Amidst several cases of sexual assault and rape on women in Mumbai, the police officials in the city have formed a team to prevent crimes against women in every police station of Mumbai. The officials have named it Nirbhaya Squad.
Recently, a harrowing incident was reported from Mumbai where a woman was stabbed in her private parts by a man. She passed away due to the injuries while undergoing treatment at the hospital. Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Uddhav Thackeray held a meeting with Director General of Police and Mumbai police and other senior police officers at the state police headquarters regarding the police department’s measure for the safety of women. After that,the commissioner of police Hemant Nagrale issued a circular regarding the Nirbhaya Squad.
What will be Nirbhaya Squad consist of ?
As per the officials, the said squad will consist of a lady sub-inspector, a woman constable along with a male constable and a driver. They will regularly be on patrolling duty near their assigned police stations. The squads will work to prevent the cases of harassment of girls, women and children.
A female assistant commissioner of police of an inspector level woman officer will be the nodal officer at each of the five regions of the city and will frequently review and supervise the functioning of Nirbhaya Squad.
How will the squad function ?
As per the official circular, the officials in the Nirbhaya Squad will be gathering information about the wrongdoings from children homes, orphanages, hostels and other such places. The team is also supposed to create awareness about the punishments and harsh rulings under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act in areas that report the maximum number of POCSO cases in the city. Slum areas such as Cuffe Parade, Kurla, Antop Hill-Dharavi, Malwani, Bhandup others have been mentioned.
A Nirbhaya complaint box will be kept at these places (including schools and colleges) and a record will have to be maintained on action taken after receiving complaints in these boxes. The team will also create a different database of all sexual offenders who have been accused of such crimes in the last five years. The squad will monitor the activities of such individuals to ensure they are not targeting women again after being released from jail.
The designated squad will have secret pen-cameras for tracking the movements of stalkers. The videos shot will make for evidence in cases of stalking, as per the police circular. A police officer told media that the Nirbhaya Squad will be different from the women cells in 95 police stations of Mumbai. They will focus on prevention of crimes against women by tracking the offenders, educating people about their legal rights, creating awareness, identifying survivors, encouraging them to file a report, counsel them, teaching self defence technics, guiding students, distributing booklets on laws and other such duties. The officials in the Nirbhaya Squad will be given two days of training at a special training centre.
“The Nirbhaya Squads are being formed with an aim to create a safer environment for women and children in the society and also to create fear of law in minds of sexual offenders and deterring them from indulging in crimes,” Mumbai Police said in a statement released on Tuesday.