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UK stresses on safety of women tourists in India

London, Mar 18, 2013 (PTI): 23:16 IST
Britain has advised its female tourists to be cautious while travelling in India in the wake of the rape of a Swiss tourist in Madhya Pradesh last week. "Our travel advice states that women should use caution if travelling alone in India.

"Reported cases of sexual assault against women and young girls are increasing; recent sexual attacks against female visitors in tourist areas and cities show that foreign women are also at risk," a Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) spokesperson said.

Though the advice has not been modified following last week's sexual assault on a foreign tourist, the government's travel advisory remains under constant review in view of the situation on the ground, it added.

"British women have been the victims of sexual assault in Goa, Delhi, Bangalore and Rajasthan and women travellers often receive unwanted attention in the form of verbal and physical harassment by individuals or groups of men.

"If you are a woman travelling in India you should respect local dress codes and customs and avoid isolated areas, including beaches, when alone at any time of day," says the FCO's current advisory under the section of 'Crime'.

Six men accused of raping the 39-year-old Swiss tourist, who was camping with her husband in a forest in MP, have been remanded in custody.
The woman has since been discharged from hospital.

The incident comes just months after the brutal gang-rape of a 23-year-old physiotherapy student in New Delhi that sparked international outrage.
She died later in a hospital in Singapore.

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