Shenaz Treasurywala’s Open Letter to PM, Bachchan, SRK, Salman and Aamir!

Dear Narendra Modi, Amitabh Bachchan, Sachin Tendulkar, Shahrukh Khan, Salman Khan, Aamir Khan and Anil Ambani,

I am writing to YOU specifically because you are the most powerful and influential MEN in our country.

I am writing to you as a woman who grew up in a middle class family in Mumbai.

I am writing to YOU for HELP!

My parents may not like me saying this. I apologize to them if they are reading but this is NOT MY SHAME. It’s THIER SHAME.

My first experience with the opposite sex, was when I was just 13 and groped by a man (never saw his face but will never forget his hand) while walking in the vegetable market with my mom. She had just given me the worst haircut and as an angry teenager I was upset at her and was lagging behind as she walked ahead. I still remember what I was wearing. It was her dress, mustard with flowers and little bow in the front. How I hate that dress! As if, it was the dress’s fault.

I was shocked at first. Speechless. He disappeared. I just stood there. Tears started pouring out of my innocent eyes. I told my mom who went mad screaming in the market but who knew where that man disappeared to. I still remember the dirty feeling I had and the number of times I showered in my grand-mom’s bathroom after. That feeling never went away.

Shenaz Treasurywala

Shenaz Treasurywala

Since then it was non-stop. I would try to articulate this to my parents and while my mom understood, my dad and uncles told me I was imagining it. Maybe they just couldn’t deal with it. CAN YOU?

When I was 15, I started going by train and bus to St. Xaviers’ College. I was groped and touched and from all angles and this was just how I grew up. Not Just Me but MOST INDIAN WOMEN who don’t have the luxury of cars and drivers.

As a teenager I would dream of and still sometimes dream that I had a machine gun and could kill all the men who tried to grope me. A very disturbing dream for a kid, don’t you think?

I got my first assignment as a model in the FYJC and I had to go to screen-tests straight from college. So I had to dress nice, didn’t make it any easier. I specifically remember the time I went for an audition in a red body suit and a black long skirt with slits. It was HELL! I never wore that again. As if it was the dress’s fault.

I developed ways to defend myself, I always carried a bag in front of me, my fist was always clenched, I always turned around every 20 seconds to check who was behind me and a few times I slapped men who touched me, I got slapped back many times too. Sometimes saved by the public, MOST TIMES NOT.

My mom begged me not to pick fights with men who touched me, she was afraid of acid being thrown at me or that somebody someday would hurt me badly. She is STILL AFRAID and today she told me not to take an UBER to my meeting tomorrow. Hell ya. BAN UBER! Make everyone take responsibility for this.

My sister got into Sophia’s college, we were all excited. She went by bus but the first day she came home, she sobbed traumatized. A man had put his hand in her tee-shirt through her sleeve, the entire bus ride. She just froze. She was a kid too and wasn’t equipped to even understand this. I was LIVID. I’m sorry sis for telling the world this, please don’t stop speaking to me. IT’S NOT Our Shame. It’s THEIRS!

One of my friends in college was RAPED on the train on her way home in the ladies compartment. She was sick and was going home in the 11:15 break. There was nobody in the first class compartment going back to Bandra at that time, it was a superfast meaning it didn’t stop at most stations. He raped her and then jumped off after using her scrunchy (hair tie) to wipe himself. She was the only one on the train and had to limp her way back to her home in Bandra, bleeding profusely. She was just 16. This she felt was her shame so she did not say anything to anyone.

BUT IT ISN’T HER SHAME, it’s THEIR SHAME.

My mom accompanied me to Hyderabad on a shoot once. In churi bazaar, a cyclist groped My MOM. My dear respected and lovely MOM.

Sorry Mom, IT’S NOT Our Shame, It’s THEIR SHAME.

Why am I telling you my personal story?

Well first I want all women to Speak Up.

Let’s make this our MOTTO-

It’s not OUR SHAME, it’s THEIR SHAME.

Who are “THEY”?

“THEY” ARE THE MEN IN OUR COUNTRY.

Not just the rapists and the sexual offenders and gropers but also our Fathers (sorry dad) and Uncles and Brothers and MOVIE STARS AND CRICKETERS AND POLITICIANS for not SAVING US or PROTECTING US by insisting and protesting for the LAWS TO CHANGE and Rapists and Gropers to BE PUNISHED SEVERELY!

Why do we as women have to feel so threatened? WHY has there been no severe action taken? This has gone on for years now. Not just in Delhi but all over our country and yes even in BOMBAY OR MUMBAI OR Whatever the hell you want to call it! It’s NOT SAFE. NO!

My biggest fear ever since I was kid and even today when I walk back home at night from yoga or when I take a rickshaw from a friend’s home is being RAPED. I still feel that fear. I am still am on guard. I still fantasize of having that MACHINE GUN.

In the past 4 years I have been living and working half in India and half in New York and let me tell you I have walked the streets of Harlem, the Bronx and Brooklyn (perceived as the most dangerous in NYC) at3am after parties in short skirts and felt safer than I feel in Bandra at 10 pm on a quiet road fully covered. WHY??

Let’s talk about Delhi our Capital. I was there 2 days ago and the day of the rape. I wanted to go out and walk by India Gate and admire our great monuments but could I?! Why??

What good are all your speeches in the US or Japan or AUSTRALIA- NAMO, if no woman can walk freely in the streets even in broad daylight by herself in the CAPITAL OF OUR COUNTRY. Isn’t this a SHAME? SHAME ON YOU SIR.

This is our NO1 issue. FIX THIS before anything else.

This is a SHAME. And it’s YOUR SHAME. You are now RESPONSIBLE FOR US.

I beg all of you fine gentlemen that I have addressed to help change the LAW.

You are powerful men. I say, SHAME and PUNISH THE Gropers and Sexual offenders severely. KILL THE RAPISTS.

I won’t ask for public castration which is what I want and all the women want because I know this is unrealistic and things move SO DAMN SLOW in our FINE NATION.

All I ask for is the -Death Penalty Please. NOW! QUICK!

If that’s too hard or will take too long then at least LIFE IMPRISONMENT.

Put them away forever.

Why was this man who had raped twice before out on bail?

And then given a drivers license? YES, BAN UBER TOO. Make everyone responsible.

I’m ready to do anything. I’m not a big enough celeb but you Sachin Tendulkar, Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan, Sharukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Anil Ambani SIRS- need to speak up as MEN ( you are the men with the power)

SAVE US!

Please demand the Death Sentence for the Rapists.

NO BAIL. Just Death.

Superstars I beg you, please take a stand. Use your Superstardom and Power and MONEY and save the women of our country. SAVE US!

I urge you to protest or go on a fast or do something DRASTIC so people take notice, the government wakes up and CHANGES the LAW so these men are terrified to touch us.

Death to rapists. No bail. Just death.

Imagine Amitabh Bachchan Sir, Aamir Khan, Salmaan Khan, Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Ambani- if you went on a fast or walked to the Rashrtrapati In Delhi. If you, took this stand and made this YOUR NO 1 issue, how much change there would be?!

Why should we as women feel so unsafe in our motherland?!

Why should we as women be terrified and on guard all the time.

Why was this man out on bail after committed two rapes already ?

Make an Example Of Him.

Any man who even touches a woman should be imprisoned for life.

Be strict, make examples of these men, scare those who dare to touch us.

SCARE THEM BY MAKING AN EXAMPLE OUT OF THEM.

SAVE US, Save your mother, daughter, sister please!

This is NOT OUR SHAME.

THIS IS YOURS.

SHAME ON YOU.

Don’t sleep till you – SAVE YOUR WOMEN!

With all respect,

Shenaz Treasurywala

Advertisements

690 Comments

  • Shehnaz while reading your letter I felt as if those horrible days of my life came back when I was treated badly by those creepy creatures while walking on the road,travelling in DTC buses and almost every other place…its a horrific truth that I as a girl have accepted that nothing is ever going to change…I salute you to bring this worst problem that we face in our country as a girl apart from dowry, gender biasness and what not…I feel as we were never wanted around…i see that fear in my parent’s eyes…..thank a lot for writing this letter.

  • Stop this men-shaming tactic Shenaj.

    Crime of ‘n’ different types happen in our country – rape is not an extra ordinary crime. Problem with today’s ‘women lusty’ people is: they want to see ONLY the problem a women face and close their eyes on everything else.

    A women rapes her male student -> no one cares
    70k Men suicides due to torture by their wife/in-laws -> no one cares
    Two sisters falsely accuse and destroy 3 youths -> no one cares


    But
    One girl raped due LARGELY to her own mistake (passing out in a cab, where even a MAN would have got robbed or murdered) -> All hell broke loose
    One girl ‘accuses’ something -> all the people are like ‘Ohh Gosh – another crime on women, women are not safe in this country.. bla bla..’


    Come out of your stupidity Shenaz, and look around – crime is GENDER NEUTRAL and needs to be tackled without focusing on genders. A person who is of criminal mindset will do ‘n’ number of crimes in his/HER lifetime on both MALES and females. (yes: I agree that penetrative rape is largely applicable on females – but to some extent on males also – but there are other categories which are predominantly applicable on males. Still, I am not trying to segregate crime into – that happens on males or that happens on females). A Crime is a crime that’s it.

    In case of a women’s accusation, it is immediately ASSUMED AND BELIEVED TO BE TRUE always – doesn’t matter than if 80% of cases turns out to be false, you would still be busy shaming your own father and brother. Do one thing Shenaz: why don’t you speak to them face to face, slap them, and say ‘go to hell you bastards males of my life that you could not save that Delhi girl who ‘alleges’ to have raped by that Uber driver’

    ..

    T.

  • Hi Shehnaz

    Read your open letter and I believe every girl in India would relate to that. I have been living in Australia and at times listening to these gut rentching news feel glad that I am not in Delhi and I feel safe here! It takes a lot of guts to be honest and share the story openly about yourself! Hats off to you and I really hope that men in India should grow up and understand that treating girls as their toys and treat them like comodity is not good enough! Hope India wakes up and do something about it rather than lighting candles at India gate! Good on you girl

    Love
    Shikha

  • I feel sad reading this letter and for what she had to go through…but appreciate Shehnaz for the courage she took to write this letter,its high time to take action against this kind of issues, i think we must bring the Saudi Arabia law or Singapore law…people must have a fear in their mind breaking the law. I think Mr. NM , AB and Aamir khan is the best persons to look into this matter and can bring some changes in our society

  • The best thing to do, is make their names public, register them as sexual offenders, make sure they do not get a job anywhere in the country. For child molesters and pedophiles death sentence is compulsory, Defame these sick perverted men who rape and Grope women make sure no private firms give them jobs if a private firm is found employing someone with this kind of history 20% of their annual profits should be taken away, make the fine monetary so that the employer starts taking some responsibility and does proper background verification.
    And as far as legal punishment imprisonment for 7 years without bail for rapists, child molester/ pedophiles death sentence.

  • I sincerely agree in u and ur words… but if we start punishing the men who don’t even touch the women and they just get punished by the girl’s grudge on him …

    Rapists SHOULD BE PUNISHED … BUT NOT ALL THE MEN … CONSIDER IT. . PLS

  • I have grown up in Mumbai going through hell walking down the streets being grouped touched manhandled by such perverts in the sickest sense of the word. Today you as a celebrity yourself Shehnaz speak out but this has been happening since a long long time to young innocent girls. In the bylanes alleys roads everywhere even within the safe walls of our homes. I speak out today coz I am a victim myself and am not ashamed anymore. It’s not my shame it’s their’s. I urge all of you to speak out and make this a huge movement. Death to rapists. No negotiations no deal. DEATH. Make it happen the MEN in power.

  • education, religious upbringing, inspiration, values, ethics, morality setting are the key and not punishment. Attack the root of the problem than the problem itself.

  • Totally agree! We need these punishments:

    1. Immediate death punishment (options – shooting or executing them, electrifying, hanging) to any man who dares to rape

    2. Cutting hands and leaving the man disabled for life who dares to touch a woman without her consent

  • Thanks a lot for taking this step Shenaz. Even I was born & bought up in Mumbai & I love this city a lot but cannot defy the fact that even i , my friends, my sisters also have gone through what all Shenaz has gone through. When we couldn’t tight we just cried & kept quite. Then we learnt how we could use safety pins as our weapon. But its really shameful that we can reach the moon & mars ect yet something as simple as safety for our ladies we can’t get. If NsMo is really that good I would like to see him make drastic improvements on this condition. I now live in the United States & never once I have I felt unsafe. I still live my country but would want to come back only when I know its safe for me.

    Rani

  • Tons of Respect …. You said it.. High time we KILL those bastards.
    .who don’t even know from they were born from ..WOMANS womb..JUST CHANGE THE DAMN LAW..each day is becoming more riskier to live …shell shocked completely with whatever is going on around us…and why are people blaming girls for wearing short skirts and tops… Excuse me..its their freedom…then how come a new born baby or an old woman who cant even walk is sexier or being seductive..wake up and take off these rubbish thoughts from your mind… PLS CHANGE THE LAW AND HELP US TO BECOME SAFE..WOMEN EMPOVERMENT WILL SLOWLY HAPPEN IF THE SOCIETY STARTS SECURING THEIR WOMEN..NO NEED OF ANY EXTRA MOVEMENT…

  • Thanks a lot for taking this step Shenaz. Even I was born & bought up in Mumbai & I love this city a lot but cannot deny the fact that even i , my friends, my sisters have gone through what all Shenaz has gone through. When we couldn’t fight we just cried & kept quite. Then we learnt how we could use safety pins as our weapon. But its really shameful that we can reach the moon & mars ect yet something as simple as safety for our ladies we can’t get. If NaMo is really that good I would like to see him make drastic improvements on this condition. I now live in the United States & never once I have felt unsafe. I still love my country but would want to come back only when I know its safe for me.

    Rani

  • I agree , only death penalty , if proved guilty in any rape case but we need to be little curious in our own steps. Women were given power through dowry case and what happened more than 50% of dowry cases are met to harassment of men and parents. Girls and female should also understand and understand difference between men animals

  • The mentality of the people (MEN) should change more than anything else. How-much-ever these celebs demand publicly to change the rule the ultimate change has be to be in the behavior of people

  • Dear friends
    There are million of women and children in our country that are going through like shenaz ,
    Human heart or thoughts are full of evil, unless Human hearts / mind are not change this will always be issue
    Change your thoughts and it will change your feelings and behaviour will automatically be change.
    Only Gods power can change our heart , let us guard our heart and mind of what we allow to come into our life
    Ps Moses singh

  • I’m with you Shenaz…as an Indian traveling in Planes, on the road, we feel ashamed of the behaviour of our fellow citizens. there is no civic sense, no sense of duty, no sense of pride in what we see around us. The time for change is NOW!

  • I wept as I read this. Every word is so true and resonant with memories from all our pasts. And WHY? What have we done so wrong other than to be born as women? My greatest gift to the world is my capacity to think, work, feel, behave like a woman. And yet, even the trashy two bit no good scum on the street can reduce me to insecure nothingness with his dirty hands brushing my body and his beady eyes looking at my breasts. HOW DARE HE?
    And how come, he goes unpunished day in and day out?
    Nirbhaya rocked the world with its gruesomeness. But those men are still out there…biding their time until they go free. Are there lawyers to defend such cases??? How do those lawyers even sleep at night? Thank you, Shenaz, for being the voice of Indian women and for addressing the people who can actually do something. The men who MUST act on our behalf.

  • I have been out of this country since 7 years and I am glad that I left it. People say be the voice of change but in a place like India your voice is probably gonna be suppressed than be heard. I have been living in US since past 7 years and yes even at 3 am in booty shots no guy has the balls to touch me. And I have lived in India as well and in broad daylight guys have tried to touch me or pass a comment at me. Men and women both need to educate themselves or else people like us would not even dare to visit our own motherland due to these fears. Seven years and after listening to all these rape cases I don’t even think if I even wanna visit India.

  • When she sleeps with ELITES, it is not a problem. I am sure she wants public attention. This is how these lil celebs live on earth. They just use some tools. The problem is the society not some people. What made them doing and who taught them doing it are more important than they are doing it. Are you looking for a solution? Remember one thing we would never achieve peace even if you fight for it. A lot of fundies would attack me and I am sure but if a girl from a slum area says this, none of you would support it. You support this because this lady is a celeb. And she is a role model? Of course not! She may drink and use drugs and sleep with whoever she wants and she may call it ‘ my private life’. Who are you Shenaz to represent the victims? Or do you want some attention as you are not that popular as used to be?

  • Shenaz, I really salute your letter… I think there is no girl, lady or woman in India who has not suffered the indignity of groping, eve teasing, lewd comments, etc. We have been victims since forever, and sadly to say, the situation is really bad in India. The worst thing about our country especially is that if a girl is molested, raped or victimised in any way, it is deemed as being her ‘fault’. What we wear, how we walk, where we go… But the fault in not only theirs… It is our shame too. The day all mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters…. stop idolising their sons and start treating their daughters equally, the day our sons and brothers are taught to respect all women, the day women start respecting all women…. That is the day REAL CHANGE will start in our Country. Till then we require stricter laws, better governance, vigilant and pro-active citizens. law makers and law enforcement…

  • Ohh man I really feel very bad that I never thought of this issue is of such importance. THIS must be our top Most priority, if we cannot make our mother, sister, wife feel safe what the heck will we do our country. Thank you so much shenaz for being so bold and clear and guys please let’s stand up For any women/girl if they are being harassed by someone, these ass holes should think hundred times before doing anything wrong.
    And #Hangtherapists

  • I respect you Shenaz for speaking it up and to call out celebs to stand for this cause. The fear of getting raped was the worst fear i would carry every single time i stepped out of the house more than getting blasted in a terrorist attack. Most of the time I would carry an umbrella with me despite the fact it would not rain or would be sunny thinking that i would use it as a weapon.
    We surely need stricter laws and change of mindset that it is NOT OUR SHAME BUT THEIRS. considering the fact that laws will keep a good check on such gruesome behaviors to some extent, however it is all AFTER groping or raping. What about the fact that people will still exist who would want to do that disregarding the laws as it is not a bog deal to get away with it with insignificant amount of money.
    Here i want to call out all the girls and ladies who carry this fear, DO SOMETHING TO EMPOWER YOURSELF TO DEAL WITH SUCH SITUATION IF YOU HAVE TO. We have that fighter among us that can attack back and get out of the situation using fighting skills and strategies. Although we are not gifted with equal strength as MEN are, WE HAVE BRAINS and WE CAN TRAIN OURSELVES HOW TO be prepared, react and NOT FREEZE. If our sisters working in defense forces can lift heavy machinaries, guns and prove self equally strong and efficient, then why cant we train ourselves to fight back more efficiently ? In a single person rape situation if a girl falls weak in giving back plus 1 to that bXXXd, it is shame on girls part too. If we fail to speak up about it within our society without fear, it is our shame too.
    Its TIME TO EMPOWER OURSELVES. It is not safe anywhere, anytime in current world. WE HAVE TO KNOW HOE TO DEFEND OURSELVES. THINK ABBOUT IT THIS WAY TOO LADIES. Try and learn self defense in some ways and prepare yourselves mentally , physically to give back much more to those who are trying to harm you.

  • The problem is that every good law has the risk of high misuse in our country. Take the laws relating to dowry. But having said that, even if the existing laws are enforced and acted upon, there will be fear for touching women inappropriatly. Your letter should also have addressed the police and judiciary to enforce the existing laws and not allow people to escape through the loopholes.

  • I salute this lady. A girl who could be proud of herself.
    I just pray to God atleast this letter of her’s make some change in this motherland of ours, and let no sister of ours suffer this again. Let any guy attempt this again think dat, his mother is a women, his wife is a women, his child might be a women. So give respect. Giving full support as an Indian.

  • Truly value your sentiments Shenaz. Presently, I am studying in USA and looking for the job. I was working in India in a well renowned company. I decided to leave my beloved country and to come to USA because god blessed me with a daughter and I did not want my daughter to go through the same trauma what you and other girls in our beloved country go through. I can say that I am not in US for the money but for the safety and security, which I feel here for my daughter. I know that this can be considered a cowardly act but I believe my decision would be good for my daughter.

    I truly appreciate you coming forward. I wish something will change under Mr. Modi govt but, I have little hope only. Lets see!!

  • Totally agree with her. Indian laws are unfair to women in every way, they are treated as second class citizens in the country.

  • Hi shenaz,

    It’s really a shame on all Indian men who witness the crime but do not revolt against it. They put a shame on the culture of their ancestors but situation might change if people are given the right quality of education. As predicted by Lord Krishna that a women will die everyday, a women will be raped everyday, every women has to pass through this sexual assault has come true. If citizens of India do not preserve their culture and respect women, the beautiful world around us will collapse.

Leave a Comment