Women now reporting cases of violence

New Delhi, Dec 16: Many things may not have changed since the Dec 16 gang rape but the way women are breaking their shackles and reporting cases of violence against them without fearing character assassination is a good development, say activists.

“It is amazing to see how women are coming forward and reporting cases of violence even at the cost of social criticism and character assassination. They now muster all the courage and come forward to talk,” Ranjana Kumari, director, Centre for Social Research, told IANS Monday.

Echoing the same feeling, Kamla Bhasin, founder of Jagori, said: “It is not only about women coming forward but they are now raising voice against powerful men like Asaram Bapu and Tarun Tejpal. Asaram was doing this for decades but now, women are no longer scared.”

The number of rape cases reported in the capital has doubled while the number of sexual assault cases has multiplied four fold.

“Definitely, women are now much more willing to come forward. They now feel empowered and are not hesitant to lodge a complaint,” Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime Branch) Ravindra Yadav told IANS.

“Importantly now, police officers have also been sensitised to register such complaints and take prompt action,” added Yadav.

However, some activists feel there is much to be done to translate and witness the change among women in rural areas.

“Definitely, Nirbhaya has inspired women to come forward but then it needs a lot of time to bring women from the marginal community to take a stand,” activist Julie Thekkudan told IANS.