Why Groping Is Not That Big A Deal In India

I have been a Bangalorean all my life and have faced several groping incidents as a child, teenager and adult – it’s a given in Bangalore at any crowded street/bus on any given day. It is sad that women in turn are asked to dress ‘modestly’, not step out alone or late, not make eye contact, look down and keep walking, be careful or resort to these ‘weapons’ to safeguard their bodies in public.

Women's weapons of self defense
Forearmed (2017)
Ink and Marker on Paper
Drawing 15.7 H x 11.8 W x 0 in
Groping is a given in Bangalore/India at any crowded street/bus on any given day. It is sad that women in turn are asked to dress ‘modestly’ and be careful or resort to these ‘weapons’ to safeguard their bodies in public. The Indian mindset needs a change of pants. Till then, women need to be alert, fight back, report and the authorities need to be taught to be sensitive – not to pooh pooh as ‘it’s not a big deal’.

I have even been warned by so called ‘well-wishers’ not to retaliate because these perverts are capable of doing anything – from buying easily available cheap bottles of acid to throw on your face to slashing you with a knife, to even murdering you in broad daylight – we all hear about these crimes against Indian women every single day – all this for just for one moment of ‘indiscretion’ (read retaliation) on your part.

Pervy Auto drivers in Bangalore are known to elbow boobs as you get in to an auto.The tailors tend to graze a little too close to your boob while taking measurements. The guy behind you in the bus will press his crotch against your back every time the bus brakes.  Some stranger will inadvertently brush his hand against your butt while walking on a busy street. That 60 something waiter will put his elbow out as you try to manouvere your way in a Darshini – Gropers come in all shapes, sizes, ages, religions, professions and regions  of India.

One thing they all have in common though – is that they are men. Just not enough of a man to treat a woman with respect! They just can’t take no for an answer. Hell, a woman’s no even means ‘yes’ to these psychos.

Commodity (2016)
Ink and Marker on Textured Paper
Drawing 15.7 H x 11.8 W x 0 in
A newly married woman is depicted as a commodity with a barcode tattoed on her right shoulder. Barcodes are a symbol of consumerist culture, she is clad in a uterus print bikini, a literal piece of meat up for grabs, a nice work of art to be picked up, felt up and put back on the shelf and a baby-making machine.

The repressive sexual environment, lack of education, no sex education,  misinformation from media, lack of parenting, sexual perversion, porn addiction, lack of law enforcement, the idea that groping is not really a crime, that a woman is asking for it by wearing something or behaving a certain way  – The Indian mindset needs a change of pants. Bollywood propagates and glorifies stalking. Eve teasing ‘heroes’ forcibly kissing their so called love interests while singing praises of her eyes and other body parts is de rigeur. It’s all ok and according to Bollywood and popular opinion, the woman supposedly enjoys the attention. I sincerely hope all this changes in my lifetime. Till such time, women need to be alert, fight back, report and the authorities need to be taught to be sensitive, make it easy and safe for women to report incidents,  to punish the perverts, to take instant action – and not pooh pooh it. ‘It’s not a big deal, he just groped you, it’s not like he raped you’ – Nice Attitude India.

 

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  64. Yes and you don’t have to be a woman to stand up for women’s safety just like you don’t have to be a dog to fight for animal rights. More men need to come forward, not just stand there and watch the Groper in action and do nothing.

  65. A collective change in. Mindset and behaviour is needed. As u said when shrela ki. Jawani and babydoll plays 24×7,on tv and when rape. Scenes and raunchy scenes Get more open it Perverts the mind! Not to forget liquor and drugs which plays with ur mind lose control! Punishment needs to b more harsh.. To show people who commit such crimes are not spared!

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