SC, HC rulings on security yet to be implemented

India on 28 June 2013
Location : Mumbai, India | Source : The Times of India

MUMBAI: In the last few years, the Supreme Court and Bombay High Court have instructed the state government and railway authorities to ensure the safety of women in trains. But experts and activists say the response is far from satisfactory.

"There is a lack of sensitivity from the authorities to address the issue of safety of women in trains in Mumbai," says advocate Rajiv Chavan, counsel for Help Mumbai Foundation, which filed a PIL. Since 2011, a proposal to deploy 300 home guards, including 100 women, on trains, was hanging fire as the state and Railways couldn't agree on sharing costs for additional staff. The HC later ordered the Railways to bear 50% costs. The PIL also highlighted information obtained from the Railway Police Force, revealing less than 10% of its staff were women. Of 3,371 RPF personnel on CR and WR, only 231 were women.

Moreover, in 2011, the RPF was yet to fill over 2,567 posts.

"The presence of women constables in trains is very important as it instills confidence, women commuters are more comfortable speaking to a policewoman," said Chavan.

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