In a bid to encourage women to report incidents of sexual harassment to the police, non-government organisation Akshara, on Friday distributed whistles to the public at Dadar as part of its ‘Seeti bajao, awaaz uthao’ campaign. The event was part of the ‘Blow the Whistle’ campaign launched jointly by the Hindustan Times and Akshara to make the city safer for women. It will focus on spreading awareness about using Mumbai police’s 103 help line for women, elderly and children.
Around 100 students took out a rally near Dadar station asking pedestrians and commuters to burst balloons that contained whistles. Everyone who burst a balloon was then briefed about how the 103 helpline works and how a police mobile van is sent to the spot after a complaint is made. Volunteers also circulated a signature petition against sexual harassment.
Last November, in a survey conducted by HT and Akshara, 95% of the women respondents said they had been sexually harassed or assaulted. “We plan to take this campaign to those parts of the city which women marked as unsafe in our survey,” said Nandita Shah, co-director, Akshara.