We Were Body Shamed In Broad Daylight While They Shamelessly Watched And Laughed
It's sad to see how many girls still face horrible experiences on the streets of Mumbai. It's depressing to know that something as simple as a short dress or a crop top can make it harder for them to roam around comfortably. It's difficult to understand people out there, who just cannot let women live their lives the way they want to and find great pleasure in publicly judging and shaming them. One such experience pierced through my heart and made me extremely angry with the kind of low mentality people have.
It was around 2:30 pm. My friend and I had just stepped out of a theater and were walking towards a cafe. We decided not to take a rickshaw or a cab because the cafe was quite close and we felt like walking towards it. I remember I was wearing a crop top, while my friend was wearing an off shoulder top, that day. There wasn't anything indecent about our clothes.
We're proud Mumbaikars and have always worn shorts, crops, bikinis - whatever suits our mood and the weather outside - and have never been shamed for it.Share this quote
We have been brought up in a respectable area of the city, where all girls are raised to exercise their full freedom and right. Until that day, we had only read in papers or heard through people about the rampant shaming most girls go through because of their clothing choices. That day we too got a taste of the other side of our society.
As we walked towards the cafe, we heard an old couple sitting on a bench, call out to us. As soon as we turned towards them, they said, "Aren't you ashamed of yourselves?" We had no clue what they were talking about, so we simply replied with "Sorry? But we didn't get you!" That's when they started shaming us - from how our parents hadn't raised us right to how wrong we were to roam around so comfortably without realizing that we were young girls, they kept accusing us ceaselessly.
They even fired questions like, "Why do you want to show so much of your skin to people and why can't you just cover your damn bodies!" They kept harrowing us with their questions until we got very angry. But we still didn't reply back because they were much older than us and our parents had actually raised us right by teaching us morals instead of teaching us how to cover ourselves.
In the end we only said, "Thank you for your concern" and walked away from them. This, however, flared up the old woman even more and she shouted behind our backs, "Look at girls today, they just don't know how to behave..."Share this quote
We had never been treated like this and felt really disturbed. But we calmed ourselves down and tried to ignore it. But just then, a random rickshaw puller pulled up his rickshaw beside us and shouted in Hindi "Pura hi nikal ke baith naa, puri nangi ghum" (why don't you take off everything you're wearing and walk around naked instead?).
It took us a second to register what he just said and did, but by the time we could react, he fled the spot. We'd had enough, but to our horror, we noticed that people all around us were laughing at his comments, instead of trying to help us. We felt helpless and disgusted. We just wanted to find the rickshaw puller and beat his a**! We were only trying to figure out what to do next when the same rickshaw puller rode past us again and shouted, "Ae randii!"(Hey you s***!)
He sped away, once again and we couldn't note down his rickshaw number or chase him in time. This time, however, the people around started looking at us as if it was all our fault! We decided to wait for him to come again but smart as he was, he didn't try his luck the third time and after waiting for half an hour, we too left the spot.
All around us, everywhere, girls are being raped and molested in broad daylight, while people around are more concerned about taking videos and posting them on social media, instead of helping them. It's so sad how a girl has to face this low mentality of the society. It's seriously depressing how a girl has to correct her style, her dressing choices, her way of life just to keep herself safe from becoming a victim to another sick-minded person! WE NEED TO CHANGE THIS.
It's time we acknowledge the fact that WOMEN ARE HUMANS TOO and they can not be treated like second-class citizens with no rights in the society.