India rape protest
A number of Indians protesting against violence on women SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP/Getty Images

Social media has been busy in India after a top official in the state of Kerala said on Sunday (14 August) that staring "annoyingly" at a woman for 14 seconds could land a man in jail. State Excise Commissioner Rishiraj Singh's comments went viral with hilarious comments posted on social media.

"There are sections in law to jail a man for annoyingly staring at a woman for 14 seconds. Please use it [the provisions in the law], if it is the case," he said.

Speaking at an event organised by a charity, he also urged women to carry knives and chilli sprays in their bags to protect themselves from hooligans disturbing them.

"Are you carrying a knife in your bag? Are you carrying chilli spray? Time is over for taking such precautions," he added, reports

One social media user, Varun Nair said: "Expect a rise in usage of stopwatches in Kerala." Another, said: "Instead of courting, everybody will be counting [the seconds]".

Another person said: "For a change, all men should wear veils to get protection." And another said: "I would add the rule should apply to women as well."

Another social media user asked: "What will happen if a man blinks while staring at her continuously for 14 seconds? ... what about a man who stares at a woman wearing sunglasses?"