….wild is the wind…creative free speech is the seed….
Commentary from Cecilia: As I watch all of India mobilised into days of mass protest over the brutal gang rape incident of a 23 yrs old young woman, I wished I could say that this was something “shocking” about the problems of New Delhi living. But alas, I don’t think so. I wished I could say that Delhi had lost its innocence by encountering such a heinous crime for the first time ever..but that is not true. Sexual Harassment is routine in the night life of New Delhi.
Before anyone start screaming “Boohoo,you are picking on India…” Know that I say this from personal experience as a teenager visiting your capital over 2 decades ago and I’m saying this after having strong ties with many human rights lobbyists in your country for over a decade.
So let me share my anecdotal experience of one New year’s Eve in New Delhi outside a hotel around Windsor Place…..years ago….
“My Polish-Australian friend and I were out for New Year’s Eve at one of the 5 star hotels nearby for the New Year’s Eve count-down. After the count down, like quite a few tourists staying locally we decided to walk back to our hotel, only one big block from where we were. Along the way there were loads of cars and loads of other people, though yes, all the women out on the streets were clearly tourists walking back to their hotels like us. It was a very celebratory atmosphere, people were exuberant and honking their horns on the streets. Even police cars were celebrating the new year!
We were about to walk past a group of city workers in suits and ties, when one of them came forward and wished me a Happy New year! He was polite and jokingly asked me for a New Year’s kiss…I told him we can shake hands like he would with his sister! So we did…we shook hands! He laughed and asked me where we were going and said I should get a taxi ….and this seemed like a very harmless comment, but something made my alarm bells go off…..
It was in mid-conversation that I realised, my Polish Aussie friend was missing and was no longer beside me!!!!
I looked around, only to see a circle of guys standing about 1m away from our chats. Then I saw my friend’s shoes peeking out from inside the circle, she was silent and shocked. I reached in and grabbed her by the arm and dragged her out of the circle and away from her molesters!
From Across the road, I turned around and verbally abused the guy who was distracting me in a suit while his friends Groped my friend. I was screaming from across the busy road so Everyone could hear me point to him as a ”Freako sex pervert! and how I hope his bloody mother cuts off his penis when she finds out about this so he will not be Shaming her in all of New Delhi as a woman who gave birth to a Sicko wannabe-Rapist!”
He screams back,”Look, I never touched no one! No one touched you! Stop shouting this! “
I screeched,”Your f*cking arsehole friends groped my friend! You arseholes, come near us and I’m castrating your entire family and taking out your balls with piano wires!”
I could hear his friends saying something in Hindi as I pointed them out to anyone or anything that would listen..and I could hear the first guy saying something about Chinese to them!
They all started dissipating and he just yelled back the most stupid comment I had ever heard in my life,“Look, no one touched you! Your friend is different (meaning white!), she doesn’t mind!”
This exchanged occurred with us screaming at one another across the busy road…so there were lots of witnesseses. I think someone took a photo of the Pervert guy in a suit screaming back at me about how he never touched me! So we kept moving after checking that they were not following us in anyway, they were not, if anything they ran off really fast.
My friend completely froze and was in shock! I said,”Keep walking, why didn’t you call me when they grabbed you?”
She said,”I was just taken by surprise.”
As we walked to our hotel, a slimey little person kept approaching the western women walking on the road. There were 2 blonde women walking in front of us who just ignored him. He tried to come up to me at about 2 metres away and pointed to a car slow crawling along the curb. He asked every western women on behalf of the guys in the car to get in the car!
My response also involved somebody’s scrotums and piano wires! ( It sounds funny now but it is much more serious when I say it in a Big Adrenalin rush of Temper, making loads of noise and ready to push someone under a bus !lol.) Then again, the slimey moron looked like a stunted Lemur!
Again, the slimey little man ran off and approached the next set of female western tourists soliciting them to get in the car.
These incidents of Sexual harassment were not unique to me or my friends, that evening probably every woman walking back to their hotels, encountered something similar in varying degrees !
It is the complete mundane-ness of the situation that interested me when I read about the disgusting and brutal Gang rape. The culture of sexual harassment had clearly been normalised with the modernisation of the New Delhi city grid. No wonder they are asking people to not hold New Years Eve parties!
I am so very sorry that the young lady in question encountered such a brutal fate. I think it is endemic of the city of New Delhi night life, though the degrees of aggression and violence were clearly what disgusted and outraged the city’s millions of citizens. You would be lying to yourself if as a citizen of New Delhi you tried to claim that you had NEVER seen this kind of sexual harassment on the streets!
Many mentioned that women should not be given anti-rape classes but that only the men should be taught to not rape. I find that a nice political slogan but not very practical.
My response to the sexual Harassers of my friend were text book anti-rape class moves:
1) Establish Boundaries- Clear NO!
2) Physically establish boundaries
3) Force an eye-eye Human interactions in the surroundings As soon as possible!
4) Physically remove yourself from danger, by any means necessary. Do not be afraid to Scream, Physically Defend yourself, Cause a giant Scene, Stop Traffic, Destroy property, set off alarms to get attention about feeling unsafe…do anything necessary to Physically get to a point where you are not Isolated.
5) Emotional boundaries-Blame Him, NEVER blame yourself! By any means necessary, express whatever emotions you need to Stay Empowered!
Training like this is about focusing on the Woman’s emotional, physical and mental well-being in the course of training her to get herself to safety by any means necessary should she be found in a situation of potential danger!
You can knock it all you like, I think Every woman living in a modern City should voluntarily take this kind of Assertiveness classes. I am not going to lie to you….Years of such training meant that when confronted with Potentially Violent Energy, I am personally willing to do whatever actions necessary to “Save myself by Incapacitating him as fast as possible for as long as it takes to do so!”…
I think it is a mistake to Deprive Young women of Anti-Rape Assertiveness Training in High School and at Universities! I’m not an expert but I have had a few introductory sessions as a teenager with a retired ex-Australian military hand-hand close combat experts who specialised in converting Martial Arts of China and Japan into Free Style Tactics! I think it is a genuinely useful skill in life….a bit like Bush-survival training….of course I don’t ever want to be stranded in the outback without food, water and a radio…but the Odds of coming out of the situation Alive is so much higher if you had some survival training!
There is nothing wrong with Women deciding to take Classes to Defend themselves…of course I would rather a world where there is no need to do that…but then I accept that there are Dickheads on this earth and it is by far better that as an empowered Assertive Woman, I learn how to Incapacitate (in any way necessary) my attackers so I can get away to safety than to not know.
Okay, possibly the Chinese version of what one should to do one’s sexual harasser is a bit Vengeful…but oh well…it is all in the Branding! And as Bill Gate would say,”I didn’t build Micro-soft by writing Cheques”…and the Cantonese Refrain is,”We didn’t get to 6000 yrs by massaging the toes of anyone who tries to step on us! “
It is so important to get the right training! Always always learn from a Professional!
But on a more civilised note, I think Ajay’s letter is a better way of lobbying for change. Though I still don’t have any problems with giving Women the right to bear Arms in New Delhi at night! To me, it is a very sensible solution. It will probably reduce the incidents of groping of female tourists in town!
An Open Letter to the Prime Minister: It’s not anger Mr. Prime Minister, its Guiltby Ajay Kumar on Friday, 28 December 2012·
Dear Mr. Prime Minster,
The Delhi rape victim died early today morning (4:45 AM Singapore time). She was brutally raped on the 16th of December this year. She succumbed to her injuries and passed away. This brutal crime which happened at the heart of the National Capital made us wake up as a society to the fact that as a people we have failed to keep ourselves safe.
Government ministers and the media made a noise saying that as a nation we were angry. Angry at our Government, our institutions our police. We even threw stones at them at Raj Path to protest the institutional failure. But Mr Prime Minster it’s not anger that drove these protests its guilt.
We all have to bear the guilt for her death. As a society we could not protect our own. We had the vote, but her safety was never on our mind when we voted. Some of us even refused to exercise our franchise citing the fact that the candidates on offer were not good enough. The rest of us voted governments into power based on trivial things like caste, religion and economic incentives and today we reap the result of our apathy. We could not protect one of our own.
I do not blame you or your government. You are but a creation of this national apathy. All of you in Parliament who will rise up and give rousing speeches calling for the most harrowing of punishments. But rape is not a new problem. It’s been there in this country as long as any of us, the young and the old can remember. Where were these speeches before this crime? It took the most brutal of attacks this nation has witnessed one of its own to wake you up. But I do not blame you, as a people we allowed you to sleep. We watched and even took sides as we watched Parliament after Parliament succumb to a legislative paralysis because our own MP’s could not get along with each other on issues of national importance. We saw the sexist and chauvinist remarks passed on the floor of the house and we kept quiet. We never took this into consideration when we voted. Like I said, we are guilty today. We are guilty of a grave negligence, we could not protect her in Delhi, and we had a duty to.
We are guilty of not looking at women as human beings in this country. She is always someone’s mother, sister, wife, grandmother as though she has no personality of her own. We drew this into our rhetoric and made her something less than human saying that she needed a man to gain her identity. You did not do this, we did and you merely reflected our views.
Her blood is on all of our hands, the duty to bring the culprits to justice is ours to bear. But Mr. Prime Minister, you, the government, the opposition and the administration are mere symbols of an apathy that we as a nation have built up over the years. We will come out and shout in large numbers to convince you to act, but you will be apathetic, because we as a people are apathetic and what reason do we have not to be so? The system when it began at the stroke of a midnight hour in 1947 was labelled to be the greatest experiment in the world. This experiment has failed, we failed it. If you are what we have today then as a nation we have failed.
I send this letter to you today in the early hours of a Saturday Morning to say that I do not expect anything better from you or your government, I do not expect anything better from Parliament and our institutions. The way you have acted is the way you were taught to act. This leviathan that is built out of a national apathetic angst is acting the way it was designed to act.
But however I would like to remind you, that now we are aware of the blood on our hands and are aware of our responsibilities, the apathy will go and if you have to keep your seats you need to radically change the way you do things. As citizens and voters we are.
A concerned citizen.
His Excellency the President of India
His Excellency the Vice-President of India
The Honourable Speaker of the Lok Sabha.
The Honourable Leader of the Opposition
99 Images of New Delhi Protests in the last 2 weeks over Xmas 2012! Wherever possible we attributed the (c) of the photographer so if there’s any images you would like to find out the copyrights of …just simply click on and see if the photographer has left his name. If there is any uncertainty, please contact Femen India as it is their volunteers that compiled the different open source images from so many different Web sources and for those who wish to support their mission to create substantive changes in India. Please follow their Facebook site: Femen India and the Femen official website in Russian and English
For Articles and information about this in the Mainstream Media:
And this dramatic interview with one of the accused’s father:
“If my son is guilty, Hang him…” in Hindi
A 23-year-old para-medical student from Uttarakand, who was travelling in a bus with her male friend, was allegedly gang-raped by four men inside the moving bus and then thrown out of it after being brutally assaulted with an iron rod. Ram Singh, the driver of the bus, his brother Mukesh, Vinay Kumar, an assistant gym instructor and Pawan Gupta, a fruit seller were arrested by Delhi police on Tuesday (December 18). Father of accused Vinay Kumar said to TIMES NOW that his son should be punished if found guilty.
Voices of Women Worldwide VOWW TV founder and Indian National Vinanti Sarkar
has also been over-clocking in her lobby efforts about this issue!
A message posted by Collins Okello has gone Viral thanks to all global efforts worldwide
and the effort of our members art VOWW.tv!!!
From Cecilia.W.Yu Voww.tv Country Representative in the far east:
At the time of this posting, 161,041 saw the message,
73,514 commented and 43,367 Shared this on Facebook
Our statistical calculations indicate that
at an absolute minimal so far
7Million directly and 35 Million exponentially spreading
Damini (name given to the victim as a tribute to her Braveheart (also name used in english media)
Reason for this Name also has its basis in one of the Largest Grossing Bollywood film in history:
Damini – Lightning is a 1993 Hindi film directed by Rajkumar Santoshi starring Rishi Kapoor, Meenakshi Sheshadri, Sunny Deol, Amrish Puri, Tinu Anand and Paresh Rawal in lead roles.
The story is of how a woman fights against society for justice.
It is a tragedy of this Indian movie plot is that somehow Life imitates Art!
Let us hope that India will not be relying on the well-meaning but Drunken Lawyer to seek justice!
Though judging by Ajay’s letter to the Indian President, maybe Bollywood needs to step in and make a movie before Attitudes will ever change???? If so, Please get on with it!!!!
I know of no better actress to play this brave young woman than Karina Kapoor, or maybe Manisha Koirala ( how about it darling?)
she is styled and her face is shaped like Damini!
Vinanti is a dear friend of mine and she recently met the President of India in New York during an UN-related event
VOICES OF WOMEN WORLDWIDE & VOW-TV’s member in Australia shares the photos of Damini – the girl who was gang-raped …
She was a student
She was 23
Her fault some people say because she boarded the wrong bus
And oh yeah
SHE WAS A GIRL
Six men raped her one by one and then used an iron rod to tear her vagina
Small intestine and large intestine came out
They left her to die on the road
What’s more is that no one even turned to look at her
No one even bothered to throw a shawl on the ill-clad
She can never live a normal married life again
She Went into coma five times since 16th December
She was unconscious
Critical and hasn’t been able to stop crying
But don’t worry
She wasn’t your sister
She wasn’t your daughter
But she could be. The brutality has to stop right here guys
These people deserve capital punishment for their heinous
She died yesterday Saturday 28th
Rest in Peace♥ and I pray that her killers get the WORST punishment possible
This doesn’t only happen in India..
But in every country around the world..
Is this how we treat our women?
It Makes me ashamed to even live on this planet today
If her death Touches YOU & UR against RAPE
If YOU Support RAPE
“IGNORE THIS POST”
COMMENT & SHARE with atleast 10 of YOUR best FRIENDS! Tell them to LIKE COLLINS OKELLO so they can receive daily update from us on this story. The culprits MUST pay for this. I’M FOLLOWING THIS STORY TO THE END TILL DAMINI GETS FULL JUSTICE.
Damini was to marry her boyfriend in February, was shopping for wedding outfits, neighbors say.
And spread amongst Protestors in Hong kong:
**** And Spreading Amongst those from Mainland China …..In simplified Chinese:
Cecilia’s response was: “Vina, isn’t it time somebody took these Stats. and highlight some of these empassioned Open letters to the President of India and ask his administration to “Do something in 2013 about all this?”