Lets be Gender Sensitive,a panel discussion organized by the Panjab University (PU) on Monday in light of the increasing incidence of gender violence in the country,brought to the fore disturbing statistics on crimes against women.
The Vice Chancellor,Prof Arun Kumar Grover,in his welcome address,requested the panelists for concrete suggestions that the varsity could adopt on a priority basis in keeping with its role as a change agent.
The panelists Prof Reicha Tanwar,member of the National Consultative Committee of UGC on Women Managers in Higher Education and Director,Women Studies Research Centre,Kurukshetra University,Gurpreet Deo,IG Police,Jalandhar Range,Punjab,and Naunihal Singh,SSP,UT Chandigarh,stressed the necessity of changing mindsets,of spurning outdated notions of patriarchy,of refusing to accept traditions that nullify ones very humanity.
Prof Tanwar called for committees in every educational institute as well as the workplace that would adopt a three-pronged approach to deal with complaints,including fake ones: conscientization,gender awareness and gender sensitivity.
She said a survey conducted amongst Kurukshetra University students under the aegis of the State Commission for Women,showed a disquieting set of factors behind sexual harassment – no fear of the law,media commodification of women,money and clout of the culprits,excessive consumption of drugs and alcohol,not to mention the macho image attached to those who can subjugate a woman.
While Deo apprised the audience regarding stringent punishments laid down under the amended CrPC for eve teasers,rapists and others causing grievous injury.
Deo also called upon the audience to take up the whole issue of gender sensitization as a joint exercise between the citizens and the administrators.
Moreover,Naunihal Singh shared that following its gender sensitization program in the citys educational institutions,the UT Police has registered over 192 cases in the last six months where the victims have voluntarily come forward.