The importance of self-defence

The gang rape incident in Delhi has surely evoked strong sentiments in the City. From wearing black clothes to holding candlelight marches, youngsters are showing their solidarity to women’s safety by condemning this act. But this is not enough, say the girls in the City.

They want something more practical to be done. Many say that the need of the hour is self-defence.

In fact, the incident has also led to a lot of reactions in the educational institutions with many of them holding workshops and sessions on awareness and self-defence for girl students.

Youngsters are giving great support to this move as they feel that it should be made compulsory in not only colleges but also in schools.

Sneha Vasanad, a student, who is also the Ladies’ Representative of St Joseph’s College of Commerce, agrees that self-defence is the need of the hour.

“Many people are busy organising rallies and candle-light marches. But how much has it helped? I feel it’s now time to be more practical, wake up and be aware.

Self-defence will not only help us defend ourselves but also teach us how to escape any untoward situation,” says Sneha, who plans to organise a workshop in the coming month.

Mount Carmel College too held a one-hour session on self-defence recently on the campus for the Pre-University students.

Says Padmalatha, the HoD of English Department, “There is a need to raise awareness about one’s rights and the laws and even prepare the girls for any situation.

We also hold workshops, where the girls become aware on their fundamental rights as a women as well. Till last year, we had conducted karate classes. All these facilities really help them become more confident as well. I feel more such workshops should be held for girls so that girls can actually fight back.”  

Later this month, VET Manandi PU College, is also planning a talk by a woman gynaecologist on safety precautions and general awareness for girls.

The principal of the college, Annie, says that the staff has  established trust with their students and parents.  “We always tell our girl students to inform us on the minutest of things like someone following them on the road or a known person trying to get close.

We also immediately inform the parents if classes end early or if there is a function. I feel awareness and self-defence should start at the school level itself,” she adds.

Surana College is planning to have a woman inspector to talk to the students on dealing with any situation, while St Joseph’s College of Arts and Science, too have brought in people from an NGO to create awareness and   support the cause.

Pooja, a student from BNM Institute of Technology, says, “The incident has definitely raised a lot of questions.

  The most important being what is going to happen next. We can’t just wait around for the next attack to happen. I feel by making self-defence classes more accessible, we get the courage to deal with situations.”

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