Karthik S. Kateel and his mother Shobhalatha have been visiting college after college teaching girls self-defence. So far the duo has covered 287 institutions in the State and trained more than 70,000 girls in self-defence techniques. On Friday, they presented a programme for the benefit of students of the Government Science College in Hassan.
“Normally, karate or taekwondo is promoted for girls for self-defence. But aged women would find it difficult to master these arts. My techniques do not include either kicks or blocks. All one needs is the presence of mind and ability to identify the weak points in the attacker so that they can easily escape unhurt,” he said.
In the 75-minute long presentation, Mr. Kateel demonstrated five techniques on how women can hit back when attacked by a stranger or a group of people. “The eyes, nose and neck are sensitive parts of the human body. Those who have attended my sessions can easily pick up techniques on how to hit back and get a dangerous situation under their control. My techniques are simple and useful for women of all age groups,” he said.
Around 700 girls of Government Science College attended Mr. Kateel’s programme. His mother Shobhalatha (46) often plays a role in the demonstrations. The 24-year old Kateel has completed his B.Sc., and is presently pursuing a Master’s degree in English literature.
When a series of incidents of sexual harassment of women were reported a year and a half ago, Mr. Kateel, who by then had secured black-belt in Karate, thought of conducting a self-defence demonstration for women. Interestingly, his mother was his first student. “My mother found the techniques easy to execute. This gave me confidence. I hold my demonstrations without any monetary expectation from institutions. On some occasions, students and teachers generously contribute and I use these funds to conduct more programmes so that more students are benefitted,” he said.