India: Women in Bangalore are facing serious violence and attacks

المصدر: 
WLUML Networkers
More than 80 attacks and cases of moral policing have been reported from all over Karnataka in the last six months.
Over the last two weeks, several women have been violently attacked in Bangalore. On 28 Feb at 10.30 pm, Sanjana got hit by two men on a bike who slowed down, socked her on her jaw and fled away. On 24 Feb, Lakshmi was attacked at around 9 pm by four men who punched her, hit her, and abused her for wearing jeans.
On 17 Feb, two men chased Geetanjali’s car at 1.30 pm. One chased her with a large stone as she ran to a friend’s house for refuge. That week, Jasmine was attacked by four middle-aged men at 11.30 am when her auto broke down. They physically assaulted and tried to disrobe her while yelling obscenities.

More than 80 attacks and cases of moral policing have been reported from all over Karnataka in the last six months.[1] Two women have committed suicide after humiliation from right-wing forces. On 12 Feb, Vanita killed herself after Bajrang Dal activists attacked her. On 11 Feb, Ashwini killed herself after Venur Bajrang activists attacked her and her friend Salim.

The police have not taken meaningful steps to stop or prevent this violence, to arrest the perpetrators, or to ensure the safety of all women in Bangalore and Karnataka.

These attacks are crimes against women. They are legal offences. They are neither isolated events nor trivial incidents of ‘eve-teasing’. They are part of a series of attacks inflicted on women in the name of ‘morality’, attacks that are escalating as women resist and fight back.

It is the core responsibility of the state and city police to ensure that public spaces are kept safe for all. Women across class barriers – from powrakarmikas to garment factory workers to students and young professionals in the corporate sector – have today become vulnerable targets on the streets of Karnataka.

[1] Vimochana, a women’s group in Bangalore, has documented these cases from Sept 2009 from the following Kannada publications: Karavali Ale, Jaya Kirana and Vartha Bharathi.

1 March 2009