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antirapebramontage“The Delhi gang rape was the trigger. But also the numbness of women – and law-makers against this social menace. It was high time we women needed a change.”

Manisha Mohan is an aeronautical engineering student at SRM University in the Indian city of Chennai.

She is also a young woman in a country that was thrown into chaos following the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old student in Delhi in December, 2012.

Together with fellow students Niladhri Basu Bal and Rimpi Tripathi, she decided to use her technical skills to try and do something to help protect women like her.

After talking to women living in hostels about their experiences of harassment – called Eve-teasing in India – they developed a bra designed to deliver a 3800kv electric shock to any would-be rapist.

The SHE (Society Harnessing Equipment) can also send a text message to a relative or friend and the local police station, with the GPS coordinates of the victim’s location, says Ms Mohan.

The bra is fitted with a pressure sensor connected to an electric circuit. So how can the wearer be sure they won’t be on the receiving end of a hefty electric jolt?

“Firstly, the system is placed in a bi-layer fabric, which ensures insulation to the victim,” says Ms Mohan.

The team collect a Gandhian Young Technological Innovation Award for the lingerie

“Also the pressure values for squeeze, pinch and grab have been calibrated. The force applied on hugging does not satisfy the conditions for actuation of the device, and there is also a self-actuation switch where a woman can actuate it by herself when in unsafe environment.”

Credit: BBC