Tuesday, Jul 26, 2016
He had just finished watching the recent Tamil film Kabali, but what happened next to Mr Vasanth Paul would be worthy of its own movie as well.
Mr Paul, a model and photographer from the south Indian city of Chennai, recounted on Facebook about how he managed to rescue a girl from being raped as he was returning home after the film on Friday (July 23).
In his post, he said that he had stopped to relieve himself on the way home after catching the first screening of the blockbuster film, starring superstar actor Rajinikanth, when heard sounds of distress.
At first, he thought that the sound was coming from a cat or another animal, but as he was about to move away he heard a faint cry calling out for help.
Mr Paul then saw three men surrounding a woman and trying to undress her. He immediately shouted at them and jumped in to intervene.
A fist fight ensued, and one of the men also tried to strangle him with a thick jute rope. However, the distraction worked and the woman was able to escape in time.
She managed to get the attention of an autowala (automatic rickshaw driver), and together the pair managed to fight off the three assailants, who ran away.
Mr Paul said that he was unable to find any police officers in the vicinity depsite circling the area for half an hour after the incident. However, the woman did not want to lodge a police report.
He also posted three photographs showing the thick bruising that he had sustained across his neck where he had been choked. "I have so many scars on my body but I'm sure I'll be proud of these," he wrote.
"Moral of the story: Don't be afraid to face a situation, just cos you're alone. If the cause is right, the world would join you right away. Stay safe people, and look out for one another (sic)," he reflected.
Indian news network NDTV reported that Mr Paul's post has gone viral in India. It has garnered over 140,000 likes, and has been shared over 35,000 times.
India has frequently been in the spotlight for the high levels of violence against women there. The case that received the most attention was the fatal gang rape of a student on a bus in Delhi in 2012, which sparked some of the biggest demonstrations in India's recent history, AFP reported.
More recently, a 21-year-old woman was allegedly gang-raped by a group of five men, some of whom had been charged for a previous attack on her.