Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today said that there was a need to change the mindset of the people towards women and added that those with ill intentions should not be left scot-free.
"Even today you (women) fear about public transport, you think ten times before going out in night, the functions which are dominated by men, you think many times before going into such functions, because the mindset of man has not changed. We have to change the mindset of men, but we have to punish those who don't think right about women," Omar said while addressing a packed house at Sher-i-Kashmir Bhavan here.
The CM regretted that until a heinous crime takes place against women, the people and the administration don't pay attention towards their situation.
Pointing the Delhi gang rape in which a 23-year-old paramedical student was brutalised in a moving bus last year, Omar said, until such crime did not take place we didn't change our laws to secure women.
"We don't think about women until a heinous incident like the rape of one of our sister's took place in Delhi. Until then we are not concerned about what happens with our mothers and sisters. Only after such incident we asked for a change in the law. These incidents should stop," Omar said during the Women's Day function organised by National Conference.
He also urged the women to become a part of the transformation.
"The transformation which you want to bring in, become a part of that transformation. You become a medium, only then we will change, only then our society will change, only then we will be forced to listen to your concerns and address them," he insisted.
Meanwhile, CPI(M) state secretary M Y Tarigami expressed grief over the rape incidents in the state and said that the figures given by the Home Ministry were unfortunate.
"The most unfortunate thing is that in our state, the Home minister in a reply to a question in the upper House yesterday said that the rape and molestation cases in our state during the last three years have increased sharply, more than 9,000 cases have been registered," he said.
Social Welfare minister, Sakina Itoo, said laws to protect women can only become effective if mindset of people is changed.
BJP Mahila Morcha president Priya Sethi too pointed out the discrimination being faced by women and said it was unfortunate that they are not treated as equals.