The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), responsible for security on the Delhi Metro, has recently allowed people to carry lights and matchboxes. In addition to that, CISF has also allowed women to carry a knife up to 4 inches long for self-protection. While on the surface it might seem like an obvious step to curb crime against women, is it actually so? Or is it something we are soon going to regret?
What do women across Delhi-NCR have to say about this? Let's find out...
Pooja Srivastava, resident of Ajnara Gen X, Crossings Republik, Ghaziabad (Journalist)
"It's kind of funny. Who would come up with such an idea? It will just make the Metro more unsafe. If you remember, there was a survey a few weeks back, according to which most pickpockets in Delhi's Metro were women. How will the security distinguish between women who are carrying knives for protection and those who are criminals? If they had to ensure women's safety, there are several safer ways to go about it. They could have introduced more women constables, installed more CCTV cameras, even deputed women constables inside Metro coaches. So I'm not really in favour of this move. In fact, I would say it's dangerous. Giving women the right to carry a knife means the government has already accepted that it cannot give them security, that its intelligence and police systems have failed."
Madhuri Varshney, resident of Ekta Apartments, Sector 3, Dwarka (President, Dwarka Forum)
"It is a welcome move as far as security is concerned. Women's security is a major concern, and Delhi Police hasn't really made any serious to strengthen it. Women are left with no choice but to use such items in their self-defence. The move will allow them to at least feel a bit secure."
Nitika Bisht, resident of Laxmi Nagar, East Delhi (Dance teacher/ choreographer)
"I don't know what made them take such a step. There are so many ways to ensure women's safety. In Metros, a pepper spray would have worked just fine. Allowing women to carry knives, whatever the size, is a risky move."
Megha Sinha, resident of Sector 17, Gurgaon (HR Executive)
"This is a dangerous move. I won't be feeling safe travelling in a Metro compartment knowing there can be armed criminals around me. Miscreants will use this as an opportunity to freely carry a weapon around. The women's compartment just became the most dangerous coach to travel in. I appreciate the intent, but something like a pepper spray should have served the purpose."
Sutapa Sen, resident of Sector 15A, Noida (Homemaker)
"Women's defence is a matter of concern, given the alarming rise in crimes against them. Women should be prepared to face threatening incidents, but carrying knives might create some unwanted complications. It is best to look for safer alternatives."