I still remember the day very clearly. It was around 7:30 in the morning when I left home for college. I was pursuing my Masters back then. Bangalore weather was at its best - a foggy morning with a slight breeze. As I started from home that morning, I didn’t have the slightest idea that what was about to happen would leave me so emotionally distraught for a long time.
As I left home, I saw the sun coming out of its horizon and the beautiful sun-rays kissing the ground. I was ready for a wonderful day ahead. But, it was not to be. I used to take public transport back then and I had to walk for around 10 minutes to reach the nearest bus stop. As I climbed the steep roads of our colony, I saw that most people were still inside their houses. Bangalore weather can do that to you sometimes. As I walked on, listening to the chirping of the birds, the hymns coming from the houses and the air being filled with the aroma of the incense sticks, I realized how I loved my everyday walk to the bus stop.
I was halfway through when I saw a man on a luna rode past me. Before I knew it, he took a U-turn and strode past me trying to grab me. My instinct was to move and I did. But, by then, he had speedened up and when I turned back to see what had just happened, I saw him making some lewd gestures. It all happened in a matter of few seconds and I stood numb without knowing what had just happened. There was no one on the road and I felt stranded. I felt helpless. I continued for the bus stop and reached college without any other incident, fearing all the time that the man would come back. I still don’t know why I didn’t go back home even though I had just faced danger. I guess I had totally blanked out to think anything by myself.
I spent that whole day in college thinking about that incident. When I reached home in the evening, I burst out crying, because, that is when I fully realised in how dire a situation I was in the morning. At the time, it was more than 20 years since I was residing in the colony. I had played on the same road, walked to the bus stop on the same road for past 10 years and yet I was not safe in a place I grew up in. After that day, my dad dropped me everyday to the bus stop because I was left scared and scarred emotionally.
I still remember the man on the luna. He looked to be in his late 20s, wearing a check shirt and grey pants. I can still see the lewd gestures he was making, so clearly before my eyes. I wish I had done something about the situation back then. I had my phone, I could have called my parents, I could have called the police, but, it would take more time in explaining the situation to them. But, I regret not calling them. I wish I had Smart Suraksha with me then so that I could just press a button and let my folks and the police know that I was in danger, and also where I was even without my GPS being switched on. It would save a lot of time.
Thankfully, we now have the technology at our hands, though I wish no one is in such a situation wherein they will have to use this app but I know in this big, not-so-good world, it always pays to be cautious. So, download the “Smart Suraksha” app and be safe!
P.S. This is a true incident and the views presented here are solely mine.