Being a part of a male dominant society brings with it tough challenges for women on a day-to-day basis. More so, they are bound to face different types of issues and be subjected to all sorts of human rights violations. Be it rapes, honor killings, gender discrimination, or domestic violence, women in Pakistan witness it all. Moreover, Girls should beware of a guy who follows them in Trail 5 while hiking in Islamabad.
A recent harassment case that has come to limelight will not only enrage you but also give you the wake up call for raising voices. On August 24, yet another harassment incident took place in Islamabad, Trail 5.
According to three girls, who reached out to Parhlo, around 9 in the morning, they went for hiking on a hiking trail in Islamabad. Although one of the friends brought her brother along, he took for hiking ahead of them and was soon out of sight.
While sitting by the stream, and enjoying the chit chat, the girls noticed a man staring and smiling at them. In fact, he stood near them for the entire time that they were there, i.e. for 30 minutes. The real problem began when he started approaching closer every minute. Moreover, people were passing through the spot, whenever a family came closer, he would drift away in the bushes. Initially, the three of them ignored him but then they heard him talking on the phone. He would constantly say, “Everybody is by the stream,” and “Come fast.”
Although the network signals were poor there, the girls felt alarmed. As they saw rangers passing by, they reported to them. They claimed they had seen the man, and he had left so there is no need to worry. However, the moment the rangers got out of sight, he reappeared from bushes. And this shameless man kept coming closer to them, on a stone next to which they were sitting on.
Luckily, the girls said they saw a family approaching and thought to go back with them. He started chasing them; when they stopped to drink water or tie shoelaces, he would just stop with them. Later, a girl stopped to ask them how far the stream is, to which they replied 5 minutes away. To this, the creepy man rudely interrupted and said, “Why are you misguiding her? The stream is 30 mins away. You come with me, I will show you.”
As the girls saw an aged man going back to the parking lot, they began walking with him. Moreover, they reported to him that the man behind them was chasing them. All he said was that he sensed it already, and “Nothing can be done of these people.” Disappointed, the girls decided to go back to the parking lot.
On their way back, they saw other rangers and reported to them as well. Sadly, rather than taking care of the harasser, the rangers mustered up the courage to say, “You guys are done hiking right? I would suggest you leave now.”
At the parking, they found the brother who came along with them. They told him about the creepy guy. He agreed to go once more for hiking and asked them to tell him if we saw that man. This time, they saw that man again and confronted him in front of some men. They asked him why he had been following them inch by inch. Sickeningly, to this, the man replied rudely, “Does your father own this place?” But in less than 30 seconds his lips started trembling and he went flat.
Why do women in our society have to live with the constant fear of exploitation? With so many harassment cases piling up on a daily basis, why are there no strict rules or regulations that are actually functional enough to hold these monsters accountable? Is the need to feel safe too much to ask for? It is time we break the silence and fight harassment and raise our voices and most importantly beware of such a guy as the girls witnessed on trail 5 in Islamabad.
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