Tue, 21 Jan 2020

New Delhi [India], Dec 10 (ANI): To rally support and action for girls who are time and again subjected to street harassment, around 100 young women in Delhi came together at Dilli Haat to raise awareness on safety issues on streets through a 'Chalk Back' event.

The event was organised to raise awareness and generate a global dialogue both on the streets and on social media about the importance of putting an end to street harassment. The girls are part of Plan India's Safer Cities Programme which works towards building safe, accountable, and inclusive cities with and for adolescent girls.

Girls and young women during the event documented the harassment they have been subjected to in public spaces by writing them in chalk on streets and pavements as part of a collaboration between child rights organisation Plan India and anti-street harassment initiative Chalk Back.

A similar activity took place in three global other cities i.e., Nairobi, Kampala and Cairo to mark the 16 Days of Activism that started on November 25, 2019, and ends on December 10, 2019, which is also celebrated as Human Rights Day. The call is against gender-based violence.

'16 Days of Activism' is an annual campaign calling for the elimination of violence against women and girls around the world.

Speaking on the initiative, Anuja Bansal, Executive Director, Plan India said, "Street harassment directly impacts a girl's day to day activities, right from affecting her concentration on studies to the fear of using public transport. The Chalk back event in Delhi today is an effort from Plan India to draw much-needed attention to this global issue. Participating in such initiative, Plan India hopes to reach out to every community to help tackle unequal power relations and challenge harmful social norms that perpetuate insecurity and exclusion of girls in cities.

Savita, a volunteer, who took part in the Chalk Back activity said, "It is only when girls are able to move out of their homes, and experience the world around them without feeling unsafe, will they realise their potential and lead a fulfilled life."The Chalk Back concept is the brainchild of 22-year-old New York-based university student Sophie Sandberg, who began posting real examples of eve-teasing in her city on the @CatcallsofNYC Instagram in 2016. Since then, the idea has blossomed into a youth-led movement against gender-based harassment in 150 sites across global cities.

Local activists chalk, organise community events and raise awareness on issues of harassment. (ANI)

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