Help from police? No way, say women

Corporates that do not give cab facilities to women after 7 pm should be fined

With negligible police patrolling and inadequate street lighting in some of the most remote areas, Delhi has not been able to do away with the tag of ‘crime capital’.

Despite the outrage over the Sunday last gang rape incident, not much has been done to improve the situation.

Delhi roads after dark, that is after 5.30 pm in winter, start getting deserted at a faster pace compared to other months.

According to women living in North Campus, ITO, areas near highways such as GT Karnal bypass and NH-24, Vasant Vihar, Vasant Kunj, Ridge Road and many other residential colonies, these places get deserted with no buses or police patrolling.

“Presence of police personnel is thin in Vasant Kunj. I do not use public transport since it is not safe. I prefer to travel in car, preferably with a driver,” says Aakanksha Bhargava, a Vasant Kunj resident.

Urvi Mishra, a resident of Dwarka, says she uses her own vehicle or takes cabs. “I assume Metro is the safest of all public transport available in the city,” she adds.
But women who travel in Metro after 8 pm say even they do not feel safe.

“Metro does not leave us till our houses. If I reach my station by 9 pm and nobody is at home to pick me up, I get the jitters because I need to take a cyclerickshaw to my house,” says Livleen Kaur, a resident of Rohini.

After office hours, most bus routes start seeing a decline in the frequency of buses. “I tried to climb on to a bus at 8.30 pm towards Noida a few days ago as I was not getting an auto. Seeing only eight to ten men who were passing comments and scanning me from top to bottom, I decided not to get on to that bus,” says Sakshi Singh, who was trying to take a bus from Okhla flyover.

“I had to call my friend to pick me up,” she adds.

She says though most corporate offices are in Okhla Phase-3, there are no lights on the roads and not a single police van. Following the brutal gang rape, corporates in the city have decided to provide pick and drop facilities during dark hours.

“Women across sectors who work after 7 pm should get cab facilities. This should become a rule and whoever violates it should be fined daily,” says Rita Mishra, a media professional who travels from south Delhi to Gurgaon for work daily.

According to recent surveys done by different groups, it was found that women face the
highest risk of sexual harassment in buses and on deserted streets.

Some women Deccan Herald spoke to say more women police officers should patrol deserted areas, and bus and cab drivers should be evaluated on a regular basis with proper background check done and verified with police stations.

“For instance, I faced eve-teasing in a bus, so I got off at a stand and saw a PCR van in front of me. I approached the police officer, who demanded for the bus number when the bus was leaving in front of him,” says a girl who doesn’t want to be named.
“And then the officer said the area does not come under his jurisdiction, and that I should call 100. This is not what we expect from police. A girl who is traumatise will not note down the bus number,” says the girl.

Comments (+)