Most women in India would admit to having been flashed or shown lewd and inappropriate gestures by men.
Despite the rise of such incidents in public spaces, more often than not these offenders get away with their repulsive behaviour owing to public indifference and also because shame prevents most victims from filing cases with the police.
However, a law student from Kerala who was waiting for her train to Mangaluru at the Kanhangad railway station refused to let a flashing incident scar her and instead thrashed the offender till he begged her to let go.
Hailing from the town of Kanhangad, Kavitha J Kalloor is a final-year student of Mangaluru’s SDM Law College and was heading back to her college on the Ernad Express on Sunday evening. As she was waiting for the train, a middle-aged man clad in ‘white’ started acting in a shady and disturbing manner and finding this dubious, she clicked a picture of the man.
Suddenly, she realised that he had flashed her and had begun to masturbate in public. Instead of cowing down with shame and disgust, the daring young woman put away her phone and caught him by the collar and gave him a thrashing he would never forget.
“The man fell at my feet and said he will never do it again and walked away. There were several men and women on the platform, and I was expecting some real support in the real world. But not one person came forward to warn him,” Kavitha told The New Indian Express.
The incident came to the fore when she took to the social media and posted about the entire episode along with the miscreant’s photo.
Interestingly, Kavitha soon found that the man was a serial offender after many women personally messaged her on Facebook reporting similar flashing incidents at the same railway station.
“Flashing and public masturbation is very common in Kerala. It is done by well-dressed men and by jobless persons too. It is done in buses, trains and railway stations,” Kavitha added.
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As she was heading to Mangaluru for her final exams, Kavitha couldn’t take the matter up with police immediately. However, the young woman intends to register a police complaint against the offender once she returns to her hometown.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)