ATTEMPTED RAPE CASE: TWO WEEKS LATER, VICTIM BATTLES TRAUMA

MUSCAT: More than two weeks after filing a complaint of attempted rape against a taxi driver, the victim says she is still so traumatised that she is afraid of stepping out of her house, especially in the evenings.

The expatriate woman has filed a complaint against a taxi driver and his companion for trying to sexually assault her in the taxi she had hired from Al Khuwayr on August 18.

Although the 26 year old supermarket receptionist has resumed work, she is going through what doctors say is a “traumatic re-experience”.

A colleague said that the woman resumed work after being treated for injuries received during the attack, but the fear is evident.

“Thankfully, she does not need to commute to work as the company accommodation where she lives is quite near to the supermarket. It’s a big relief to her.”

The colleague added that she avoids hiring taxis and has almost stopped stepping out except for work. “She has been to the police station to identify her assaulters, who are reported to be living in two different parts of the country. The only evidence against the accused is the taxi number.”

The victim said that the taxi driver was a short, dark man in his 20s; his companion was tall and around the same age.

“I am always cautious. I had asked my cousins seeing me off to note down the taxi number. Now, I have stopped stepping out in the evenings.”

On her condition, a city-based psychiatrist said. “Chances of a traumatic re-experience are very high in this case. The incident will keep coming to the mind leading to anxiety.

“Sharing and talking are the two best possible ways to erase this mental trauma. She should speak it out with those whom she trusts. Counselling can also help.”

The psychiatrist said that victims of sexual harassment often develop fear of similar surroundings. “To tide over this fear, a platform where they can share their feelings with loved ones should be created.”

A senior human resources executive from her workplace said that the company is making arrangements for its PRO to accompany her to the police station for probe and identification as she has been unable to find a native speaker to help her record her statement.

SOURCE: MUSCAT DAILY