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Wednesday, 6 November 2013

10 RULES FROM MY HANDBOOK - BE SAFE THAN SORRY!

I remember when as a child my parents took me to watch Home Alone which was playing at one of the theaters near our home and more vividly, I recall on how I couldn't stop gushing over and over again at the cuteness of the boy, Kevin ‎(played by Macaulay Culkin) with the creative and heroic antics he put up against some crooks who had come to steal his home and even harm him. When my parents got down to asking me what I learnt, I realized what a wonderful lesson it had for all ages! We all could enjoy watching it because we could relate to the dilemma of the young boy and would have done just that (if not exactly) if we were in his shoes!

Over the years, I have evolved some of my own methods to deal with life's challenging situations that was presented before me while there were some of those that I learnt and observed from other people's experiences. These are those tips that are easy to implement and quick to your rescue...but above all it is your alertness and presence of mind that can really save the day!

So...here we go!

Image Courtesy - www.petticoatjournel.com

I  - If you oft stay alone then here are a few things you might like to do -
a) Install a wireless remote bell in your neighbors home so that in case of emergency you just press the button as an SOS signal.
b) If you suspect some suspicious activity going on outside your flat or someone trying to break in,you should immediately put on the television to the loudest volume so as to draw the maximum attention of your neighbors and flat mates (I guess this is something I picked up when I first watched Home Alone)
c) Always keep some emergency numbers like 100 for Police, 101 for Fire Brigade and 102 for Ambulance on the Speed Dialing option of your mobile.
d) Remember, if there's ever a situation when you have to confront a thief/burglar then physical combat should not be your first option because he may overpower you in terms of strength or perhaps he might be armed. In such a situation, your kitchen comes to the rescue. Firstly, blind the intruder with chilli powder or pepper spray and once he is weak then you could use a broom, stick, bat or a hockey stick to beat the pulp out of him!

II -When hiring a domestic help for your home, be sure to check whom you give privy into the four walls of your home. It is mandatory that you get his/her antecedents verified by the police by filling up a form that's to be submitted in your local police station. It's better to be safe in your own home, than be sorry about your blunder later!

III -While returning home from work avoid taking the deserted or dimly lit path. In fact, if you are in a situation where you think you are being followed, dial a phone call back home and talk to your parents in the language you speak at home (i.e. besides Hindi, English and the local language) and convey your distress so that they can inform the police on your behalf and lead them to your location. Today, with latest apps like Suraksha you could contact not one, but five contacts in a single touch with your GPS coordinates mapped to ensure your safety always.

IV -Girls if you think that someone is keeping tabs on your daily movement or you even suspect that you are being stalked everyday by the same person, try to change your daily routine. For example, if you go by let's say the 'A' path from office to home, trying chalking a new way by taking the 'B' path. Remember the 'B' route has to be well-lit and inhabited as well. Avoid isolated areas under all conditions.The whole point here is to be unpredictable by setting an alternate path so as to avoid giving the culprits a set trend of your movements. And of course, do involve the police by reporting about such incidents, you are not just doing yourself a favor but saving the lives of many such innocent girls who fall prey to stalking, eve-teasing and molestation.

V-In crowded buses,sometimes it gives men a perverse pleasure to touch women inappropriately or grope them in full public view. Well, the situation can be a vulnerable one for women, but here's what I suggest that you can do:
a) Turn around and blind the day lights out of him with your pepper spray
b) Some bolder ones might even give them a tight rap or fetch for their slippers and later leave them to public mercy
c) Always carry a Swiss knife or for that matter a pen knife in your handbag at all times and just injure his hands when you find them touching you indecently

VI-While traveling alone outstation in long distance trains,never give the impression that you are unaccompanied. It might just be a ruse for someone to take advantage of you especially those who might have malafide intentions.You could instead give the impression that your relative is in the next compartment because he/she couldn't get two berths together. Also, no matter what avoid wearing jewellery whether in gold or imitation; it's because those who have set their intention of robbing you wouldn't know the difference!

VII-During your travels, avoid keeping all your cash in one place i.e. in your wallet. In fact, try to keep it in different places to avoid getting robbed or pick-pocketed at railway stations or bus stands. You could try to keep some cash in the layers of your clothing of your luggage while some could be kept in the 'secret' pocket of your trouser. This 'secret' pocket is not the regular pocket of your jeans or trousers but is in fact a special square pocket fitted in the waist on the lining inside of your trouser. You could just ask your tailor to fit that for you...I don't know what is the lingo in Hindi for it, but do tell us here when you find out! :) 

VIII -When visiting a new city, avoid giving the people around you the impression that you are new outta there by asking "Where is this place?", "How do I reach there?" etc. In fact in the age of technology getting robbed in a new city is not an excuse. Today with pre-loaded apps on your smartphone, you can not only just find your way to a new city via GPS and Google-maps but also find the happening places, restaurants, pubs and events taking place in town!

IX -Since I oft return late in the evenings from work (as I have not yet learnt to drive a car), I always make it a point to use public transportation (like the bus) rather than traveling solo in a cab or auto-rickshaw. At least I know the predictable route the bus would take and travel in the company of some people rather than travel alone in an auto and keep myself in a constant state of suspense on the twists and turns the auto-driver would take en-route! Also some of these auto-rickshaws that ply in the city are those which come from the outskirts while some are even unregistered,so in case of trouble it'd be difficult to trace the whereabouts of the vehicle! Ahoy,caution there!!

X- In shopping malls with the spate of incidents where cameras are reportedly being found in changing rooms and privacy of an individual being violated, it has become our prerogative to be responsible for our safety. So what can be done about it? At the moment there is no simple technique to detect the presence of cameras in changing rooms, so we could begin with sheer simplicity and common sense. Whenever I go to a mall, I go with a purpose that today I am going to buy a pair of jeans or a kurti etc. So before I proceed to the mall, I carry from home a perfect fit jean and kurti from my wardrobe which I measure with the clothing I am going to purchase.Secondly, there have been instances when I decide to surprise myself by making a purchase at the spur of the moment. Then, what can be done? In fact I make it a point to have a word with the store manager on the possible exchange of the garment if necessary which is mostly agreed upon. In fact in most bills these days, it is printed on the backside that the items can be exchanged within 7-15 days of purchase provided it is in pristine condition. So, there we are!

So, these were my ten quickie Suraksha tips on how women could tackle some day-to-day problems be it at home,work,shopping malls or when traveling to a new city! 

The bottom line here is: Be Suraksha...be safe, the choice is YOURS!
Regards, 
Sonaal

I am sharing my Smart Suraksha Tips at BlogAdda.com in association with Smart Suraksha App.

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