The day before yesterday, I was traveling a short distance in a local metro feeder bus, and as I was about to get off at my stop, a guy went from behind me to the fore to get off and I noticed a moment later that my phone was no longer in my pocket. I raised an alarm and noticed my phone in that guy’s hand. I simply grabbed it with whatever might I had. And like this, we got off the bus, gripping the phone, not letting the other person get away with it. Within seconds, as it happens in India, a crowd gathered around us. And forced the guy to leave the phone and let me prove that it was indeed my phone. So I waited till my phone switched on (as the switch off button had been pushed in the tussle). And then showed my pictures on my phone in order to prove the point. People from the crowd then asked me to hit the guy, but me being the non-violent person that I am, did no such thing. I didn’t even use any swear words, I just realized later that I had been speaking at a higher volume resulting in my throat to hurt a bit. Some people from the crowd told me to go away then since I had got my phone back. So that’s what I did. I also noticed that I was shaking a little bit and quickly half-ran, half-walked to the place I had been going to.
Later while reflecting upon the incident, I realized the following couple of things. For every one bad stranger, there are 5-10 amazing strangers, who are kind and would help a person in need. We all should aim to help those in need, raise our voices collectively for the ones who are being oppressed. Many times, in our fast-paced lives, we hardly have any time to help others but just a few moments of our time can make some difference in their lives.
Another thing that I was happy about was that during the whole incident, I passed as a boy though as just a 12-13-year-old boy but still a boy. I felt a pinch of bravery in raising my voice since I am such a timid person afraid of confrontations and proud of not abandoning my principles of non-violence and no swearing if it can be avoided.
I had also been thinking of what else I could have done. Perhaps I should have called the police or dragged that person with the help of the crowd to the nearest police van which must have been hardly 5 minutes away.
Also, I hope to be more cautious and stay alert about my possessions while traveling in buses. As should be everyone.