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Women in Bangalore need our help now!

From Bishakha Datta:

Women in Bangalore need our help now!

Women in Bangalore are facing serious violence and attacks - for wearing jeans, going out in the streets, fighting back the moral police etc.

We need to stop these attacks; I have drafted a protest letter and am
pasting this below with email addresses.

Each of you, please take a few minutes to email the letter to all the eight addresses - edit, amend or adapt the letter as you see fit. Please send it to Karnataka governor, who is not BJP.

And please email out widely to friends, listserves, facebook, everyone.
Bishakha

Dear Sir/Madam, 1 March 2009

Over the last two weeks, several women have been violently attacked in Bangalore.

On 28 Feb at 10.30 pm, Sanjana got hit by two men on a bike who slowed down, socked her on her jaw and fled away. On 24 Feb, Lakshmi was attacked at around 9 pm by four men who punched her, hit her, and abused her for wearing jeans. On 17 Feb, two men chased Geetanjali’s car at 1.30 pm. One chased her with a large stone as she ran to a friend’s house for refuge.

That week, Jasmine was attacked by four middle-aged men at 11.30 am when her auto broke down. They physically assaulted and tried to disrobe her while yelling obscenities.

More than 80 attacks and cases of moral policing have been reported from all over Karnataka in the last six months.[1] Two women have committed suicide after humiliation from right-wing forces. On 12 Feb, Vanita killed herself after Bajrang Dal activists attacked her. On 11 Feb, Ashwini killed herself after Venur Bajrang activists attacked her and her friend Salim.

The police have not taken meaningful steps to stop or prevent this violence, to arrest the perpetrators, or to ensure the safety of all women in Bangalore and Karnataka.

These attacks are crimes against women. They are legal offences. They are neither isolated events nor trivial incidents of ‘eve-teasing’. They are part of a series of attacks inflicted on women in the name of ‘morality’, attacks that are escalating as women resist and fight back.

It is the core responsibility of the state and city police to ensure that
public spaces are kept safe for all. Women across class barriers – from
powrakarmikas to garment factory workers to students and young professionals in the corporate sector – have today become vulnerable targets on the streets of Karnataka.

As an organization fighting for the rights of all women, we demand
that the Bangalore and Karnataka state and city police immediately:
* Take punitive action to ensure that the attackers are punished by the law;
* Take preventive action to ensure that no more women are attacked in Bangalore and Karnataka;
* Take enabling action to ensure that streets and public spaces in Bangalore and Karnataka are safe for all women to use and enjoy as a matter of right.

Sincerely,

Name/org

EMAIL ADDRESSES
1)Dr. VS Acharya
Home Minister - Karnataka State
Email: vsacharya@gmail.com

2)P. Chidambaram
Ministry of Home Affairs, North Block
Email: websitemhaweb@nic.in
or post on his website at http://www.pchidambaram.org/AskMe.html

3)Dr. Ajai Kumar Singh
DG & IGP
Karnataka State Police Headquarters
Nrupathunga Road
Bangalore
Tel: 080 22211803, 22942999

Email: needed send hard copy

4) Justice Subray Rama Nayak
Chair Person
Karnataka State Human Rights Commission
4th floor, 5th phase
Multistoreyed building, Bangalore 560 001.
Fax: 080-22392206, 22392207
Email: needed send hard copy

5) Rameshwar Thakur
Governor Of Karnataka
Email: rbblr@vsnl.com

6)B S Yeddyurappa
Chief Minister, Karnakata
Email: cm@kar.nic.in

7)Renuka Chowdhury
Minister for Women and Child Development
Email: min-wcd@nic.in, and
renuka@sansad.nic.in.

8)National Commission for Women
Email: ncw@nic.in
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[1] Vimochana, a women’s group in Bangalore, has documented these cases from Sept 2009 from the following Kannada publications: Karavali Ale, Jaya Kirana and Vartha Bharathi.