Women, and men, took out a march in Bengaluru on Saturday to “reclaim” public spaces as a part of the inaugural #IWillGoOut march.
“Not only women, but also sexuality minorities and transgenders, and Dalit women are not allowed to be a part of public spaces,” said Priyanka Srinivasa, the national coordinator of #IWillGoOut.
The movement, Srinivasa said, began with a Facebook group which was created following the reports of mass molestation on New Year’s Eve. “We decided to create a celebration to show that we are here too.”
Soumya Bhat,who is also associated with the movement, said the alleged New Year’s eve misbehaviour was just one of many instances.
“Harassment isn’t at all taken seriously, and we want it to be taken as seriously as rape. The reason is that women are always blamed for what they wear, what they do,” Bhat said.
The march began at the railway station and culminated in a celebration at Freedom Park. It also hosted several cultural events, such as poetry recitations and music shows, highlighting the injustices women faced in the country.
A petition seeking to make public spaces safe again was also signed at the event, and will be handed over to the state home minister and the director general of police.
Srinivasa said more #IWillGoOut events will be held not only in Bengaluru but across the country.