Women Safety Current Affairs - 2020

Tracking Progress of ‘Safe City Programme’

According to recent media reports, not much progress has been made in making cities safer for women even one year after launch of Safe City programme. It highlights poor guidelines and improper utilization of funds and focus on general elections as main reasons for it.

About Safe City programme

  • It was launched with objective of strengthening safety and security of women in public places.
  • It is being implemented by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in consultation with Ministry of Women and Child Development (MoW&CD), Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Ministry of Information Technology (MeitY), respective Municipal & Police Commissioners of cities and civil society organizations.
  • Initially it was launched in 8 cities, which include Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Lucknow, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad. Lucknow was first city in country to clear the project in In November 2018.
  • It was approved with total cost of Rs.194.44 crore under Nirbhaya Fund Scheme (by empowered Committee of officers for Nirbhaya funds). It is implemented as Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) with Centre and State sharing fund in 60:40 ratio.
  • It includes identifying crime hotspots and placing them under CCTV coverage, drone-based surveillance, deployment of automated number plate reading (ANPR) equipment through an integrated smart control room.

Major component of Safe City Project

  • Setting an Integrated Smart Control Room.
  • Setting Pink Out-posts (exclusively administered by Women police) for facilitating ease of filing complaint by women; Pink Patrols of Women police.
  • Setting Women Help Desks in all Police Stations with Counsellors.
  • Augmentation of existing Asha Jyoti Kendra.
  • Implementing Safety measures in buses, including Cameras.
  • Improving Street Lighting in identified crime Hotspot areas.
  • Setting up Pink Toilets.
  • Integratig Women power-help line with single Emergency number ‘112’

Safe City Project, Lucknow:

  • Helpline 1090 was launched in Uttar Pradesh to prevent atrocities against women.
  • Gender sensitization awareness campaigns etc.

Nirbhaya Fund

It was set up by UPA government with an initial corpus of Rs. 1,000 crore after horrific gang rape of young woman in New Delhi in December 2012. Nirbhaya is the name she was referred to by media, and fund seeks to ensure safety of women across country. In past years, fund amount has increased to Rs. 3,600 crore, but according to reports money isnot being used.

Recent Updates

The government launched Safe City Implementation Monitoring Portal with aim of monitoring safe city project, as aid in online tracking of deployment of assets and infrastructure.

My Circle Safety App

My Circle App was launched by Bharti Airtel in collaboration with FICCI Ladies Organisation (FLO). My Circle app aims to help women in case they face any problem or a panic situation.

My Circle App

  • My Circle app enables women to send SOS alerts to any five of their family or friends in 13 languages including English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Marathi, Punjabi, Bengali, Urdu, Assamese, Oriya, and Gujarati.
  • A woman in distress can send an SOS alert by pressing the SOS prompt on the app.
  • The SOS alert can also be activated by voice command through Siri on iOS and the statement by Airtel has stated that he voice activation through Google Assistant will soon be available on Android devices also.
  • the SOS alert will send the user’s location over SMS to the five contacts selected by the user and advise them to immediately reach out or respond to the emergency situation.
  • The app also enables the family or friends to track the location on real time through the link that is sent as part of the alert SM
  • The free-to-download app is available on Google Play store (Android) and will be available on the App Store (iOS) soon.

My Circle App is carrier agnostic which would work on phones with any telecom service network, both Airtel and non-Airtel.