“Respect for Women”: The New Slogan in a Maligned City

The other day when I was traveling, I saw a taxi with a slogan “This taxi respects women.” I have seen this “respect for women” signs in many places in and around Delhi now. This seems to be the new mantra in a place which continues to see high level of rapes and physical violence against women and children. I applaud the effort and the heightened consciousness, but respect for women needs to be more than a slogan, women’s safety need to be a priority and things have to fundamentally change on the ground. This means stronger law enforcement and educational efforts for longterm attitude shift. Female feticide still continues; women continue to take unknown harmful substances hoping that would help them deliver a boy child, and young girls as young as two continue to get raped. It is a sad state of affairs, which unfortunately a slogan cannot fix.