Women in New Delhi were surveyed about their experiences traveling in a specific area of the city. Over 1/3rd faced sexual harassment and over 1/3 faced theft and nearly 1/2 felt threatened when in the area.
“Women reported it to be one of the unsafe areas (in the city) especially after dark. They faced various forms of sexual harassment like catcalling, groping or lewd gestures. Open drug usage was another issue,” the survey pointed out.
The recommendations to make the area safer include traffic monitoring, better pavements, and monitoring of drug usage on the roads. The government has plans to implement many of them.
This survey is part of a larger study of four cities (Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, Delhi in India, Rosario in Argentina, and Petrozavodsk in Russia) focused on making cities safer for women called the Gender Inclusive Cities Project. It is sponsored by Women in Cities International and the UN Trust Fund.
I’m glad these organizations are addressing this important issue – there will not be gender equality unless women and men can safely access public spaces – and I plan to learn more about their initiatives. I hope the Gender Inclusive Cities project can eventually address other major cities around the world too.