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Various governments have changed their travel warnings to restrict travel during this time. To understand how this may impact cover under your policy, please go to our FAQs and select your country of residence. For the latest travel warnings and alerts around the world, read about lockdowns and border restrictions. Mariellen Ward has lived and traveled around India alone, and has only encountered a few uncomfortable incidents. Here, she shares her tips for safe travel, and tell us about some common misunderstandings. But, how safe is India for female travelers?


Crime Science volume 5Article : 6 Cite this article. Metrics details. In developing countries, many more women are seeking education and employment than ly, which has increased the opportunity for sexual harassment in public places. Eve teasing includes cat calling, lewd remarks, and inappropriate sexual contact such as rubbing and fondling. Tolerance of such incidents could lead to more severe forms of abuse and encourage more individuals to participate. Necessary as laws are, they cannot bring about immediate changes in widespread public behaviors, particularly those, such as eve teasing, that are deeply rooted in the culture of a country.

To date there is no systematic research on sexual harassment in public places to assist public authorities and town planners with the development of security measures, especially for college-going women in cities and towns in India. Rapid assessment methodology has been used increasingly, especially in the field of public health, to assist decision-making about appropriate interventions for social problems by examining issues within social and cultural contexts in space and time.

Three methods were employed in this rapid assessment of the problem— focus group discussions with college students, interviews with police officers from stations nearby the campuses and safety audits of the campus surroundings.

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This small exploratory study of eve teasing in India succeeded in promoting understanding of the problem and in providing many suggestions for reducing it. These latter included an extensive inventory of precautions for students, particularly female students to take in order to protect themselves from eve teasing, and a list of preventive suggestions for other stakeholders—the police, local municipalities, transport agencies and Women wants hot sex Delhi California colleges themselves. The study has wider implications for the study of routine precautions, for crime in public space and for the use of rapid assessment techniques in Crime Science.

A declared objective of Crime Science, which distinguishes it from most other criminology, is to bring about reductions in crime. This objective is normally expected to result from a rigorous analysis of a specific crime or disorder problem that identifies deterrent or other opportunity-reducing measures. Many such analyses have been undertaken and published, but they are costly in terms of scarce research resources and they can take a long time to complete.

This approach has limited applicability therefore in developing countries that generally lack the research capacity required. While RAM may fall short of the usual rigor of a scientific assessment, this approach can still produce sufficiently reliable information about specific problems to permit preventive actions to be identified and implemented. In the public health field, it is seen as striking a balance between methodologically appropriate and logistically feasible measures MacIntyre In particular, it is considered to be valuable in developing realistic, time-bound interventions, prioritizing the most affected parts of a city or region, identifying high-risk populations, places, or sectors that need attention, and developing targeted interventions to bring the most benefit.

This is crucial to the research process in evaluative studies, but is all too often ignored. However, it is now used increasingly to assist decision-making about appropriate interventions for social problems by examining issues within social and cultural contexts in space and time Needle et al. For example, RAM was used to study user—dealer populations in a Colombia, to explore patterns of drug use and associated behaviors of overdose, crime, violence, and the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections Ross In a further example, RAM was used in Pretoria, South Africa, to understand drug use and associated health and systemic risks, such as unprotected sex, violence, rape and tattooing with contaminated equipment dos Santos et al.

The ultimate purpose was to facilitate the long-term planning of drug-use prevention and the development of appropriate intervention and rehabilitation programs in correctional institutions.

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While scholarly rigor is important for criminology and Crime Science in developing and testing theories to guide scientific research, Clarke has argued that the same urgent pressures to produce relevant information for preventive purposes exists in these fields as much as in public health:. This conduct demeans young women and girls and can harm them psychologically, physically and socially.

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It merges at the more serious end into severe assaults, rape and even murder Footnote 2. The problem was projected onto the world stage with the horrifying abduction and rape on Dec 16, of a year-old female medical student, who took a private bus in front of a mall in New Delhi around 9 p. After watching a movie with a friend.

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She was gang raped on the moving bus and died after 10 days of suffering from severe injuries of her genitals and intestines. The case led to widespread outrage in India and resulted in new federal legislation deed to punish these cases. Necessary as laws are, they cannot bring about immediate changes in a public behavior as widespread as eve teasing, which is deeply rooted in the culture of a country and deeply engrained in local public and the criminal justice system the law and the police.

The street harassment of young women is compounded by lingering gender inequality in India. It is true that young women are venturing forth outside their homes in ever increasing s to obtain education or work, but girls and boys are still socialized under different gender role expectations. Women are raised to be submissive and sons are likely to be given priority over daughters in economic and social arrangements, including work and marriage.

Many parents still blame their daughters for their sexual victimization, which they believe will reduce her marriage prospects. Consequently, many victims do not talk about the physical and mental abuse that they endure outside their homes.

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In view of the slow pace of cultural change, measures to deal with eve teasing should be put in place to reduce the opportunities for these crimes to occur. This will involve educating young women about the precautions they can take to reduce their risks of becoming victims as well as identifying measures that might be taken by the police, by local municipalities, by public transport and by college administrators to reduce the opportunities for sexual harassment of young women on the commute to college.

Identifying such measures will require a fuller understanding of these forms of sexual harassment, which research has yet to provide. As one step to providing this understanding this paper reports a rapid assessment of the problem.

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The Indian Government collates crime reports from the various States in an annual report Crime in India. Whatever the reasons, Table 1drawn from Crime in Indiaillustrates the difficulty of drawing any conclusions about the scale of the problem.

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Much of the data is missing, but a larger problem is that totals show little consistency from year to year, whereas crime data usually change slowly over much longer periods of time. In fact, the inadequacies of the official statistics on sexual harassment in public places helps to make the case for undertaking a rapid assessment of the problem.

As stated earlier, a of earlier federal and state laws had already been passed intended to protect women from harassment in public, and the problem of harassment of women had been the subject of an unusually large study undertaken by Jagori, a feminist organization, with support from the Government of India and U. Women A sample of women and men were interviewed.

The study revealed widespread harassment endured by Indian women in public and semi-public settings with school and college students in the 15—19 age-groups being particularly vulnerable. Women try to ensure their own safety by avoiding certain places, staying indoors after dark, dressing carefully, and carrying defensive weapons such as pepper spray and safety pins. The study recommended policies related to urban planning and de of public spaces, policing of public transport, victim support, raising public awareness of the problem and toughened laws.

Using Rapid Assessment Methodology, the present study aimed to provide insight into the nature and patterns of eve teasing and to identify and describe the characteristics of eve teasing hot spots. The ultimate objective was to identify 1 routine precautions that women students might take to protect themselves from victimization during the commute to and from college and 2 improved security that stakeholders, such as municipalities, transport authorities, the police and college administrators might implement to lessen the risks of eve teasing.

To this end, we also buy houses in safe neighborhoods, invest in burglar alarms and firearms, and avoid dangerous places and people. Similarly, schools, factories, offices, shops, and many other organizations and agencies routinely take a host of precautions to safeguard themselves, their employees, and their clients from crime. In terms of the preventive suggestions yielded, the most important of the three rapid assessment methods were the focus group discussions. These were undertaken with undergraduate male 35 and female students aged 19—21 years from six local autonomous colleges 3 all-women and 3 co-ed in and around Chennai, which teach arts and science.

Focus groups have high face validity and serve: 1 to obtain insight into a new area of research, 2 to investigate topics where opinions or attitudes are conditional, 3 to gather additional information to prepare for a larger scale study and 4 to bridge research and policy Stewart and Shamdasani ; Krueger ; Barbour and Kitzinger ; Marshall and Rossman PCVC identified the colleges to be included in the study and arranged a meeting between the author and administrators from each college to discuss the study.

The administrators not only approved the research, but also deated a faculty member from each college to help arrange the study in their campuses. Without such cooperation it would have been impossible to hold these focus groups. These were originally planned to consist of 10 students from each college, but the college administrators suggested there should be at least 30 students in the focus group. This was partly because of the importance of the problem, but also to familiarize students with research methodologies used in studying problems such as eve teasing.

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Only volunteers who gave verbal consent to take part in the focus groups were included. The names of the participants and their colleges were not recorded to ensure anonymity. The discussion at each college took an average of 2 h. It was facilitated by the author in both English and Tamil the local language. She began by talking about the importance of dealing with sexual harassment in public places before proceeding with the questions for the focus group. The level of participation was high.

Even those, especially women students, who did not participate in the beginning made their points at the end. As a further step to encourage open discussion, the discussions were not tape-recorded.

Footnote 4 Instead, two research assistants supplied by PCVC took notes during the discussion in a format that facilitated data analysis. When the focus group discussion was over, the author met with the two research assistants to ensure that the record of the discussion was complete and accurate. The second rapid assessment method used in this study consisted of interviews with 30 men and women officers from six police stations near the study colleges to learn about their perspectives on police efforts to deal with eve teasing.

Permission was obtained from the Chennai Police Commissioner to undertake these interviews on the condition that neither the officers nor the stations were identified in the report.

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The author was allowed to spend time in each station where she interviewed whichever officers were present, in small groups of four to six. Those interviewed comprised inspectors, senior constables and constables. These group interviews were more formal than the focus group discussion with students.

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A semi-structured questionnaire guided the interviews to provide a detailed of 1 The challenges in enforcing the sexual harassment laws including the arrest of perpetrators2 Measures routinely taken to prevent eve teasing near college campuses and 3 Measures that ought to be taken. The interviews took an hour and half in each station and a research assistant recorded the answers. The third rapid assessment method employed in the study consisted of safety audits that were conducted of the campus and its immediate surroundings to identify hot spots of eve teasing and associated spatial features conducive to sexual harassment.

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Their ultimate goal is to improve the physical environment in ways that reduce the opportunities for crime and disorder including sexual harassment or sexual assaults Butler-Kisber When a space is made safe for the most vulnerable of users generally girls and womenit in turn becomes safe for all users. They are especially useful in identifying unsafe places because traditional risk calculations tend to be based on reported crimes, which undercount sexual offenses TTC et al.

Rapid assessment of “eve teasing” (sexual harassment) of young women during the commute to college in india

Safety audits of the area immediately surrounding the campus, including train stations and bus stops used by students, were undertaken for each college. It would have been preferable to have involved students from each college in undertaking the audits because it is they who are familiar with their surroundings, but this was precluded by the difficulties of gaining permission to involve them and to train them in procedures.

The audits were guided by a straightforward protocol with 9 items that included overall impressions of the campus surroundings, adequacy of lighting, sightlines, isolation from being seen or heard, nearby land uses; public transport stops, de of bus shelters, maintenance of the areas observed and suggested improvements. The findings of the study are summarized below for each of the three rapid assessment methods employed.

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Given the informality of the methods a detailed presentation of findings would not be appropriate. These questions generated the themes for describing the nature of eve teasing. The brief examples provided of answers are supplemented in Table 2 by fuller statements made by individual students.

This includes a description of incidents that they have experienced as victims, have heard about or have personally come across.

The following constitutes a summary of the recurring themes coded actions involved:. Where does eve teasing occur? Sometimes the sequence of events takes place in several locations dependent on the mobility of victims. Victims are usually alone, but eve teasing sometimes occurs when victims are in a group of women and often during the commute to work or school or recreation places.

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