Tuesday, July 21, 2009

ms. ramya u.s.a

Meera stood at the bus stop waiting for 60B. She usually got off from work by 7pm, today she had been delayed by her boss, Meera, I need the presentation within the next hour he had said. Sunil usually came to pick her up on such days. But this week he was in Cochin on a business tour and she knew she had to finish this presentation and be at the bus stop by 8pm to catch the 9pm bus.

The bus stop looked so different at night, during the day it seemed like a small country teeming with life; hordes of people from all walks of life jostling with each other to get into the bus and grab a seat, now it looked like a desert. Meera saw that there were hardly any ladies at the stop, well, atleast I don't have to jostle to get in or fight for seats. A loud noise made Meera turn around, she saw 4 men throwing Limca bottles on the ground, they were laughing loudly and obviously looked like they were having a good time. Must be drunk, why don't they go some place else? Oh God, where is that bus?

As the bus roared to a start, the smell of diesel hit her nostrils. She inhaled it with eyes closed and slight smile on her lips, she was one of the few people who liked petrol-diesel smell. Meera noticed that she was the only woman in the bus, she also saw that the drunk men were with her in the bus. She pulled her bag close to her chest and waited for her stop. Suddenly, she felt someone tug at the sari, she saw that one of those men was sitting behind her and leering at her. She clutched her pallu tightly and ignored the man. Soon, three men surrounded her and started passing lewd remarks. Just two more stops thought Meera and I will be home. Then they started touching her; they pulled her cheeks and pinched her thighs. Meera had had enough don't you have a sister or mother at home? Have you no shame? Do you want me to call the police? What do yo... she stopped abruptly when she saw one man in the group brandish a knife. Oh God somebody please help me she screamed, begging the other passengers for help. None of them moved, it was as if someone had cast a spell on them and turned them into stone. When the bus driver finally mustered courage, the damage was already done. Meera was stabbed twice in the shoulder and the men had escaped with her purse and whatever jewelry they could grab from her. Meera is now making a slow recovery at GM hospital. The physical wounds may heal but will the emotional scars go away?

This report is fine, now go find out what others have to say about this incident, my editor barked at me. The best place to start would be her neighbours I thought. Aaahh Meera I saw her on that morning when she left home, she was wearing a sleeveless blouse. In my opinion, men are lecherous, and we as women should dress appropriately and not give these men any opportunities to take advantage of us. If she had dressed properly this would have never happened said Kalyani who lived next to Meera's. Who asked her to take a bus at that hour? She could have paid extra and taken an auto. She has only herself to blame for this said Prakash the man who owned a coffee shop near the bus stop.

I always thought freedom meant having the right to live life as one wishes. Has India and it citizens really gained independence?

This post's title is inspired by a ms. ramya u.s.a who wrote in her comment (in the Delhi article):
ramya,usa,says:These incidents happen everywhere. Let girls and women dress in decent manner which will not attract men who are in sexual need. These days women wear anything which was used to cover only head or handkeys... Girls and women why do you bother men and put yourself in trouble. It is certain this will happen again somewhere sometime.
[23 Jun, 2009 0341hrs IST]

and to Haris who wrote:
Haris,Delhi,says:She was going from Seelampur to Shahdra at 8pm? WHy couldnt she take Delji Metro? So uch safer and convenient, for two more rupees. Its inexplicable!
[23 Jun, 2009 0302hrs IST]


  1. nicely narrated. i dont know whats right and whats wrong. i for sure believe that everyone has the right to dress as she/he would like, but it makes common sense to not dress skimpily when one is sure she would be late at night to come back home or would attract wrong sort of people.

    Obviously, one can dress in sleeveless or in micro mini while going for a party or going out with husband/ boyfriend in a car, but not in a public transport system. what say.

  2. Oh man.

    People like the ones you mentioned make me SICK..more than the molestors.

    So the four men were absolutely right in molesting her and it was HER fault to take the bus at that hour?!!! First and foremost we should find this haris and ramya and give them two tight slaps!

    And what were the other people doing in the bus?! Did they realise that if 20 of them got together and ganged up against the four men, they could have successfully thrown them out of the bus!!

    Man, some indians disgust me to the core. These people (ms ramya and haris) should really keep their opinions to themselves!

    Sorry i got all worked up. But this just pissed me off.

    First time here.

  3. Ahem, I am trying to be politically correct here.

    The people in the bus disgust me more than the ramyas and the harises. Also, I really dont have the accurate picture of the dress the girl was wearing.So really wont say anything about her attire. But it is actually sensible to dress with more caution when one is travelling at night and that too in those areas you are talking about, Seelampur and Shahdara. We can shout about women's rights but these areas are not where people who believe in gender equality reside. These are the rough neighbourhoods of Delhi.( I guess equivalent to New York's seedy areas.) Actually the metro was a better option.

  4. reads Incident comments date 23rd june
    reads Sj's post 21st july

    only shows how the incident left you troubled..we often read and forget, we tend to turn away.
    But not you..thats wat i best like about you, your ability to stand when the rest confine to the easy way out..ignore and forget.

  5. I love the style of writing!

    I'm not going to comment on the topic, coz my blood boils and I will say something rude.

  6. Dictating terms and rules are what most of us do after an incident. Every time such an incident occurs people say the same..She should have not done that..I really don't know what was going on in the minds of all those people sitting in the bus?? where they scared or just enjoying a show of a woman being molested?? All I can say is it's disgusting and it does leave an everlasting scar in your mind...

  7. Ya, this is an incident which occurs daily somewhere around. But this kind molestations should be strictly punished. Its ok, that women should dress decently. But it happens to those who dressed good too..! This is really a sad sight!

  8. Nothing..i want such men to be stabbed to death, instead, i would stab them to death...Man, i live alone, i make a living of my own and i live with these anxieties every moment...Take these words man, dresses can do the least to arouse a man with bad/ lewd intentions. And taking a metro or an auto, i dnt think is an alternate/safer option to avoid such incidents, if it has happened in a bus with 10 more people atleast, it could have happened while travelling in an auto alone, or may be the extra 30 people in the metro too wnt have bothered to move from their seat...people out there, which includes both men and women have to first respect each other, with that might the word "Freedom" will get its term rightly defined..

    Man, i get mad with such incidents...i feel helpless, i feel insecure...

  9. That was a jolting post,SJ. Such incidents are not rare,sadly.I'm sure you must have heard about TV journalist Soumya Viswanathan's murder in Delhi a few months back?During that course of time many such incidents had happened.And its still happening.Its a sorry state of affairs.

    When people like ramya usa,kalyani say women need to dress appropriately what do they mean exactly?Are they saying by wearing a saree or salwar-suit,or a burqa would make women get away from such abhorrous situations?
    Do they really think what those savages did to Meera was justified?Then in that case they need to wake up.'Cos even people who dress 'appropriately' are letched at,stabbed,assaulted and scarred for life. Filthy men will still prevail irrespective of what you are wearing,unless we stand up and pluck those savages out from their roots.I feel the onlookers like the ones in the bus where Meera was attacked,are as much to blame as those attackers,because they are encouraging the acts by staying quite or not raising an alarm.

  10. First I thought, like Nandini Vishwanath, that I should not leave a comment because people like this disgust me and make me really, really angry and my poor hubby usually has to take the brunt, besides I start rambling meaninglessly.. but I guess I need to comment...Firstly, though dressing sensibly could be wise- rapes do happen in Arab nations too, where women are covered from head to toe- so what is the justification for that?
    By dressing in a certain way a woman was "asking for it", poor man, what could he do? Aaaargh, I wish i could beat up the people with this viewpoint...do women go around molesting bare-chested men???
    You know, when girls from North-east come to Delhi they are given printouts from the govt...saying that they should not dress provocatively, because it is their way of dressing that causes rapes!! of course nobody tries to stop the monsters who commit such crime. just control the liberties of the women, that is so much more easy...I don't even know if I am making sense, because I am pissed...really pissed with all ramya,usa and Haris,Delhi Inc.!!!

  11. I had read your earlier post too on this, i really dont know what to comment, such incidents make me feel angry and sad..those people in the bus disgust me..

  12. i hope my comment dint get lost..

  13. What ever the bus driver and the conductor were doing,sleeping when meera was asking for help, sick people they don't move until these incidents happens to there close relative.
    Everyone has right to wear what they want to.Small kids are molested and raped what they were wearing which provoked the molesters to do such a shameful act.
    Coming to people until they encounter they won't be knowing what had actually happened in the bus to meera.Sick people

  14. Hmmmm....after reading post then comments....one thing i strongly observe by being in a fast changing and ever growing metro....is wearing anything is nothing to do with this type of incidents......after hearing and seeing whole lot of things like this i can see girls coming out to eat pani poori or chaat at 10.30 in the night wearing night dress or shorts.....and most of the times incidents like this happen to well dressed females.....i think the people who try to molest or think to molest are also scared of the females who dress modern or pose modern.......in the end it is a bad timing.....it may happen to anyone....if she is with her hubby then if those drunk people kept him on knife edge....then what is he going to do.....how long is he going to fight??????? it is not that she is wearing something that that arouse them......if she is fully covered also...things like this happen.....can u trust a drunk person?

  15. We have this horrible 'blame the victim' mentality especially when it comes to crimes against women! I don't understand the mentality of people who try to find a reason why the girl was attacked! We hear of 6 month old babies raped - pray , what did they do to invite it? Surely, they were not being 'provocative'??

    Makes me mad that such attacks on women happen! Even more mad when I hear people like ramya. justifying/finding excuses for it!

  16. Unless men like those are severely punished and made examples of, these crimes will continue. And it has nothing to do with what a woman wears. Even if she was in a burqa, it probably would have happened. And incidents of women who were raped/molested being ostracized or blamed are far too many! And the molesters get away scot free! Really disgusting!


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