Rema Rajeshwari is a police superintendent in the Indian state of Telangana. Female officers make up 7% of police officers and 2% of leadership positions in the country, which makes Rajeshwari a big voice in a small crowd.
Rajeshwari has been on the front lines pushing for change in how India deals with sexual assault. She has sent out officers into local communities to help build connections with local leaders and reduce the stigma behind women reporting crimes. Rajeshwari was also involved with launching “SHE Teams“, which are groups of specially trained officers tasked with targeting the street harassment of women. This is a proactive approach to policing where officers on the street obtain evidence to arrest those engaged in harassment, meaning women do not have to report the crime themselves. Rajeshwari also speaks openly about how the media, and movies in particular, can lead to a romantic view of stalking and has been championing for a collective social responsibility to keep women safe.
“Fighting the mindset of society is a huge battle for every woman in uniform,” she says. “I have a responsibility to leave a legacy for the women who are going to join the force in the future.”
Rema Rajeshwari writes for The Times of India on issues relating to women: Rema Rajeshwari -The Times of India