Be Your Own Superhero

This campaign is to celebrate your story. It’s to celebrate the countless stories that collectively give us hope to #RiseTogether and fight against injustice. You can share your story of personal victory over harassment and your picture here:

Here are some of the real superheroes in the world! 

Superhero Ketaki Tarde writes,

“This happened around two months ago. I got down at Dadar station and felt someone following me. I turned to see that it was a 40 year well-dressed and decent man. I continued walking and he continued to follow me. He would slow down every time I slowed down and would walk fast every time I walked fast. I got a call so I stopped at the end of the bridge and he also stopped. He kept staring at me and as soon as I finished my call, he came up to me and tried to touch me. He asked what was my rate and I screamed at him and caught his shirt. Hearing me, one of the idli-sellers came and helped me take the guy to the police. It was later found that he was a pimp and would traffic girls.”


Our Superhero writes,

“On 7th June 2017, I got molested by my cousin. He touched me repeatedly. While doing this, his girlfriend saw him doing it. She saw him troubling me. However, in the end, she turned a blind eye to it. It was only later that she confessed having witnessed the crime in front of two other people. What happened then? NOTHING. NOTHING HAPPENED. The two people who were sole witnesses that I got molested remained quiet and I was treated as a joke. I haven’t gotten over it. I was forced to look stupid. Who would believe me? I had witnesses who chose to stand up for a molester and not me. According to me, the perpetrators are not the only leeches in our society. It’s also the ones that remain quiet after witnessing a crime. It crushes someone and they don’t realize how they may have just ended someone’s life.”


Superhero Sakshi Sinha writes,

“A few days ago, I was out with my family in the evening. We took a rickshaw to go home and since there were many of us, we took two rickshaws. My younger brother and I were in one rickshaw and my mom and aunt were in the other one. At a diversion, I lost sight of my mom’s rickshaw. At that point, the rickshaw driver took a road that was extremely lonely and without any street lights. He was driving extremely slowly. Since I wasn’t aware of the road, I asked him to speed up so that we could catch up with my mum’s rickshaw, but he wasn’t listening to me and was still driving slowly and gave me excuses that road isn’t good and he can’t help it (but the road was a properly plastered one.) I angrily told him to drive fast as it was a dark road with no people around. To which he yelled at me to just sit silently or else he would drop me at that lonely road and drive away. Though I was afraid, I was angry and I gave a strong punch on his back and told him to drive properly or else I would complain against him to the police. After this, I pretended to call my mom. A few minutes after this, I saw my mom already coming back to see why I was so late. I told my mom about what he did and my mom and a few other ladies nearby scolded him for his actions.”



Superhero Unnati Rani writes,

“My friend and I were casually talking when we saw a few of my friends making fun of another friend about her clothes. Though it started as a joke, it soon took a serious turn and they jokingly shamed her character. The moment I realized that what they were doing wasn’t fun but harassment, I scolded them for their actions. To which all of my friends told me that I was making an issue out of nothing by calling it harassment. Then I tried to explain them the thin line between harassment and fun.”


Superhero Sweta Chatterjee writes,

“First incident was when I was in 8th grade and was walking towards my school (around 6:40 am). I saw a man coming towards me, and something didn’t feel right. From the corner of my eye, I followed his path and to my horror he continued to come towards me. Suddenly, he tried to grab my chest and push it. Since I was noticing him, I was quick to respond and held his hand. He was a grown man and I, still a school girl. I remember not letting go of his sleeves. A few people gathered (few because it was too early in the day) and hurled abuses at him – I continued to walk and went to school. Second incident was a few years back. While travelling from Thane to Borivali in a bus, the passenger sitting next to me touched me inappropriately. It went on for a while and as it was a moving bus, I didn’t realise immediately. But when I did, I yelled, created a scene and the conductor made him get off the bus.”



Superhero Urvashi Parmar writes,

“This was an incident where I raised my voice for the first time and I haven’t looked back since. In the year 2015, I was returning from the interiors of Alibaug to the main city. I was travelling with my mother in an ST bus. My mother was seated near the window, and I on the aisle seat. She was enjoying the breeze and it looked so wonderful outside. Nonetheless, diagonally in front of us were two men who were looking all around the bus. I, being the closest in their field of vision, caught their attention. Out of the two, the one sitting on the aisle looked at the window on his left and then stared at me. It happened once, twice and then thrice. In the meantime, the other man stared at me from the corner of his eye. The number of times it occurred really got my blood boiling with anger and disgust. I thought of staring back as a sign of threat, but it was to no avail. I was already infuriated, more so because it reminded me of a petrifying incident in the past when I hadn’t raised my voice. I had a bottle of frozen water kept in the pouch of the front seat, and it was slowly melting. The moment the man decided to stare at me again, I took that bottle and hit it hard on his head. I screamed and yelled at the top of my voice, and the bus fell silent. The other man who was staring saw this and stopped looking at me. Since then, I cannot tolerate any form of eve teasing, be it me or someone else.”



Superhero Radhika Shankar writes,

“It was around 8 PM and I was travelling home in a cab. I noticed that the cab driver was constantly trying to make conversation and kept staring into the rear-view mirror to make eye contact with me. When we reached a signal which was 5 minutes away from where I live, I suddenly caught him touching himself inappropriately while staring at me through the mirror. I immediately called him out on his behaviour, got off the cab, noted down his cab number and asked a friend to tweet about it to the Mumbai Police.”



Our Superhero writes,

“At the time this happened, there was a construction site, near where I lived. I would always feel uncomfortable walking back home, after a late night, because I was worried about the harassment and what could potentially go wrong. The constant harassment, by this one worker, made me feel sick and honestly shameful. I tried many ways to avoid it, asking a friend to come with me or even pretending to be on the phone as I passed by the site. Rarely, some of the other construction workers would also suggest the man stop, but he never did. So, I decided to get into his space and commented about his body and behaviour- returning his misogyny. Looking back I realized that man-hating wasn’t the best way to go. But in that situation, the harasser took off running and never bothered me again.”



Superhero Asma Meeshasan Zarina Ansari writes,

“In my community, a 21 year old girl was being harassed by a married man who was 28 years old. I came to know about it a month later and I learned that the man continuously kept harassing her for a month. After that, the girl and I went to the police station because I knew the process of taking action against the perpetrators. The police assured their support and I made a new friend.”



Our Superhero writes,

“I was walking down a busy road that had many apartment buildings and shops by it. I suddenly felt a security guard ‘feeling up my front’ with his hand. I was absolutely shocked, and too surprised to register what happened. I saw the man feeling very proud of himself- smiling in fact. And he was about to turn and walk away from me, because he thought he could get away with it. I grabbed him by the collar, and screamed at the top of my lungs. I created a scene, but I didn’t care. Instantly, but hesitantly, a crowd of people gathered to help. The police arrived, he was reported, and thrown into jail.”




Superhero Pratiksha Thate writes,

“In my community, there are 6 sisters. Their mother has passed away and father works in a night shift. One night when the father was at work, a boy came in a threw a stone in the room which frightened one of the girls. The girl was very brave and she shouted at the boy and saved her life.”



Our Superhero writes,

“I stayed over a friend’s place who picked me up after office during the Mumbai Floods in 2017 as there was no way I could reach home. We watched TV and had food. However, he misbehaved for sometime considering it was okay. I had to shout and physically resist for sometime till he understood that it was not okay. It was a strange and helpless situation for me. I have also experienced not being take seriously over work by certain colleagues because I am a girl.”


Superhero Isha writes,

“A boy was following my friends and me, while we were coming back from school. First, we ignored it thinking it was a coincidence. However, when he kept following us everyday, we decided we needed to take action against him. Our whole group went to that boy and asked him what was the reason behind following and stalking. He suddenly started abusing us. Without wasting a minute, I complained about him to the local traffic policeman, who was there on the duty. The policeman and the whole crowd gathered there beat up the boy. They took him to the local police station. This news appeared in all the newspapers the following day.”


Our Superhero writes,

“My aunt and I were on the metro, on our way home. The entire time I felt that there were eyes on us, and I was growing uncomfortable and impatient. So I looked up and found this man who would not stop staring. My instinct was to look away, but then I thought to stare back at him to make him uncomfortable too. But he was too shameless, and his eyes didn’t budge. So then I got up, walked over to him, and asked him ‘Do you know us from before, have we met somewhere else, because you keep staring at us? I thought I would come here because maybe you needed help remembering where, if you don’t- stop staring.’ After this, he got very embarrassed, and looked around to see all the people that were watching this happen. The other passengers even laughed and clapped.”


Superhero Nupur writes,

“My friend, who studied at Patna women’s college, was waiting for an auto. Two men who were on a bike said something to my friend while I was talking to my brother over the phone. My brother told me that he was in the same area and he would drop us in his car and there was no need to take an auto. We decided to wait from him near the gate of LN Mishra. The same boys were there and they started laughing when they saw us. They were passing cheap comments. I scolded them for their behavior but they didn’t listen to me, and by that time my brother had reached. When I told him, he beat them up a lot. The boys were carrying ID cards. I took it from them and asked my brother to head towards police station so that I could complain against them.”



Our Superhero writes,

“At my previous job, there was this one incident that happened. I used to get harassed and bothered by one of my coworkers. Initially, his comments were harmless, if not funny at times. Then, as days went by, they grew to be more sexual, personal and filthy. He would even make attempts to grope me, whenever he passed by me and we were alone. I was scared to tell anybody, in case he tried anything worse. Nothing would stop him and it just got worse. Even despite me telling him to stop. After that, I wrote an email to the HR department and expressed my disgust, annoyance and concern with the situation. Gladly, they responded quickly and it worked. He was terminated from the company and I never saw him again.”



Superhero Meenakshi Vuppuluri writes,

“I stood up to a man who molested me in a public bus in Chennai. I yelled at him and made sure that he apologized to me. He got uncomfortable and tried to run away but a police constable caught him and fined him for his behaviour.”


Our Superhero writes,

“A poor child was selling toys in the market. A boy came and started insulting him and even broke some of his toys. The boy was constantly shouting at him and harassing him. The boy who was being harassed didn’t say a word so I went there and asked the harasser to control his anger. Somehow I managed the situation and also made the harasser realize his mistake.”



Superhero Shaziya Shaikh writes,

“It was was early morning and I was walking towards my college in Bandra. While I was walking, a young boy came up to me and asked me to have sex with him. At first, I was really shocked but I ignored him and walked ahead. He continued to follow me and said the same thing again. This time, I got angry, screamed at him and threatened him so he finally left.”


Our Superhero writes,

“One day I saw a man beating his wife.I went to him and rescued the lady.”



Our Superhero Naina Jha writes,

“I was travelling to Paṭna from Pune by train and my seat was the upper berth in 2nd AC. My other co-passengers were an uncle, one guy of my age and another man who must’ve been in his 40’s. At night, when lights were off and I was sleeping, I suddenly felt someone touching my feet. I wasn’t well so I ignored it thinking that it must’ve been a dream. After sometime, I again felt somebody touching my chest and I just opened my eyes, screaming. The man in his 40’s was touching me and when I shouted, he started saying that I was just screaming to get attention. I complained about him to the TC and got him along with other passengers kicked out of the train. It’s important to raise our voices against every wrong.”



Our Superhero Krishnaa Ganesh writes,

“I had been doing an internship in Bangalore with a start-up. Our boss was quite young so he was always casual and friendly with us. Sometimes he got a little too casual and that made us uncomfortable. The night before a few interns internship period was getting done (including me), he said he wanted to treat us with dinner and a few drinks. We politely declined but he kept pushing it so we went to a nearby restaurant. We were chatting, and the night was going fine but when he went to the washroom, my co-worker, who was sitting next to him, said that he had been getting too touchy with her and she did not feel okay. When our boss returned, I made an excuse to have that co-worker sit next to me, so that he could not bother her. The night passed, my co-worker and I decided to share a ride back home. On our way back, she told me that the boss, through out the internship, sent her some explicit messages and she had been waiting for the month to get over because contractually she could not leave in the middle. I was appalled at hearing this. I wished I had known this earlier but to prevent it from happening to anyone else, I confronted my boss on our WhatsApp group, where several new interns had been added. He removed me from the group immediately but I am happy that I spoke up because the next day another co-worker told me that he had done the same with her and she kept blaming herself for it.”



Superhero Ayushmita Krishna Samal writes,

“I am no Hero. I am a simple, normal girl you meet on the streets and forget about. But the same normal girl you meet on the streets is harassed every day, sometimes in the form of staring; sometimes whistling; and sometimes, groping. A girl on the streets often feels too scared to protest, to raise her voice against what is going on. The situation is so normalised, it is so deeply integrated in our daily lives, that we forget the fact that just because the world is quiet about it, does not mean we have to.

My story begins with two men I encountered in the metro once. It was a busy working day, and the time was somewhere near twilight; and the entire Delhi was probably inside these metro cars. One of the men, no less than 50, found an opportunity to try and grope me, inappropriately touch me on my privates, taking advantage of the crowd. I did not protest. I was scared, and vary. I continued to try to move farther from the man, but he kept sliding closer. I wish I had fathomed the courage to punch him on the face that day, but I am not sorry that I didn’t. A second man, somewhere in his thirties, noticed what was happening, and took charge. He got in between the older man and me, and asked him to get off the train at the next station. I do not remember what this man looked like, nor will I ever be able to recognise him if I ever see him again; but that day, I realised, that this world is divided into three ways; the good, the bad and the heroes. Heroes who save people from mistreatment, and these heroes never wear capes.

Over a year later, while I was travelling in a local bus, en route to campus from Daryaganj, I felt a man’s erection on my buttocks. I almost prayed I was wrong, and that I was misreading the situation. You see, more often than not, we try to find an alternate reality to situations where we are victimised. Rather than fighting against it, we try to shield ourselves from the wrongs of the world. I knew what exactly was going on, and I understood also, that this time, there was no hero coming, I had to wear my own cape.

I used my right elbow to hit the man on the chest, with full force. I could hear him gasp, and he retreated almost immediately. Nobody saw what happened. But I felt an air of relief and strength. Relief, because I was not scared anymore; strength, because I knew, that if the same thing happened with me or anyone in my vicinity, I would hit the felon again.”


Our Superhero writes,

“I was with my friends in a passenger train and one man was constantly trying to touch me. I caught hold of his hand and raised my voice and he immediately apologised for his behaviour.”


Superhero Dipti Joshi writes,

“I had joined Reliance as a trainee. When I would go to my desk, I would often find some items at my desk, either a keychain or a figurine or a rose. Slowly, I started finding chits with messages like ‘I love you,’ ‘I miss you,’ and one fine day the person left his mobile number. It then evolved into getting missed calls on my mobile, often from another desk in the same office when nobody was present at the desk. I took the mobile number to security, and it was traced to two people in house-keeping, who harassed women regularly. However, none of the incidents were reported. I was new to the office and I reported it, following which e-mails were sent to all the employees asking them to report such incidents in office!”


Our Superhero writes,

“This one time when I was travelling by Metro, a man who was boarding tried to grope me and tried to blame it on the people behind him (stating that they pushed him). I immediately grabbed his hand and twisted it. I went and complained to the security present there who dealt with him. Hopefully he learned never to mess with women again.”


Our Superhero Naina Jha writes,

“This incident took place in South Extension, Delhi. It was around 7 PM when I was in a rickshaw and returning home from office. Suddenly, someone pinched me from behind. I immediately saw one guy walking past my rickshaw, smiling at me and singing. I asked my rickshaw puller to ride a little faster so that I could catch him. After sometime, I caught hold of him from behind and kicked him hard. By this time, a lot of people had gathered. I told them what had happened. After this, I called the police but unfortunately the man slipped away from my grip. I still complained to the police and gave his physical details. When the police caught him, I was called to identify him. They dealt with him properly. I believe that if you don’t help yourself, nobody will.”


Our Superhero Anhita writes,

“One evening a few months ago, I went to a vegetable market for shopping. I saw this older looking man cornering a girl. I felt uncomfortable so I went up to him and asked him what he was doing. He asked me to mind my own business and that he knew the girl. I asked the girl if she was fine and if she knew the man, but the man did not let her answer and again asked me to mind my own business. I looked at the girl again who looked scared so I decided to raise my voice and not “mind my own business”. In a few minutes, other people gathered and the man felt intimidated and left. After that, the girl came up to me and thanked me. She told me that the man lived near her house and was harassing her when she told him repeatedly that she had no interest in him.”


Our Superhero Anjali writes,

“I was in class 8. I had some project work to do, which was saved in my pen drive but I needed a laptop so that I could copy my project file in it. My uncle had taken my laptop to his office and I didn’t wanted to wait. In my neighbourhood there was a Bhaiya (a middle aged man) with whom we were in good terms. So I asked my mom to let me go to his place so that I can use his laptop to do my work. And I took my sister along. He lived in one bedroom flat which had a big terrace on the other half of the floor. I went to him and asked that can I use his laptop. He agreed and made me sit on the chair and he himself kneeled down next to me. I started checking the data in the pen drive. After a few minutes I realized something really disgusting . The man was trying to put his hand around my waist and I could clearly feel that it was a bad touch. I couldn’t think what to do. In no time I stood up from the chair and took our the pen drive from the laptop and looked at him in anger and left the room without uttering a word. I called my younger sister I a very loud voice and went back to my place. He stood up still, with no shame. I could not stop myself from telling to all this that happened to my mother. She immediately called my father and went to the man’s house. Since I was very disturbed so my mother told to stay back at home with my aunt. In the next coming days I came to hear that he was told to move out with his bag and baggage to some other places because he had not only done this with me the building in which he lived had a girls hostel on the other floor and he eve- teased those girls every day. After my parents complained about him, those girls also took initiative to complain about him. Later we came to know that he was already married and he always claimed to be a bachelor and so after being shamed, he left the place.”


Our Superhero writes,

“A poor child was selling toys in the market. A boy came and started insulting him and even broke some of his toys. The boy was constantly shouting at him and harrassing him. The boy who was being harassed didn’t say a word so I went there and asked the harasser to control his anger. Somehow I managed the situation and also made the harasser realize his mistake.”


Our Superhero Naina Jha writes,

“I was riding my Scooty when I suddenly found someone driving a Bolero, following me. He was driving rashly and in a zig-zag manner around me. At first, I ignored it but when he started to comment, I overtook him somehow and stopped at next traffic signal. I complained about the person in the Bolero to the traffic police standing there. Luckily, he had stopped there as well. I reported the car number and the police took action by fining him for nuisance driving and disturbing somebody. I felt so satisfied because I was my own superhero that day. Being your own superhero is of utmost importance.”



Our Superhero writes,

“I was travelling in a train and I saw someone harassing my friend. She didn’t said anything out of fear but I warned and scolded that man and he felt ashamed thereafter.”


Our Superhero Pratibha Sharma writes,

“I was coming back to college when I realized that a guy was following me on a scooty. So, I stopped my scooty where the security guard was and asked the guard to stop the guy’s vehicle. I confronted him and left him with a warning. I felt good that I took some action in that moment and did not succumb to fear.”


Our Superhero writes,

“I was walking with my sister across a zebra crossing, and a driver lowered the car window and hollered at her. He made inappropriate comments about her physique and started to cackle, which seemed threatening and we were uncomfortable. My sister got scared, and hid behind me, and so I felt it upon myself to do something for her, and to teach him a lesson. I asked him how he would like it if his mother or sister or even daughter was walking and the same thing happened to her. He paused and looked somewhat ashamed. He apologized and then left.”


Our Superhero Jui Chitre Harshe writes,

“I faced an incident recently while travelling by local train from Thane to Parel. Since the ladies compartment was crowded, I boarded the general compartment with a few other ladies. There was an old man, around 70-75 years old, standing next to me. He had a bag in one hand and his other hand was unusually close to my thigh. At first, I thought that his hand accidentally brushed against my thigh due to the rush in the compartment – the thought that a man, my grandfather’s age, would try to touch me inappropriately did not cross my mind. After a while, I realised some odd movement on my thigh and I felt uncomfortable. I told him twice to keep his hand away from me; he did that for a while but again took advantage of the rush and touched my thigh inappropriately. This time, I asked him point blank, “Ajoba, tumhala tumche haat nako zalet ka?” (Grandpa, are you fed up of your own hands?) which is when he started pretending like he hadn’t done anything. He said, “I don’t understand what you’re saying! Stop blaming me unnecessarily, you crazy girl! I replied, “You don’t understand? Well, then let me explain.” I twisted his hand and told him, “Till the time you get off this train, if this hand even comes close to me I will make sure you go home with only one hand. Don’t you dare touch me or any other lady again. I could very well understand your touch, Ajoba! Please don’t think I am a fool.” He was still resisting and blaming me that I was being crazy but a few ladies stood by me and said, “Why would she lie about you? Does she have any personal grudges against you, Ajoba? Please stop pretending now and stay away from all the women.” He was ashamed of himself, apologised for his behaviour and got down at the next station. I could still feel the touch of his hand on my thigh and it was gross. Please be alert because even old men can be perpetrators.”



Our Superhero writes,

“I was travelling in a passenger train in general coach when a guy sitting next to me slid his hand under my hips. I felt uncomfortable with that touch and I raised my voice against that and asked him to behave. The people around started to notice that and that guy had no choice but to apologise and leave his seat. This was my little story of triumph over harassment.”


Sulochana Mohan Taware writes about her Superhero grandmother,

“This incident includes 3 generations of my family – my Nani (maternal grandmother), my Masi (maternal aunt), my mom and me. We were travelling by bus in Satara. Suddenly, I saw Nani and Masi shouting and beating a man with slippers. We came to know that the man had tried to sneak his hand into the blouse of my 60-something Nani and had even touched my Masi inappropriately. Initially, when my Nani was just shouting, he tried to ignore her and keep a pretence of sleeping and being innocent. Later, when she beat him with slippers, he started apologising and the conductor threw him out of the bus. My Nani was always a firebrand and we miss her deeply.”


Our Superhero writes,

“I was once in the metro when this guy boarding it tried to grope me and then tried passing it off as being pushed from the back. I immediately grabbed his hand and twisted it. And then got off the metro holding his hand tight and complained to the security present there. Hopefully, he learned never to mess with women again.”


Our Superhero Khushali Jaiswal writes,

“It was around midnight when a couple of friends and I were taking a tour of the Delhi University campus. The interesting part was that we were the only girls outside our so called “safe homes” and in hands of the “perpetrators” if that’s what we call them. It was saddening to see that we were ogled at and considered available in literal terms; eve-teased and judged for our character because we were enjoying a moment together without harming anyone else. To know that if we were guys we could be out at any hour of the day, could howl our asses off from sitting on bikes and cars and would not be judged for it is terribly disheartening. It was a rebellious night. Although we rebels would not really be remembered much but in our our own hearts and minds we won because we did not fear to live our lives the way we wanted to nor did we feel ashamed for being out at night. Believe me, we don’t need to be saved; they need to be put in the right place. No one can take our right to walk or talk or dress the way we want. It’s them who need to be saved from their own filthy minds and loose libidos that can’t stay intact. #FeministWomaniyas”


Our Superhero writes,

“I am an employee of a company and right after I had joined, I started receiving unsolicited messages from a senior person in the company. He unnecessarily commented on my clothes and looks over WhatsApp and I had had enough of it. I gave him two firm warnings after which he stopped messaging me.”


Our Superhero Nabina Sinha writes,

“Kolkata, 18th August, 2017: It was the 10th day of my stay in Kolkata, West Bengal. I came to this city all the way from Tripura, Northeast India, to pursue my MA in Mass Communication and Journalism. I got a couple of classmates as friends and I used to travel through local train with them from Birati (my home) to Barasat (my University). On 18th August, 2017, my friends and I (3 boys and 3 girls including me) were returning home after finishing our classes. We were in Barasat station and heard the announcement of the train reaching the platform. The platform started getting crowded and two of my girl friends got separated from us. They yelled from the distance that they will be entering the train from another door. The train arrived and everyone started pushing each other. My male friends helped me to get up and the moment I entered the train, I saw a boy standing just right beside the door and heard him passing a sexist and racist comment. He was little short and was staring at me in a disgusting manner. I’m a girl with typical Northeastern features and many people outside of Northeast India has a strange mentality for people like me. I often face racist remarks, eve-teasing and cat calling. But it was for the first time someone has thrown such a pathetic comment to my face. I was stunned for a moment and couldn’t figure out what had just happened. I kept quiet and slowly my anger and disgust turned into tears. One of my friends saw me crying and asked me what happened. I told him the ordeal and he told me to ignore them. He’s also from Northeast India. When we came to the city, there was a conflict going on in Darjeeling where Gorkhas were asking for a separate land and as a result there was news going on that Nepalis are facing lot of discrimation in the State. For people living outside Northeast India, Nepalis and Northeatern people look the same, so my friends and I were a bit scared to fight back as we thought that the crowd might turn against us if we retaliated. I swallowed my anger and decided to carry on the journey by keeping mum (it was the biggest cowardly decision I have ever taken in my life and I regret for ever letting this thought cross my mind). I was just one station away from my destination. By the time I got closer to the door as I had to alight, I heard the boy calling someone and both of them stood beside the door facing me. I kept a straight face and acted like I didn’t know what they were talking about. Both of the boys started cat-calling me and then one of the boys said “I don’t know from where people like her come from”. This was the moment I decided to teach the boys a lesson they would never forget. Using all my rage, I thrashed them with my words. I fought back in front of all with a loud voice saying “People like you are the reason why this city is degrading. Too bad your parents never taught you how to respect a woman. I doubt if you even respect your own mother. You’re passing racist remarks but are you even educated enough to know that a place named Northeast India exists. You should feel ashamed of yourself, ashamed of your such low grade upbringing that makes you that it’s okay harass girls like this.” Throughout my retaliation, they looked shocked, kept sweating profusely, and finally hung their heads in shame. They probably never thought that girls can stand up for themselves. There was a weird silence in that train’s compartment. Every single person was listening to me. A few senior citizens came and told the boys to apologise to me and they did say “sorry” a lot of times. My destination arrived and my friends decided to come along with me to take me home. Before getting off the train, I told the two boys, “When you reach home today, tell your mom what you told me, say the exact same sexist remark to your sister, and if you survive the night without getting one bruise on your body, come to the station tomorrow at the exact time, and I will be waiting for you, you uneducated moron!” I never saw the two boys again. While dropping home, my male friends told me, “If all girls could stand up for themselves like you did then surely boys would stop harassing girls like this.”


Our Superhero writes,

“I am a member of a Facebook group of old school friends. All of us were posting our recent pictures on the group to update each other about our current lives. A girl posted a picture with her current boyfriend on the group. Her ex boyfriend, one of my old classmates, commented something vulgar on it. He called her a slut and posted intimate details of their past relationship. Immediately, I responded to him, got him removed from the group and consoled the girl. Sexual harassment is rampant on the internet also. I am glad I could speak up against it. I will continue to do so.”


Our Superhero Sumara Riyaz writes,

“I am from Nicaragua. I am a social entrepreneur. I want to tell you a story, a little bit about my path as an entrepreneur, especially in the tourism industry. When I started my first business, which is the Garden Cafe, we faced a lot of challenges. It was pretty hard, especially as a Nicaraguan woman, to be doing things with the government. From getting permits, to remodelling the space where we were starting the Thai restaurant – I constantly faced rejection. I faced questioning from both the government, the staff who were doing the construction project and the customers. I am married to somebody from the US, and I would constantly get questions like ‘Are you the wife of the owner?’ – never getting the acknowledgement for my accomplishments as a business owner. My husband was also a co-owner and he received the credit and adulation that I failed to receive. This is something that constantly bothered me. Through time, I learnt to really search for that pain and that anger that I had built from being constantly rejected. Eventually I learned to find the strength within.”


Our Superhero writes,

“I was travelling with my friends to Manali last semester. The bus conductor, on seeing that we were a group of girls travelling alone, kept coming to us and talking. He first asked us if we had boyfriends, he assumed that we did since we are “modern girls who travel alone.” We were uncomfortable so we politely tried to ignore him at first. But he didn’t get the message so he went ahead and asked us for our phone numbers under the pretext of arranging transport for us in the future (if we were to travel to any other place). He also added that we could message him and send him “pictures” that “girls like us” share. We were not only uncomfortable but also angry now. I got up and yelled at him, told the other passengers about his misdemeanour and asked the driver to stop us at the next station. I am glad that I spoke up against him.”


Our Superhero Nitin Gupta writes,

“It was Saturday morning when she finally broke her silence and told me that a few folks were persistently pursuing her. When I asked about how long this was going on for, she revealed to me that it was going on for around a month. Intially, they were just two of them but slowly 3 more joined in and there were 5 of them harassing her. She didn’t speak to her family about it as she thought they might prevent her from continuing her work and regular routine. She came to me as I am her closest companion we both decided to settle it. The following day, my friends and I waited my friend (the girl who was being harassed) at Mandi House Railroad Station. As per instructions we waited for the 5 men to arrive. Once they came, they immediately started pushing my friend around and we immediately called the cops who dealt with the men appropriately.”



Our Superhero Jyotica writes,

“I travelling by local train in the general compartment. It was very crowded and the man standing next to me would not move his hand from my shoulder. I was too shy to say anything since I thought he was just doing that for support, so I tried moving but he would not let me go. That is when an elderly lady came and stood between us. She understood my discomfort and came over to help me. Things like this, make these women true superheroes!”


Our Superhero writes,
“It was at the time when I was about to leave my tuition. I was waiting with one of my friends outside class for another friend to come. Close by, there was a man standing and watching something really bad in his phone and then showed it to us. At the time we just got really scared and left that place. However, later we realized that we should’ve taken some action against him.” 
Our Superhero writes,

“It was 5:30 in the evening and my friend was leaving from tuition to head home. Suddenly, three guys on a bike started following her. She got so scared and started walking quickly. Somehow, she managed to reach home safely. The following day, she forgot about them but they came again to the same spot and followed her. She got really angry and narrated the entire incident to our teacher the following day. All of us, accompanied by our teacher, went up to those boys and yelled at them for harassing my friend.”

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