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After one year of the Nirbhaya Incident of Dec 2012 has anything changed for women in India.

The society terms us as "gentle human beings", but does this term really true about us? This question stands knocking our conscious after every rape incident is reported in the newspapers.

The Nirbhaya incident reminds us of increasing savageness and brutality of human beings and also the increasing crime against women in our society. It paints a horrible picture of the status of women in our country.

Rape is an unintended or forceful sexual intercourse done by a man to a woman. In most of the cases the victims are threatened by the accused not to disclose its identity before their family or friends. The victim suffers the humiliation in silence and do not report the incident to the police for bringing shame to her and family.

The scenario is such that the girls are being sexually harassed everywhere, be in work place or in colleges, bus, trains, or anywhere else. They are not secure even when they are with their family members or even when they are in their own locality.

The Nirbhaya incident opens our eyes to look at the matter that women are not safe even in the national capital of our country.

After the incident the entire country woke up to this problem and they protested against the brutality committed against the girl. After that Women safety bill was passed and "Nirbhya fund" was created to safeguard the women. All this was done to control the increasing incidents of crime against women in the country.

If we look back to the early vedic era, we can see the instances of Apola, Lopa, Gargi etc. who occupied a high position and dignity in the society. They enjoyed all kind of liberty may be not political but definitely social. In clear words in many women were superior to men living in that society.

As the time rolls on the condition of women started to deteriorate. We have started to keep them under a certain boundary. Even today most people want their women to remain indoors. They may not like see them roam around freely on the streets.

Some men have the tendency to consider women as a mere object to do the house-holds works or satisfy their sexual urge and produce children. If any woman tries to break this stereotype, it is not favored by the society. Least, anyone like to see her economically or socially established.

It is painful to state that even one year after the 'Nirbhaya' incident, the condition woman has not changed much. The instance of Birbhum, district of West Bengal, where a girl was gang-raped is a grim reminder of the state of women safety in the country.

In this case the girl had an affair with a man who did not belong to the same community. As a punishment meted by the shalishi sabha or "Kangaroo Court," its head ordered his men to have fun with the girl. As a result the girl was gang raped and then murdered. This incident brings out the condition of women in our country.

We could see that when women are molested or harassed they are told to keep quite as it is their fate. We have to change this mindset. Social awareness among the women both in urban and in rural areas is highly necessary.

The local administration should play a vital role in creating awareness about the safety of the women. Awareness camps has to be organized everywhere to remove this social malice from our society.

Women should have economic and political liberty to fight this evil in the society. It is their right as well as their duty to do so. The nongovernmental organization should come forward and play a vital role assisting the women in their fight.

If we want to see a new dawn in our county we have to make our women safe by focusing on women's safety. And for doing so we have to first change our mentality.

Rohan Sengupta

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