Educate our men instead of empowering our women

What happened in Bengaluru has been happening since decades

When I was in the seventh grade, I was coming back from a New Year's party at our family friend's house at 1 am. Now, back in 2001, returning home at 1 am in a small town like Jammu was unusual, I'd say. However, witnessing a group of men, dancing in front of a silver Maruti 800 and screaming away as they did so, was even more unusual. What happened next has remained etched in my memory since the last 16 years.

Three of them dashed towards our car as we drove past them-the one who tapped on my window was wearing a sleeveless maroon knitted sweater. My father pressed hard on the accelerator as my mum let out a scream and I leapt towards the other end of the seat. Now, all of this happened in mere 5-10 seconds.

Astonishingly, the remaining ride was absolutely silent. It was only the next day that I heard my mother narrate the incident to my aunt when she revealed that those drunken hooligans scared her to the bones. She also added that she wished she had taken my brothers along to the party, so my Dad would have felt ‘more confident' driving two women with him.

I felt bad for my father then and thought that I had put him in a vulnerable spot back then. I did not realise that by doing so, by not speaking with my father about it, I had given away all the power to those mindless freaks on that road in Jammu.

What happened in Bengaluru isn't something new. It gets repeated every year on Holi or during some weddings or any occasion of revelry. It made me realise that while the instinctive response to such an incident is a protective one, the real solution lies in the fact that we should not feel the need to protect our women.

So, here goes. I don't want to keep checking if my car is locked at every traffic signal and I don't want to think about what I buy or what I wear. The perpetrator needs to stop thinking that he will just get away with it, well because that movie star or that politician did. He needs to feel the fear. The sad truth of the very advanced world we live in today is that we need to educate our men instead of empowering our women.

Author : Reema Behl

Article Source : Blush.ME

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