Is India Safe to Travel in?

By Alap Parikh.

It's a question on everyone's mind these days, so we asked our Facebook fans and they shared the 'other side' to India's safety story.

India travel blog, solo woman travel india
Photo by Anurag Agnihotri.

The news in India hasn't been very encouraging of late, particularly the significant bits about how dangerous it is for women both Indian and foreign to move around, the bits which now make every woman look over her shoulder with suspicion and trepidation every so often, only as a precaution. Being a citizen of Mumbai, I had always been proud about how the situation was still so much better here than in a lot of other places in the country. This was until a malicious rape occurred not more than ten minutes from where I live, and in a very frequented and popular area, Lower Parel. This is an area where one of the most popular malls in Mumbai is, along with offices and upscale gig venues and cafes (including Hard Rock Cafe, Mumbai). Everything suddenly seemed much more real. This could have been anyone; a friend, a relative, an eminent person of the city or country.

The sad part is that most people who have travelled in India know that a majority of the country has the friendliest and most hospitable, loving people. A few incidents caused by a handful of hooligans have devoured a major share of the news in all media forms, and planted horrific images in millions of heads. Adding to the already bad scenario was the article on CNN written by Michaela Cross that went viral on the internet (at the time that I write this it has over a million views and 104k shares). Sitting in my chair watching all these articles spring up one after the other, I wondered how anyone could possibly muster up the courage to travel and explore the countless beautiful pockets of this country.

smiles and determination of rural Indian women #2views from north east india

As much as the situation needs to improve for women to feel secure, we felt that the many positive stories suppressed underneath the horrible ones in the news needed to come out somehow, and that with certain amounts of precaution, there were magical experiences waiting to unfold out there. So in addition to the optimistic and patriotic responses that have been cropping up on the internet to educate people about the other side of the story, we decided to do our own bit, and asked people to share any uplifting and heartwarming experiences they had had on the road in India on our Facebook page. There were definitely a couple of gems in there! Have a look :)

We'd love to hear your comments if you've had any positive experiences! We hope it will give hope to the dejected and ashamed Indians out there, and affords someone who has only heard only one side the opportunity to make a more balanced decision, and perhaps have a revised opinion.

Photo Credits: All photos under Flickr Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0. 

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