Odisha Woman IPS Officer Records Song to Embolden Women against Eve-teasers, Spread Awareness
The song was part of Sharma’s project to address harassment and eve-teasing, for which she also formed a special police team called ‘SHE’.
Gajapati IPS officer Sarah Sharma releases DVDs of her song. (Image: News18)
Bhubaneswar: The desire to give women the confidence they need to confront eve-teasers has prompted a woman IPS officer in Odisha to record and release a song she sang to spread awareness.
Sarah Sharma, Superintendent of Police of the southern Gajapati district, not only formed a special team of cops to deal with the rising nuisance of eve-teasing, but also recorded a full-fledged song in her voice that seeks to keep the police team motivated for its job and also asks women and girls not to be afraid of eve-teasers.
The Odia song, ‘Narira surakhya pain neichhu pana’ (we have vowed to keep women protected), has been a rage on social media after it was formally released by Gajapati police at the district headquarters town of Paralakhemundi on Tuesday.
The 35-year-old IPS officer, who is a trained vocalist of Hindustani classical music from school, is seen singing in the recording studio with gusto, accompanied by musicians and recording technicians.
“I love singing, and I sing whenever I get the time and the atmosphere. I decided to sing this song myself because this project of the police helping women who face eve-teasing is close to my heart. I am glad the song is being liked by many,” Sharma, a 2010-batch IPS officer, told News18.
The special police team is called the ‘SHE team,’ SHE being the acronym for ‘Safety-Health-Environment’. Under the project modelled after a similar initiative of the Hyderabad Police, a team of police personnel led by a woman sub-inspector and seven constables will patrol sites frequented by women and take quick action against men who harass or eve-tease them.
“Dozens of young women I met in recent months told me that they frequently face eve-teasing and that this nuisance is so severe at some places that it makes their lives difficult. The SHE team will ensure that women go about their work in public without any fear,” said Sharma, who was appointed as the SP of Gajapati district in February.
In her last stint at the Biju Patnaik State Police Academy (BPSPA) in Bhubaneswar, Sharma attended music classes in the morning to hone her singing skills. “Music is a passion for me, apart from reading and writing,” said Sharma, who went to Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) for her MPhil in international relations before cracking the UPSC examinations.
A part of the lyrics of the song goes like this: “Jhia-bohu tume au bhaya na kara, phone number achhi tume dayal kara, jhianku comment mariba chaliba nahin, road romeonku kara tharahara”. (Daughters and daughter-in-law, fear no more. Here is the phone number, dial it. Passing comments at women will no longer be tolerated. You must give road romeos a scare.)
At another place, it says: “Jalibani maribani akaranare, surakshita heba ame ama hatare”. (We will not set ourselves afire and die for whatever reason. We will protect ourselves with our own hands.)
The SHE team, which will rescue girls and women from eve-teasers and nab culprits, will also give counselling to victims. The District Child Protection Unit will help the team in this.
(With inputs from Basudeva Dash)
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