 'I can do it'.

But we must all remember nobody ever died from stage fright or speaking in public. According to surveys, many people would rather die than speak in public. Many around the

world are a part of this problem just like me. All I would like to suggest is that "Only when we are no longer afraid, do we begin to live".So shed your fears and express yourself to the world around you.

EVOLUTION OF DRESS CODE
In a democratic country, dressing according to one‟s free will should not be a crime. But college students in Chennai are forced to follow the code of formal attire. Flouting this code could even cost them their career. Clothes were made to protect the human body from the harshness of nature. But today, clothes indicate a person‟s social and economic status. The evolution of dress codes is a complex phenomenon. The 7th century B.C, Greek lawgiver Zaleucus was the first to frame a code. Romans followed them and drafted the „nota censoria‟. The divisions of caste, creed and religion started as early as the Aryan civilization and resulted in complex and diverse cultural practices in India. The difference was easy to notice as clothing such as dhoti, kurta and sari where for the ruling elite were made of silk and decorated with ornamental jewels. The working class, on the other hand, wore only cotton clothes. By the 16th century, class consciousness in dressing became more evident and evolved into a sense of identity. Europe too witnessed the demarcation of dressing styles between men and women; the elites always enjoyed the privilege of dress code and its adherence was thrust on the working class. As George Orwell said - “All animals are equal, but some animals more equal than others” The 18th and 19th century saw the shift from traditional Indian dressing to the British style. It had social and economic implications as well. With these changes, modesty in dress became an important aspect of Indian life. Over the last few years, there has been a steady increase in consciously dressing as dictated by ones religion. The neverending argument in every traditional household is the traditional dress code that has to be adhered for a social gathering. This pattern can be strongly noticed in places of worship. Among Muslims it is offending to pray without covering one‟s head, while it is not mandatory in other religions. Even colour in clothing plays an important role in society. People living in western countries wear black to funerals while people from India, particularly from the north, wear white. In certain places black is considered inauspicious. Black is not restricted to funerals alone, parties see a majority of people wearing black and is considered fashionable. Black is one colour that dominates the party floor. Dress codes play an important role in professional circles too. It defines the profession and the status that comes with it. Dress codes go a long way in presenting a respectable image of the professional. However a dress code for the sake of control can definitely stifle creativity in people. The corporate world was not the alone to adopt the dress code. The armed forces of any country and professionals from the medical field have followed dress code based on colour. It also crept into the games arena where, every player of a team dresses uniformly, thereby signifying the team‟s unity. Uniforms in educational institutions, lead to a sense of belongingness and equality. Dress codes also reveal identities. Politicians in India wear white kurta pyjama indicating political power. For years the unofficial dress code for journalists in India is the kurta. Regulating dressing patterns restricts an individual‟s right to freedom, but it standardizes and maintains unity and identity. At the end of the day, whether one likes it or not, the dress code is here to stay.

Polite Dress for male students: 1. White or light colored short or long sleeve shirt. Shirt must be tucked into trousers neatly. 2. Plain black, grey, blue or brown slacks 3. Dark colored or white closed shoes or sport shoes ( polite color) Polite Dress for female students: 1. White or light colored short or long sleeve blouse. Blouse must be tucked into skirt neatly. 2. Black or blue knee length skirt, polite style. 3. Dark colored closed shoes, sling back court shoes, or sport shoes (polite color). Casual dress for male students: 1. Shirt, Polo shirt, collar shirt or T-shirt ( not singlet) 2. Long pants not ragged jeans. 3. Closed shoes, strap shoes or sport shoes. Casual dress for female students: 1. Blouse exclude singlet, single strap, strapless, sleeveless or over fitting blouse. 2. Long pants or skirt (not too short). 3. Closed shoes, strap shoes or sport shoes.

Let us put a full stop to eve teasing

Still unsafe on the streets.

BEING A girl in the early twenties, I feel that no girl has been spared from being a victim of eve teasing. Eve teasing is an unforgivable act that injects shame, fear, disgust and helplessness in the victim. Being subjected to many instances of eve teasing is an inseparable part of every girl's life, causing

much avoidable mental agony to her. This in turn adversely affects her family and her friends. Eve teasing is a common incident, be it in buses, shopping arcades, cinema halls, shopping malls, pubs, restaurants, taxi/bus-terminals, railway booking counters and every other conceivable place; but the one place where it happens with alarming frequency is on the road. Girls are never spared in the streets or footpaths. A vulgar stare, a sly whistle, a wink, a well-timed clap, an unwarranted bump, a seemingly casual touch, a lingering look at a vulnerable time, the humming of a suggestive song, passing downright uncouth comments, cheap gestures, the display of an indecent snap or video, bikes flying close with hands stretched to feel around you, passing by in slow moving cars blasting loud music with many eyes inside measuring you up ... all these are typical examples of such sexual harassment. The ways they can harass a woman is surely endless! School children, welldressed executives, college kids, taxi-drivers, bus-conductors, pedestrians, officials, cng-drivers and aged people too have been enslaved by this horrific habit. I don't know how many women can truly say that they have never been molested in their lives. If they've been out in a public space, it doesn't matter what they are wearing, whether they are in great shape, whether they're lovely to look at or just plain, they will have been grabbed. A few questions to the right thinking people of the country: What is it that makes some men violate a woman's personal space and touch her? Who gives them the right to do that and think its ok? Do they also look at the women in their homes (mother or sister) with the same rubbish in their eyes? Are women responsible for these men having absolutely no fear to touch, grope, or expose themselves to women? What do girls really mean to them?

What makes two men look at a woman and react in two different ways: Bad upbringing? A disregard for women? Lack of decency? If I have male readers, can you please come out on this and tell me what treatment -- extreme or otherwise -- would prevent or frighten a man from molesting a woman? Families can play the most important role in eradicating girls teasing from society. Parents should talk to their sons openly and make them aware about the sufferings of girls caused by eve teasing. Parents have to make their sons understand that what is fun to boys may be a cause of suicide to girls. It is the responsibly of the parents to teach their sons to respect girls and their rights. It is really painful that in movies eve teasing is unashamedly glorified as a means of winning over the heart of a girl. Many girls in our society suffer from mental agonies caused by eve teasing, which they cannot share with anybody. Parents of teenage girls should deal with them in a friendly manner and conduct themselves in such a way that their offspring repose absolute faith in them and convey their sorrows and agonies. Most girls are extroverts but there are introvert girls too. The parents of those girls should be more alert. Girls, let's face it: Be bold! Let your family know first; no matter how much your family scolds you they will obviously stand behind you. Generate public opinion; never show your weakness to the culprit. Reveal the culprit to the neighbours. Show the culprit to your friends and family so that he can't even think of doing something harmful Get him counselling by the local seniors. Have a one-to-one with him, but in an open place and after informing your family; be polite in this case. Inform law enforcement people. Contact e-media, print media. Don't threaten the culprit at the outset. A behavioural change is the only lasting solution to this problem. Changing of behaviour is easier said than done. We have to increase public awareness and raise our (women) voice against such dreadful acts. It requires extensive public education aimed at every section of society at large. Plays, public speeches, articles and even door-to-door propaganda can be a good vaccine against eve teasing, and will help in spreading public awareness.

Lastly, it is the duty and responsibility of the government to enact legislation and put a full stop to such heart-breaking deaths, immediately!

What should be done to prevent Eve Teasing?
Everyday I find news in the electronic and print media of bangladesh that another woman was harassed by persons such as hormone raged teenagers to professional street thugs. Eve teasing has become one of the most burning issues of the country. The abrupt rise in eve teasing, killing by the desperate eve teasers of collage teacher and a mother who courageously protested against them proves that law and order is deteriorating day by day. College and school going girls frequently facing vulgar words by the teasers. To speak the truth, women gets severe maltreatment in a least developed country like Bangladesh where govt is taking different strategies and policies to empower women in all spheres of life. Nevertheless, exploitation and oppression against them are on the rise. Moreover, birth of girl children is not warmly welcomed and recognised due to superstition and misinterpretation of religion. It is also true that our socio-economic condition is not yet favourable for women to develop them. In this regard, the outlook of the young boys should be completely changed by family members so that they behave with the young girls in friendly and respectful manner and do not indulge in violence against them. Different socio-cultural organisations need to chalk out elaborte programmes

highlighting the negative impacts of eve teasing to make the young generation conscious. But above all is The law enforcement. The laws are there, quietly sitting on the papers without being disturbed by us. This should end. Police and Legal system should take stern actions against the eve-teasers and sexual harassers and bring them to justice. ONLY THEN eve teasing can be affectively curbed down.
Let us put a full stop to Eve teasing in India
Eve- teasing: Let us put a full stop! (topic)

It is obvious that fair sex is facing difficulties,much more than his famale counterpart, from birth to death, in this uneven world. Her life is not safe, even in her mother's womb! Eve-teasing, dowry harassment,etc...the list doesnot end! This is about eve-teasing death of a girl, due to torture meted out to her in a far off town , away from her home,where she had gone for studying.

That teenage girl by name Muthu selvi, was studying in the XI th standard . Some youths had photographed her in their cell camera and were black mailing her. It is said that they were threatening to mix some obscene photographs of women, with Muthuselvi's face and put it in the net. The girl did not realise that the threat was only a hollow one and that it was made only to embarass and blackmail her and nothing more. Muthuselvi is just one example. Eve-teasing deaths of innocent girls are happening in every part of our country.It is discomforting that even after the enactment of strict laws,by the governments, the menace is continuing. Muthuselvi was staying at the hostel run for SC/ST community students,at Nagercoil, and studying at the Salvation Army Higher Secondaray School,

nearby.Salvation Army is one among the various Pentecost sects of christianity. What sin has this innocent girl done to lose her life? Before her suicide, the fatherless girl had conveyed to her mother,while at home,in a village, in Tirunelveli District, earlier, about the torture by some youths. Her mother who is an agricultural worker perhaps failed to grab the magnitude of the problem faced by her daughter. She sent back Muthuselvi to the hostel, where she was staying , after consoling her. For the last time of course! After some days, a dull Muthuselvi, who returned home hanged herself up! Who can console her mother and her only elder brother? It was reported,lately, that some youth had been taken into custody. If Muthuselvi's father had been alive and happend to be a big shot, he would have probably sent strong men to teach the culprits appropriate lessons and drive them away for ever. We find poor students falling an easy prey to eve-teasing, more often than well off students, comparatively speaking. Also, for example, if her father was alive and happened to be a higher Police Official, no body would have dared to go near her! By law, the government should make it mandatory that the youth found to be guility in eve-teasing deaths should be dismissed from the school/college he is studying and also barred from joining any other school/college - even through correspondence. They should not be allowed to join the government services. Their Driving Licenses should also be cancelled permanently.No Bank or Insurance Company should entertain them for opening a Bank account or getting an Insurance Policy. They should not be issued passports, through out their lives. All these punishments should be apart from rigorous imprisonment for a few years. In essence, they should be blacklisted at all levels and made a "zero'! Then only there will be no more Muthuselvis. At the other end, the parents should bring up their children , whether male or female, who are would-be teenagers with love, piousness, honesty, patience,

confidence and sensitivity to others' mental and physical sufferings. Parents should be a role-model for their children! Then only, there will be no need, for them, to repent in the future. Mind, Parents whose son is in jail,for causing an eve-teasing death, cannot be happy,as well! Parents of teenage girls should deal with them in a friendly manner and conduct themselves in such a way that their offsprings repose absolute faith in them and convey their sorrows and agonies. Most girls are extroverts but there are introvert girls too. The parents of those girls should be more alert.

So, fear alone can deter vultures, eyeing for innocent pigeons, such as Muthuselvi, of Tamilnadu. It is the duty and responsibility of the government to enact legislation on the above harder lines, and put a full-stop to such heart-breaking deaths, immediately !