An Indian manufacturer is marketing a lightweight revolver designed for women’s self defense. The small gun hit the Indian market a little more than a year after 2012’s Delhi gang rape, which drew international attention.
Named ‘Nirbheek’ (“brave” in Hindi) to honor the Delhi victim, the .32 caliber revolver is about the same size as a 16-ounce bottle of soda and weighs 500 grams. The Nirbheek is manufactured by the Indian Ordnance Factory, and is crafted from a titanium alloy making it about eight ounces lighter than other revolvers of its kind.
“After the gang rape incident, our researchers were working on a revolver which is very light and can be carried by women in their purses or small handbags,” Abdul Hamid, the general manager of the factory producing the revolver told the India Times.
The 2012 Delhi gangrape victim was a physiotherapy intern who was beaten and attacked on a bus by six men. She died from her injuries thirteen days later in a Singapore hospital. The accused men were arrested and charged with sexual assault and murder. Four of the adult defendants were found guilty and sentenced to death.
The Nirbheek is being sold for 1,22,360 rupees, which is about $2,000. Since the product’s introduction, Forbes reports that 100 orders have been made, 75 of which have been by women. The small gun will be delivered in an ornamental box which the BBC describes as a “deep maroon jewelry case” designed to appeal to women. Though the Nirbheek is not restricted to female customers, the manufacturers are marketing the gun to women, particularly in India.
“We want to first cater to the demand from within the country,” Hameed told Forbes on Monday.