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Women Face This Every Day. A Woman’s Call For Oxygen Cylinder Is Met With A Demand For Sex

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The past few months have been a trying, trying time for India. As the medical system got overburdened and collapsed and people struggled for air, the government drew a blank. The powers that be were nowhere to be found, even as basic infrastructure was denied to those who needed it the most. In fact, rallies were held, religious gatherings were allowed and India’s caseload rose. And the number of deaths steadily climbed. At this time, when it was came to a head, it was people helping out other people. Social media came to the rescue.

Every refresh of your social feed no longer had people getting married. Now, on Twitter and Facebook, people were requesting oxygen cylinders, medicines and beds for loved ones. Even Instagram, that is normally reserved for extremely glamorous shots that are out of touch with reality, had people sharing stories about the requirements around the country. In these times, age, gender, state, financial status didn’t matter, only humanity did.  Social media was where you might find a lead. And it was where you could perhaps find a way to save someone you love.

Or so we thought. Till we started seeing various stories about women being harassed when they put up their requirements. At first, it was women getting obscene messages or phone calls when they put up requests or had their request shared by popular influencers. And while that is disgusting, perhaps no one has faced blatant calls for sex. Again, we are mistaken. A Twitter user recently shared how a friend of hers was asked for sex as a payment for an oxygen cylinder.

Let’s take stock of this situation. A woman was asked to sleep with a guy while she was in a vulnerable state because humanity can take a backseat if sex has to be had, clearly. This is absolute garbage and rightfully, everyone who has responded to this tweet and on other social media platforms has expressed how absolutely disgusting this is. From saying that the man should be named and shamed on social media, to filing a complaint with the police, suggestions came thick and fast.

While we think social media is a great place to find what you might be looking for, there is sinister side to it that we cannot overlook. Nothing is safe for women, even if we are just looking for oxygen.

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