Last Friday morning in Bangalore, India, Veena Ashiya Chindlur was on her daily jog in a park when a man sexually harassed her. Rather than run away from the attacker, Chindlur chased him, beat him with her hands, and called the police.
A friend who was jogging alongside Chindlur caught the incident on camera. You can watch it here:
Although the man escaped, they passed the footage to local police, who located the man nearby within 40 minutes and promptly arrested him.
Chindlur recounted the incident to Bangalore Mirror: "Around 9.30am, my friend and I were jogging when he made strange noises and eve-teased [i.e. sexually harassed] me. I tried to scare him by running after him. He tried to flee, but I chased him and hit him. However, he managed to escape."
Chindlur added that people were "unable to digest" that women can retaliate in these situations, adding: "The fact that women can react and hit back is just not acceptable in our society."
Chindlur shared the video on Facebook with the following comment: "I am posting this video for women to know that change will happen only when we want it to happen!"
She added: "Taught an eve-teaser a tough lesson! I was eve-teased this morning by a guy in a park where I run regularly. I chased him, hit him hard and filed an FIR. Police were extremely supportive."
"Eve-teasing" is a term used in India to refer to sexual harassment or molestation of women by men in public places. Sexual harassment is not uncommon in India: In 2012, The Times of India conducted a study on sexual harassment and found that 70% of the women who participated said they had been subjected to lewd comments or songs from groups of men; a quarter of the women had been groped or molested by men; and in over 90% of the incidents, people nearby did not respond to help the women.
The Times of India study was commissioned in response to the horrific incident in 2012 when 23-year-old student Jyoti Singh was raped and tortured by six men in a moving bus in New Delhi. UN Women described that case as the tipping point that "brought attention to violence against women not only in India, but globally". Since then, several more incidents of severe sexual violence have triggered international outrage, including the case of two teenage girls who were found hanged from a tree after being subjected to a gang-rape earlier this year.