Four obscene messages were posted in different parts of the restroom, asking the female athletes to masturbate before practice

Shocking harassment Note in Bluru stadium tells female athletes to masturbate before practiceRepresentational image
news Harassment Tuesday, December 13, 2016 - 16:12
On Monday, a few senior woman athletes who walked into the Kanteerava stadium in Bengaluru were in for a shock.
 
One of them was about to enter a restroom when the junior athletes told her not to do so. They said that there was something nasty inside.
 
The senior went in out of curiosity and was taken aback to see an obscene message pasted on the wall, signed by "sports authority".  
 
The message begins with:
 
“This is to inform you that, please do masturbating before practice…”
 
The message continues along this vein with more graphic instructions. The content deeply disturbed the female athletes, some of whom informed Manuja Veerappa of The Times of India. 
 
 
 
Manuja, a former athlete herself, says that the security at the stadium is inadequate. “People could enter easily with or without ID cards," she told TNM.

Four obscene messages were posted in different parts of the restroom, asking the female athletes to masturbate before practice, TOI reported.

Manuja believes that the messages are part of a larger problem.

“Female athletes suffer a lot. I had reported before on a male athlete who was a peeping Tom,” she says.

Other washrooms in the stadium were inspected and it was revealed that only the ladies' restroom was targeted.  The Department of Youth Empowerment and Sports (DYES) had recently introduced ID cards for coaches and athletes in a bid to check "eve teasing" and theft at the stadium.

DYES has started a probe on the incident, and sources say that it was most likely an insider job. The athletes also expressed their fear of being filmed without their knowledge, TOI said. Many were reluctant to enter the restroom as they believed that if someone had time to stick notes, they may have installed cameras too.

International athlete-turned coach, Pramila Aiyappa told TOI that she was shocked to hear of such an incident despite tight security at the stadium and expressed concern that parents may feel discouraged to send their girls to the stadium.

Nisha Millet, Arjuna Award winner and the only woman in the Indian swim team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, told TNM that the security at the stadium was extremely lax.

"The new security measure where persons who do not have athlete cards or ID cards cannot enter the stadium started after an incident that I had reported a while back. My bag and wallet were stolen. I ran all around the stadium and none of the ten guards knew or saw anyone. the security guards are always out for tea or are sleeping. It obviously becomes easy for someone to enter the stadium. I haven't run there in ages after the incident," she said.

She also said that women athletes have to be constantly aware of their surroundings and look over their shoulder. 

"These kind of instances do not happen abroad. The conditions for women are terrible. Kanteerava stadium has CCTV cameras but none of them works or they would have been able to identify who did this. At least security cameras in common areas have to be kept up to date. Also, the administration does not take responsibility or are not held accountable ever," she added.

Ashwini Nachappa, President of Bangalore Districts Athletics Association, told TNM that the conditions at the Kanteerava Stadium were as pathetic as ever.

"It is obviously some pervert who has done such a thing. Such instances should not be given any importance as more people will be encouraged. The posters must be torn and thrown away and the athletes must be counselled. Athletes have to be taught to be well prepared and how to take care of themselves. What they need is adequate comfort, security, motivation and facilities, which are not being taken care of adequately. They need guidance and counselling in handling such issues. It is not just for girls but also for the boys," she noted.

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