All 96 police stations in the city will begin Saturday with a 45-minute training programme to sensitise personnel on women’s safety and protection of their rights. Two women police officers from each police station will conduct the session.
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, the training programme will be initiated by Rahat, a socio-legal support system started by NGO Majlis, that works closely with the state government in addressing women’s issues.
“The training aims at sensitising each and every officer at police stations across the city. When a woman walks into a police station, she should feel secure and should feel understood. Not always will a woman officer be available in the police station to deal with cases of sexual offence,” said assistant police inspector Neelima Kulkarni, who is associated with the programme.
In a 13-point charter, introduced as a ‘pledge’, touching upon various issues such as how to register a complaint lodged by a woman, how to take her statement, reasons for which a woman cannot be called to the police station after sunset, among others, will be read out at the function.
“Post the December 16 Delhi gangrape, Mumbai police put out a few educative films assuring women that they will be heard, but they were not disseminated efficiently. So those clips and a few others will be shown in this exercise,” said Persis Sidhwa from Majlis.
Along with the victims perspective, the training will also focus on the right approach to deal with women accused. “One of the 13 points in the pledge focuses on how a woman will not be called to the police station post sunset. Most of these are already a law or has been a landmark observation in Supreme court orders, but they are not always followed. So the pledge with the Commissioner of Police’s consent will be put up at all the police stations,” said Audrey D’mello, programme director with Majlis.