Manisha Mohan, a 20-year-old engineering student at SRM University in Chennai, along with two of her varsity colleagues, Niladri Basu and Rimpi Tripathy, have designed an anti-rape lingerie following the brutal gangrape and assault of a 23-year-old student in New Delhi in December last year to ward off sexual offenders.
It took Mohan and her team three months to develop the garment, which they call Society Harnessing Equipment (SHE). Mohan said she was left disgusted by the rape culture in the country and her creation is a sort of retaliation against the social menace.
How does the anti-rape lingerie work? According to a report, he lingerie is a high-tech piece of cloth which is capable of detecting an advancing aggressor and deliver massive electric shocks. The garment will also be able to contact the local police station and the girl's family to inform them that she was in trouble. The aggressor will also be photographed by the inbuilt camera.
Questions, however, have been raised as to how the anti-rape lingerie can differentiate between an aggressor and a loved one and how could the potential victim ensure that she herself is not electrocuted. Can such an apparently complicated garment be made available for the masses?
The garment, which is a plain white nightgown lined with a polymer can be worn with a dress, pants or skirt. According to the report, studies have shown that an aggressor often tries to reach for the victim's bosom and hence the dress's bra-area has been fitted with censors capable of detecting pinching and squeezing. Mohan and her team said once the censor is activated, the garment will send out a very strong electric shock which will knock out the aggressor. But the wearer won't feel any shock since the side of the garment which touches the skin is left insulated.
Moreover, there is an electric switch attached to the waist of the cloth and that can be switched on whenever the wearer knows that there could be a potential danger, like while going out late at night. The switch, when on, will activate the shock mechanism. At other times, the switch can be kept in "off" mode.
The garment is also provided with a GPS device which can be programmed in a way to send messages to the near and dear ones at times of crisis by the girl or woman wearing it. It will also send an alert to the nearest police station.
The creators of the garment are still busy giving it the final touches to get it ready for sale. Reports said they are yet to find if the material can be washed in machine. Questions are still on whether the garment can be sold at cheaper rates, but Mohan and her team are hopeful that it could be reached to the women residing in villages. The team said it aimed to make the world a safer place without gaining any profit.
In 2004, two students of the National Institute of Fashion Technology had prepared a special jacket to curb crimes against women and it is likely to hit the market this year. That product also operates on a similar shock mechanism to ward off the sexual predators, it was learnt.