New Year’s Eve in the city of Bengaluru this year was marked by pure disaster as the media continued to flash headlines about the ‘mass molestation’. A huge group of men had groped and assaulted women on the streets of Brigade Road as the clock struck twelve — the city its citizens knew, was left in tatters as they were all shaken to the core. The streets grew silent as everyone scurried home before the sun could even set. As fingers began to be pointed, it would have done us all some good if we understood that the solution to this problem doesn’t just lie within our society’s legal measures or heightened security; it also comes down to the very mentality of our society as a whole.
Indian societal expectations have created a rigid set of unspoken rules for a majority of us, which restrict us mentally as well as physically. It frowns upon those who step out of line, as well as those who speak up against it; often making victims feel like they were wronged because they ‘deserved’ it or ‘asked’ for it. This toxic space makes it hard for women/men to move on or even understand how to — which is when a human rights lawyer decided to create a safe space for victims and loved ones to come forward and share their stories. How Revealing is an online platform that doubles as a strong support system backed by mental health professionals as well as gender based violence maps all over the country.
The website is currently running two very important campaigns, one namely ‘#HowWillWeRespond’ that revolves around positive actions taken by samaritans in similar situations and their accounts in order to inspire others to intervene safely in case of a predicament. The second campaign (affiliated with the Quint) is called ‘#WhyWomenDon’tReport’ which requires victims of harassment to come forward with their experiences. It came into place after the infamous TVF harassment case in June, 2017. Women speak of why they don’t report and the stigma that revolves around victim blaming.
The founder of the website on multiple occasions has reiterated that normalizing sexual assault is the root cause of the problem. In light of the #MeToo campaign, emotions need to be perceived and reacted to in a proper manner, the vicious cycle of post-traumatic stress disorders and depression can lead to suicidal tendencies and self-harming. She hopes to tackle this by collecting incidents and encouraging victims to share their experiences with the urge that the community shall become aware and sensitize themselves.
Be a part of the movement by visiting their website here.
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