Is India the most unsafe nation for women? A poll’s findings trigger debate

The results of the poll outraged many given India beat nations like Afghanistan and Democratic Republic of Congo and even Pakistan, but for others it was also a sign that things hadn't improved for women.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: June 26, 2018 9:37:04 pm
Trinamool Congress, Trinamool Congress women’s wing, unnao rape case, kathua rape protest, kolkata rape protest Placards from a protest held in 2018 against rape. (Reuters image)

A Thomson Reuters Foundation poll of 548 experts on women’s issues found that India was the most dangerous country in the world for women in terms of human trafficking, including sex slavery and domestic servitude.

The results of the poll outraged many given India fared worse than nations like Afghanistan and Democratic Republic of Congo and even Pakistan, but for others it was also a sign that things hadn’t improved for women.

National Commission for Women, Rekha Sharma, rejected the findings outright. “Women are very aware in India of issues and there is no way that we could be ranked number 1 in such a survey. The countries that have been ranked after India have women who are not even allowed to speak in public,” Sharma was quoted as saying in a PTI report. Sharms did not name the country she was referring to.

It wasn’t just Sharma, who questioned the findings of the poll. Many others were as skeptical.

However, others like Congress president Rahul Gandhi said the findings of the survey indicated a failure of the government to improve women’s safety in the nation. Gandhi’s tweet came around the same time, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was criticising the Congress on its record on the 43rd anniversary of the Emergency.

He wasn’t the only one though, with others also tweeting against the poor record of women’s safety for which they blamed the Modi government.

Congress party’s women’s wing also slammed the Modi government, terming the report an ‘international shame’. In a tweet, Mahila Congress wrote, “International Shame. Welcome to the Era of @narendramodi Governance under which India has become a ‘No Women’s Land’. Extremely challenged women safety. The lack of law and order under @BJP4India govt. has made India a top ranker in the list of most dangerous countries for women.”

While the government has not reacted officially to the findings of the survey, the results seem to have split opinion down the middle on why India tops a list it would rather not be on.

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