Reports says poor light causes crimes against women in Guwahati

    By Abdul Gani,,

    Guwahati: After National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) reports put Assam in shame with highest rate of crimes against women, here is a revealing fact why women have to face disturbances from trouble mongers especially in city. According to survey done by a city based NGO, North East Network (NEN), women are harassed most of the times due to the poor light facilities.

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    The survey which was conducted in 2012-13 across the city among 1, 045 women from different walks of life says that 51 per cent cases take place due to bad light in Guwahati. NEN initiated the survey to address the issue of ‘Women’s safety in public places’ as a part of its campaign on violence against women.

    “It’s a serious issue that due to poor light facility in the city women are facing harassment among others. This is an issue with the authority can easily addressed towards solving the problem which is on the rise in a serious way,” said Sheetal Sharma, one of the members of the resource team after releasing the survey report ‘Towards a Safer City for Women’.

    The other factors which ‘encourage’ the criminals to harass women are crowded public transport or stations (42.2 per cent) and alcohol (40.8 per cent) at the second and third place. Another serious factor which the women have expressed in the survey is ‘lack of respect for females’ which is 36.2 per cent.

    However, the most worrying point is that women face harassment just because they are females. “I think the mind-set needed to be changed. We need huge awareness campaigns and 24 hour effective helpline number to bring the number of crimes down,” Sharma added.

    On the safety measures taken by the respondents, the report says that as many as 58.8 per cent women avoid going out alone in the dark.

    Among all these just 8.6 per cent women go to the police. However, in a matter of serious concern, most of the times police do not do anything when women go for lodging complain.

    On several occasions, people in the city have been complaining for the poor light system. The street lights which are seen jointly by PWD and GMC have not covered the entire city. Sources at GMC office said that they are working to get the street lights coverage in the entire city soon.