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You might be considering if India is in your mind to be the next holiday destination. However as with visiting any country it is useful to take precautions to ensure your safety.
Common sense will tell you that backpacking or other independent travel can be at a higher risk for incidents, since travelers are unfamiliar with what areas or activities that are safe, etc., where travelers who go on organized trips may benefit from the guidance of operators familiar with the region(s) being visited.
Can an independent traveler create a "safe" trip for themselves? Certainly, with research and planning. Use good common sense and practical advice from sites like TripAdvisor and Intelligent protection that offiers a free mapping tool with live security and terror related news feed: Travel Advice India
As an additional precaution and emergency measure, you should keep some emergency numbers handy while you are travelling in India.
100 - Police control room
1091 - Women help line (works across India)
181 - Women help line ( Supposed to work across India)
108 - Emergency help line
103 - Women safety helpline (Mumbai only)
The government of India is coming with a panic button in all phones bought in India post January 2017. If you are in trouble in India, dial 112 post January 2017. Otherwise you can dial the emergency numbers above to get connected to the police control room. However, emergency numbers don't always work in India because of different states, different rules etc.
You could keep an emergency app like ruly ( https://play.google.com/store/apps/de... ) handy and feed in 3 emergency contacts. What it does it that it connects you to the nearest police station straight away, without having to dial the control room and explain your situation, and you can seek help straight away. It also sends an alert with your location and address to your emergency contacts. They have 11,000 police stations covered out of the total 15,000 big police stations in India. You just have to press the power button twice to activate it.
Your nearest police station is usually best equipped and most likely to help you. So knowing its phone number would help. You need to give the local police a fighting chance to help you. Usually people don't even try that in India.