The “Nirbhaya Scheme” initiated with the help of central government to ensure the safety of women and children in the highly literate society of Kerala will be inaugurated by the UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi on 15th February. According to the project plan, every Panchayath/local self government will have 10 Nirbhaya volunteers each. These volunteers will make frequent visits to the houses where lone ladies, widows and old aged lives. They will make a check to know their well being and if required get police aid.
The government of Kerala has sanctioned 7.5crore rupees towards this programme. As per the new scheme, local bodies, Jagratha Samithis and Kudumbasree will be at the core of grassroots interventions related to prevention, identification and rescue. They will also take responsibility for the rehabilitation of cases of sexual violence and sex trafficking.
Jagratha Samithis, under the Kerala Women’s Commission, at panchayat/local self government level will be the core committees for implementing the Nirbhaya programme. In addition, there will be district Nirbhaya committees and a state level coordination committee which will closely review the status of the programme and monitor the functioning of local bodies, departments and institutions.
Photo Courtesy: The Hindu
Good News for women, a new system for the safety of women is to come soon in our public transportation system! Central Government has approved the plans to establish CCTV and GPS system inside public transportation facilities like bus, train etc for the safety of women. Rupees 1405 crores have been earmarked for the establishment of this project.
The aim of this project is the safety of women. The system will assist in reaching help to women in danger. A fund named “Nirbhaya” was established in memory of the girl who died after the cruel gang rape inside a running bus in Delhi in December 2012. The Nirbhaya Fund is finally utilised with the implementation of security systems inside the public transportation, this project will be implemented in 53 cities in two years.
During the first phase of this project, the security systems will be established in 32 cities and later on in 21 cities. Let’s see how far this project is going to help women in the future!
We Malayalees seem to have an uncanny knack in choosing only the not so desirable traits of western culture by conveniently turning a blind eye to the virtues of their life style. For instance, not many of us in Kerala think that is necessary to stand in a queue while boarding a bus or follow the road rules on a day out unlike our Western counterparts. However aping their dressing style and fast food styles are some of the many things that come naturally to Keralites. The Westerners dress in jeans to beat the severe cold and when we blindly ape this dressing style, we not only put ourselves in an uncomfortable situation, but also make a mockery of ourselves in the hot and humid Kerala weather.
Many feel that the outrageous dress sense of girls has played a big role in pushing up the women abuse cases in India in recent times. The fact that a woman is raped in India every 20 minutes in itself shows the vulnerability of women in the modern society. Modesty of women is at stake at work places, public parks, railway stations, bus stops and even inside their own homes.
Here are some handy tips for women to prevent rape
- Scream for help, seek public attention and get way from danger immediately.
- Defend yourselves with pepper spray ; learn martial arts steps like karate for self defence
- Avoid dimly lit spots, isolated areas and small alley ways
- Be alert to what is happening around you; do not use headphones while on road.
- Dress modestly and make sure that you wear clothes that do not attract unwanted attention from men .
- Use your cell phone as a safety tool to remain connected with your family, friends or even the police if the situation warrants.
- Do not accept money, sweets or snacks from people you do not know. It could be laced with sedatives.
- Do not share personal information with people whom you meet online or during trips in a train or in public places. There is never a good reason to meet up with a person whom you have never met in person.
- Walk confidently so that it may put off the stalkers on the prowl looking for soft targets.
- Never accept lifts in cars or bikes from people you do not know.
- Last but not the least, mothers can play an important role in teaching their daughters to dress sensibly and fashionably without being obscene from a young age.
As the rising instances of rape and abuse against women is snowballing into a major social issue, it is high time that women stay alert to ward off the risks and to remain safe and secure.
Though it might sound a bit weird, there seems to be a connection between meat eating habits of Keralaites and the surging instances of rape in the State going by the opinion of the Arya Samaj scholar Swami Agnivesh.
If it is true, Kerala has a sound reason for worry. With the state’s meat production shooting up at a staggering 342 percent increase in the last 1 year and booze flowing freely, there is every reason for the women in Kerala to be on their guard. However, Criminologist James Wadakkamcherry reiterates that the rape cases in Kerala have infact dropped slightly in recent times.
Though there is no proper research data on meat and its effects on libido, there is a common notion that rape cases are more prevalent in meat eating communities. However statistics prove that Madhya Pradesh which leads in juvenile rapes in the country is one of the lowest meat-consuming states in the country. Rape cases are also reported from countries like Saudi Arabia where there is a blanket ban on liquour.
As opinions and counter opinions continue unabated , many gourmets have come up with solid facts to support that meat eating has nothing to do with libido. Most of the aphrodisiacs that are sold in the market are made of green leaves and roots of herbs like ginseng, safedi musli and ashwagandha.
No matter whether this discussion will bring down the rape cases or not, the fact remains that rapists can never be just meat eaters or boozers, but are mentally sick patients who need counselling and treatment.
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Cochin corporation, has come up with various plans to ensure the safety of women in the city. The project named ‘Sabala’, will include various proposals to make the city women friendly. This time bound project is expected to go a long way in solving most of the problems faced by women. This is for the first time that a Corporation has come up with a separate budget outlay for the welfare of women.
Some of the projects include :-
- Extending free medical care for families with only female members. The education expenses of children of such families will also be fully covered in these schemes.
- A modern lodging facility for women will be set up in the city to ensure safe stay for those women travelers who reach the City for various purposes. Apart from an all women staff team, the lodge will also have various other facilities like online reservations, taxi and other services.
- Kudumbashree Women only Buses run by Metro Cochin Transport Corporation (MCTC) is another novel venture envisaged in the project. The buses will have an all women crew.
- To arrest instances of child abuse, a team of three counselors will be set up in each school who will try to protect the students from the modern vices like internet scams and exploitation of students through mobile phones and social network.
Once this project is fully implemented, the business capital of Kerala will have an envious repute of being a women friendly City in all aspects.
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Cochin, the emerging business capital of Kerala has a floating population comprising of people from various parts of India and even abroad, which could make it a target for unlawful activities. Though Malayalees have so far only come up with instances like kidnapping on reel screen and not real life, the possibilities when this familiar scene in many Malayalam movies can become a threat in real life too cannot be ruled out.
In an innovative method to stall such a remote possibility three engineering graduates have developed an easy downloadable software for android phones. The trio Doney P Dev, and his friends Rizwin Azeez Naina(TechLead) and Mahesh J Nair, who has set up their own independent company, August Info Solutions has come up with the Hello Kerala software that can automatically locate the nearest police station to where you are and send an sms to the mobile number of the police station thereby alerting them instantaneously. The sms will have all the details like location address and even if the mobile number does not work, the number will be immediately sent to the cyber cell.
The beta version of this handy software that was developed in about 4 months can be downloaded from the internet for free from Google Play. In a short period of over a few weeks it has received tremendous response from the users and the team might consider developing an advanced pro version depending on the response. The biggest advantage of the software is that even though the system works on Google maps and Global Positioning system, it can still work on phones without an internet connection. In the pro version, the software will be developed for Blackberry and I Phones apart from those with Windows Applications. In addition Hello Kerala will also provide details like roads, hotels, airports, tourist destinations and the events list of the State, making it a useful directory of all the essential information.
So, next time when you think you are being stalked or being targeted by kidnappers, don’t panic. All you need to do is to simply use this powerful tool to ensure police assistance right away.
P T Usha, popularly known as the Payyoli Express has not run out of steam even after 32 years since her maiden Olympics sojourn at Moscow in 1980, on July 25. It is praiseworthy indeed that this Indian sprint queen is making a comeback in London Olympics in the role of a coach after clocking many milestones in athletics. While the mega sports events like Olympics remain a distant dream for many Indian sports persons, the achievement of P T Usha deserves special mention. From being a shy girl from Payyoli village in Kerala who made her debut in athletics at the age of 16, Usha has indeed come a long way to become one of the most celebrated names in Indian athletics. Her sheer grit and perseverance has always influenced the budding sports persons in the country.
It will be a proud moment for India when Usha will be making her debut as coach in the London Olympics on August 8th when her protege Tintu Luka will be competing in the 800 m event. Making a nostalgic second comeback at the age of 48, Usha will have a lot to be proud of at this achievement. After an illustrious sports career , Usha continues to be actively involved in sporting activities by setting up a sports school to train the aspiring athletes who do not get enough opportunities to showcase their talents. By handing over her baton to a well groomed line up of proteges like Tintu Luka, Usha has become a role model, striving to keep up the sports credentials of this great nation.
The capital city of Thiruvananthapuram woke up to the gory news of the brutal killing of a woman by her husband in a residential colony in the city limits last week. Apart from being another instance of domestic abuse, this incident is a wake up call of the changing live styles of Kerala. It is shocking to note that the cricket crazy neighbourhood preferred to ignore the distress calls of the dying woman as they they were deeply engrossed in the keenly fought cricket match that was being telecast live at that time. By the time the match got over and the neighbours stepped out, it was too late and the convict had escaped the scene after committing the ghastly crime. The fact that this unfortunate incident involving a hapless woman has to happen in March , as we celebrated woman’s day, reiterates the fact that violence against woman continues unabated even today.
The community living culture has set off many new social issues and challenges in the Kerala society. Relationships have lost their relevance and reverence as people preferred to recoil into their private domain. Though people live close to each other than before, the distance between them has only increased manifold. Often people who stay next to each other do not know each other and don’t bother to help in times of distress. Many accident victims lose their precious lives on Kerala highways for want of timely medical help as people who like to be curious onlookers shirk away from the responsibility of taking them to the hospital probably because of the legal hassles involved.
It is paradoxical that Kerala, which takes pride in a high literacy rates has undergone an erosion of social values and culture as its populace indulge in the mad chase of money and power. If knowledge does little in fostering empathy and love for fellow human beings, it is high time that we reconsider our priorities and practices!
The argument continues! A snappy survey in Karma Kerala office was held in a bid to know whether men prefer slim or curvaceous female frames. In this interesting game, the men grouped themselves into two teams, supporting and opposing this cause!
Times have changed ; however men’s outlook about feminine beauty hasn’t. Well at least that is what the result of this game revealed ! A sizable number of men preferred a femme fatale with ample curves in lieu of a very lean or famished figure.
The men who prefer full bodied figurines have their own justifications to back their point.
- Let us start in the reverse chronological order and go back to the olden times. Most of the Indian goddesses flaunt a full figure to die for, the masterpieces of many classic painters like Ravi Varma portray voluptuous ladies and these wall frames are grabbed for a fortune in auction halls even today!
- The Indian movie industry, the largest of its type in the world often has been the harbinger of the latest trends. It had set off a frenzy by introducing many actresses who are bestowed with the most desirable figures. It is not by chance that a majority of well known Indian heroines like Madhuri Dixit, Kajol, Hema Malini , Sree vidya and Vidya Balan among many others are full bodied. The sensuous Shakeela whose mere screen presence could pump up heart beats of many men became a trend setter in Malayalam film industry, which in itself is a proof that men adore sensuality.
- The wedding snaps of the famous American actress, Kim Kardashian, well known for her sexy curves was sold for a staggering $1.5 Million, which shows that the curves are always in hot demand!
Let’s admit it, the genes in males are made to appreciate sensuous beauty.Smitten by their erotic charm, one of our Malayalam poets had even sang that gold and feminine beauty could give you a heart burn!
Now coming back to the terra firma from epics and poems!
- When a man starts looking for a life partner, the first thing he insists is that the prospective bride should be full figured and not very lean. Whether you like it or not, even the TV ads of body enhancing tonics blare out that lean girls are NOT in demand in matrimonial circuits!
- Often well built body types are associated with fertility , health and sex appeal. After all who doesn’t want his wife to be a crowd puller in a gathering?
- Most of the Indian dresses are designed to accentuate the curves of a full feminine frame. The typical Kerala attire of set mundu is best carried off by full bodied females; and very often lean frames look miserable in most of the Indian costumes (Men say they will look like “ a stick dressed in a cloth ” ).
- Most men even have the opinion that if a lady has to wear traditional heavy jewelery, she should have a healthy body.
- These men unanimously say, if they have to balance the weight while travelling on a bike, a full figured wife is a must Or else, if a strong wind wipes past, chances are that she might fly off and the rider can lose control.
- Last but not the least , all men who support healthy , full bodied females say in chorus that only such girls can discharge their domestic chores easily and can be perfect home makers!
When the stories of cat walking skinny girls who collapsed on the ramp are going viral in the media, don’t you think that these men do have a strong point to their credit?