In a bid to beef up security measures for women, patrolling Mumbai police will be seen with body-worn cameras. This will start in January with an objective to deter criminals.

What are body-cams or body-worn cameras?

Body-cams are small cameras clipped into police personnel’s uniform, waist belt or headset. These are turned on to record their encounters with the public. The footage is uploaded on an external database and the images can be used for facial recognition.

Key Takeaways:

  • From January onwards, Mumbai police will be patrolling with body-worn cameras. 
  • The objective is to ensure women’s safety by deterring criminals.
  • This technology was used in US, the UK and Australia.
  • Kerala, Ahmadabad, Delhi and Lucknow have also taken multiple steps for the same cause.

Dual purpose

The technology is not only beneficial for public surveillance and accountability but also for documenting any instance of police misconduct. It is also used in US, the UK and Australia.

The technology will be first used in a city police patrol unit, said a senior official from the department. Other cities, like Delhi, have tested such cameras. It was, however, done only for their traffic police units or for special law and order occasions.

The number of cameras that will be procured is unclear but they will be arriving within the next two months.

Also: Urban Planning, Citizen Movements Key To Women’s Safety: Activists

Similar initiatives in other cities

Mumbai isn’t the only city where initiatives of this kind are being taken.

Bodycams are small cameras clipped into police personnel’s uniform, waist belt or headset. These are turned on to record their encounters with the public.

In September this year, the Delhi Government has also decided to deploy home guard marshals for clusters buses to provide safety and security for the passengers, especially women who travel late in the night for work.

Besides, the Delhi Government has also started the project of installing 25 Lakh CCTV cameras across the city and 2.10 lakh street lights for the safety of women and residents of Delhi.

Ahmedabad police also stationed 100 technologically equipped vans known as ‘Nirbhaya’. These vans are equipped with state-of-the-art technological advancements with efficient detection systems to identify and catch the culprits.   The van is aimed at controlling and penalizing eve-teasing, harassment, chain snatching and other crimes against women.

Also: Kerala Set To Build ‘She-Corridor’ For Women’s Safety

Similarly, in an attempt to enhance women’s safety, the Lucknow district authorities have recently banned playing ‘songs’ in autos. The authorities said that this decision will save women from vulgar elements when they sit in an auto. So for now, playing songs has been totally banned in autos and tempos in Lucknow.

Last year, Kerala planned something innovative to improve the safety scene for women in the state. The City Corporation launched ‘She-Corridor’. It had seating facilities, CCTV cameras, she-toilets, napkin vending machines and walls with paintings of women’s success stories. The state government took this effort to make its women feel safe and experience a friendly environment around them.

Also: Three Lakh CCTV Cameras To Be Installed In Delhi For Women’s Safety

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