Plainclothesmen will now soon commute in buses plying on 15 different routes in north Goa to check safety of women passengers.
Outgoing Superintendent of Police (North Goa) Vijay Singh told Herald that policemen either in civil clothes or in uniform will patrol in public transport system to ensure women are not molested, man handled or subjected to rude behaviour.
The entire stretch from the main Panjim bus stand to Goa University, Bambolim to Goa University within the Agassaim jurisdiction; Pernem – Mapusa – Panjim; entire coastal stretch are among the other bus routes identified so far for policing. Morning rush hours from 8am to 10am, 1pm to 2pm and 4pm to 6pm have been identified for this exercise.
Similarly, patrolling at 57 schools and colleges located at various places across the entire North Goa district will be conducted to keep a tab on incidents of women harassment.
The personnel will cover Dhempe College of Commerce at Altinho, Dhempe College of Arts & Science in Miramar, GMC Dental and GMC Hospital including the hostels, Goa University, St Xavier College, St Michael High School at Anjuna, St Joseph HC at Arpora, Engineering College in Farmagudi, Pharmacy College Ponda, Ayurvedic College Shiroda and other educational institutions located in different parts in the north district.
The implementation comes merely four days after a security review committee, which met last Friday, decided to step up measures for safety of women.
The decision stemmed from the recent outrage over the Delhi gangrape incident.
Meanwhile, the recently launched 1091 helpline number has been receiving distress calls from women though overall there’s a lukewarm response.
Quick response to calls is being appreciated with two rescues taking place in the north and south Goa.
However, women activists are not contented on the jurisdiction issue. Convener of Bailancho Saad, Sabina Martins said the women police stations in North and South Goa, which are asked to monitor all calls made on 1091 in the central police control room, should not be restricted to a specific place.
“Why are calls only from Panjim handled by women police station? The jurisdiction is all over Goa then why it is being limited to Panjim,” she questioned.
On the other hand, Chairperson Goa State Commission for Women Ezilda Sapeco said the functioning of the helpline was the need of the hour.
“The helpline number did exist before but it was non-functional…Instead of criticizing the initiative, all calls need to be monitored more effectively. It will take some time to function well,” she said. [H]