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HindustanTimes Wed,22 Oct 2014

City safety audit next on activists’ agenda

Deevakar Anand, Hindustan Times  Gurgaon, April 18, 2012
First Published: 02:19 IST(18/4/2012) | Last Updated: 02:20 IST(18/4/2012)

Close on the heels of the ‘Girlcott’ campaign, a Delhi-based NGO has decided to undertake a security audit to identify “vulnerable spots” in Gurgaon to ensure safety of women. The activists would then submit their findings to the authorities.

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At present, Jagori, the NGO, is working on the methodology of the audit. The aim is to create safe environs for women, where they can work and move around without fear, activists said.

Activists behind the ‘Girlcott’ campaign will support the NGO’s initiative. By tying up with the NGO, Girlcott campaigners are trying to enhance the scope of the movement. According to them, the safety audit may go a long way in ensuring the safety of women. 

The audit will be on the lines of a similar exercise conducted in the national Capital and those conducted internationally by groups like the Women in Cities International (WICI).

The audit will entail a number of volunteers — both men and women — who will visit streets, malls, residential areas and gather responses of women and commuters on safety issues.

“After identifying the troubled spots, we will present a petition to the deputy commissioner and demand action,” said Kalpana Viswanath of the Jagori’s Safe Cities Programme.

Proper lighting, good pavements and presence of hawkers, better public transport, adequate police presence are some of the factors that can build confidence among women.

The groups that participated in the campaign — Let’s Walk Gurgaon, music group Gurgaon Drum Circle and other women groups — have pledged their support to Jagori’s safety audit.

“We will meet this week and decide on the future course of action,” said Richa Dubey who had floated the Girlcott campaign. “The movement cannot end as a symbolic three-day protest. We mean business and will continue to press for the safety of women,” said Sehba Imam of Let’s Walk Gurgaon. The Girlcott campaign was launched from April 13 to 15.


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