Monday, January 7, 2013

Women's Safety in NCR

It has been a pretty disturbing scenario from the time "Amanat's" case was reported and the people had taken the protest route to awaken the authorities.  But even after all that, there had been a repeated news of Rape, Molestation and Murder of Females (including Minors) from the NCR region.  The threat has risen to such a level that the Women Co-workers in the IT and ITES industry are either looking at Day Shifts or quitting their jobs altogether.  The safety of Females is the demand of the time.  It is not that the case of Amanat has highlighted, but a requirement that has been long over looked or say under rated.

Even after Amanat's case, it so seems that the Government & Authorities are still sleeping for the repeated news on Rape and Murder.  Though they say that the Security Guards are deployed on the Buses, but is that enough?  Are these security guards trained enough and are they armed to face the criminals who generally carry one or other deadly weapon with them?  Are the Security Guards themselves brave enough to face such criminals?  Most of such questions would be answered in Negative as per the "interview" of one such security guard on a radio station revealed.  Incidentally, the Government & Authorities much have gone insensitive and deaf once again.

I am not sure why Government & Authorities are not considering and installing CCTV cameras in the Buses?  Why shouldn't installation of CCTV Cameras be made compulsory in ALL Buses Plying in NCR as well as the entire Nation? Why shouldn't RTO as well as Other Authorities not make is Mandatory for a CCTV Camera in the Buses to the extent that a non-working CCTV Camera be the condition for Canceling the Permit and Registration of the respective Bus. The CCTV Camera requirement needs to be treated in the same fashion as the "Black Box" is treated for the Flights. The Government & Authorities should also make it compulsory for the new Buses to have a pre-installed CCTV Camera and recording mechanism and without the same, the registration & plying permit should not be processed.

Apart from the installation of CCTV Cameras in the Buses, it Government and Authorities should also be working towards installation of CCTV Cameras at say every half a km range on all the city routes and ensure that the recordings are monitored. A public and private partnership needs to be evaluated for this purpose. This would help ensure that the other modes or travel say Cabs, autos and private vehicles are also monitored. This will also help ensure that onroad corruption is monitored and tracked.

Additionally, emergency calling phones must be installed across the city so that anyone can pick the phone and get connected to the emergency services, this would help report incidents faster. A Police and Citizen Charter needs to be established for faster deployment of support for the incidents reported and activities needs to run in parallel.  This would help in wider coverage and would ensure that the Police department doesn't act lazy or does just shoo away the complainants like the case of Dallupura where a Minor was raped and Murdered, but the case was never registered as the Cops didn't want to get another case highlighted in public.

There are many other measures that should include but not restricted to - 
  1. Training the Cops and Security Guards
  2. Providing Working Arms to the Cops and Security Guards and ensuring that there are two Guards per Bus
  3. Making it Zero Tolerance to Drink in a Vehicle whether Moving or Parked (there are many cases where people from various sections of society do this)
  4. Making is Mandatory to not Have Liquor in the Vehicle, it must be stored in boot or trunk of the Vehicle
  5. Making it Mandatory for the Schools to provide "Self Defense" training to Students at No Additional Cost with quarterly reports published to the Public-Private Forum.  Each Student should be enrolled and provided training on an ongoing basis rather than just once.
  6. Residential Societies should also conduct "Self Defense" workshops for its inhabitants regularly and train the trainer approach needs to be used to ensure a wider coverage of the same
  7. Parents must also ensure that their children do participate in the training as conducted and should be made responsible to sign the reports that are submitted to the Public-Private Forum.
This is just the start and certainly not the end for all of us and we all need to diligently work towards a safer society.  Certainly Government & Authorities would succeed only when we cooperate with them and we align to the laws....

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