Women, keep up the pressure on harassers

Updated: Sep 25, 2019, 07:45 IST | The Editorial

It is disappointing to see the spate of sexual harassment cases continuing unabated. It is heartening to note though that women are complaining, even taking pictures on their phones so that cops can nab the culprit easily

Representational picture
Representational picture

A visiting faculty of a city-based college reported a man she spotted masturbating outside one of the institute's gates over the weekend. She promptly took a picture of him and shared it with the Mumbai Police on Twitter. The Juhu cops were exemplary, arresting him within a couple of hours.

Just a few days earlier, this paper reported how an auto driver flashed a woman and masturbated. He was arrested. It was later found that he is a serial offender. In some of these and other incidents, men were making lewd gestures or surfing lewd pictures on their mobile phones within distance from their victims.

It is disappointing to see the spate of sexual harassment cases continuing unabated. It is heartening to note though that women are complaining, even taking pictures on their phones so that cops can nab the culprit easily.

When it comes to the cops and attitudes overall, it is good to note that such incidents are not being trivialised. They are being treated like the crimes they are and offenders are being arrested. Earlier, there was a tendency to look at men stalking women, making gestures as "small incidences" and one should not make a big deal about them. Women were told to move out of the view of the offender, ignore the flashers or lewd gestures and walk away. This was tantamount to putting the onus on victims, rather than blaming the offender.

Today, we see this changing and every sexual offence and harassment through the cyber world is treated seriously if there is a complaint. So it should be. For years now, the mental agony these offenders subject their victim too was brushed away or not acknowledged. We see a transformation here and a recognition of the gravity of these offences, too. Keep up the pressure, and send a message harassment is harassment and one should not and cannot get away.

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