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'SlutWalk' Supporters Attend New Delhi Protest

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  • Slutwalk
    (Reuters)
By Ivana Kvesic, Christian Post Reporter
August 1, 2011|3:18 pm

Dozens of protestors took to the streets of New Delhi to protest sexual violence against women Sunday.

Women, girls, and around 100 men took to the streets of New Delhi carrying posters that read "Walk of NO Shame" or "Stop Staring: This is Not an Invitation to Rape Me."

Rape is considered the fasting growing crime in India and reported cases of rape have gone up 678 percent in 30 years.

SlutWalk is a movement stemming out of Toronto that defies the notion that a woman's dress can explain or excuse rape and harassment.

The protest movement was established in April following a crime prevention talk where a police officer stated, "Women should avoid dressing like sluts in order to not be victimized."

The protest movement has taken place in cities across the world and has now found a much needed home in India.

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India faces an enormous problem with harassment and violence against women, particularly in its overcrowded cities where economic development and modernization collide with patriarchic cultural norms.

Chief organizer of the protest, Umang Sabarwal, a college student in New Delhi, said of the event, "There was a feeling that something really needs to be done because we all know that Delhi is highly unsafe for women."

The situation of violence and harassment towards women in India is nothing new, however, it has been getting increased attention in recent years.

One particular case sparked public outcry and led to the establishment of new laws. The case occurred last year when a young woman was gang raped after being dropped off only a few hundred yards away from her home by a car service.

The situation is so dangerous for women that the New Delhi police now require that car services drop women off at their doorsteps and also require that cars install GPS systems in order to track them to make sure that they are bringing women home safe.

Public transportation also poses a large threat to women in terms of groping and harassment and some metro cars are now designated solely for women's use.

India's problem with violence against women has also recently been highlighted in a survey by TrustLaw.

India landed in the top five "most dangerous countries for women"; in the number four position.

TrustLaw's survey indicated risk factors for women and used gender experts to assess the conditions on the ground for women in countries across the world.

The survey covered health, economic/discrimination, cultural, tribal, or religious factors, sexual violence, non-sexual violence, and trafficking.

India topped the list of countries that included Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Pakistan, and Somalia, in terms of the prevalence of human trafficking of women and girls.

According to former Home Secretary, Madhukar Gupta, more than 100 million people in the country are said to have some involvement with trafficking.

India also faces problems with female foeticide, child marriage, and high levels of domestic servitude.

 

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