Millennium Post

Girls taking self-defence lessons to fend off eve-teasers on Delhi's streets

NEW DELHI: "When I go to the shop, boys in the group taunt me making lewd comments, such situation I face often when I am out on the streets," were not only the words of the 15-year-old Shalini (name changed) but also more than 60 such girls, who have been connected to the street of the national capital, raised the same issue. Seeing the situation, Delhi Police have now started giving them self-defence training so that they can protect themselves from the abuse.
These girls live in shelter homes, clusters and work on the street by selling things or picking rags. Talking to Millennium Post, the children living in the street stated that before training they had to face several cases of abuse, some people used to taunt them or touch them inappropriately. "Sometimes alcoholic persons or some youths start taunting as we are most vulnerable," said another street girl Puja (name changed), who lives in the area of South East Delhi.
Seeing the situation, the Special Police Unit for Women and Children (SPUWAC) of Delhi Police now has been giving training to more than 100 such girls in five different places in the capital. In Hazrat Nizamuddin area, two Delhi Police women constables Pooja Tomar and Pooja have been giving the training to the girls. More than 60 girls are being given training of moves called 'bus attack and hand grip'. "Handgrip aims at saving girls from kidnapping," said a trainer.
When asked about the training, children stated that they were very much happy as this has come as a boon for them. "'Parents told me to join the training as this will help in our protection sometimes. I have to go alone and if anything happens I can protect myself," said the girl. Girls aged between 8-17 years have been continuously coming for the training.
One such parent whose four daughters are being trained said that the learning will protect them. "My daughters asked me whether she can join I said yes learning is important," said Nisha, mother of the children.
An NGO Chetna has approached Delhi Police, raising the issue of children living in street. Sanjay Gupta from the NGO Chetna stated that girls on street face all kinds of abuse. "Car drivers try to pull them in a car, or girls at station lured for the sexual offer. Self-defence training will not only give confidence to girls, but also give the strong warning to the locals," he said. This initiative is a part of project Blue Umbrella, which aims to ensure the protection of children on streets.

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