New Delhi: "Sir, some
men are following me", "My husband thrashed me again, please save
me" - these are some of the 2,000 calls that Delhi Police Special
Commissioner Sudhir Yadav has dealt with since a special helpline
was activated in the wake of the Dec 16, 2012, gangrape of a
Lieutenant Governor Tejendra Khanna appointed Yadav the nodal
officer to deal with women-related complaints in the capital and
his mobile number - 9818099012 - was activated Dec 25, 2012.
Being the first ever helpline under the direct monitoring of a
senior police officer, it means quick results.
"The need for a senior officer monitoring complaints arose because
though we already have two helplines - 1091 and 1096 - that
together received close to 25,000 complaints last year, we found
that the redressal mechanism was not adequate," a police officer
told IANS, speaking on condition of anonymity.
This apart, a 181 helpline started by the Delhi government Dec 31,
2012, has received 40,000 calls since then, but most of them were
trial calls to check whether the number was functional, an offical
"The frequency of the calls was very high in the first two weeks
of January, but it has decreased now," Kulanand Joshi, additional
Secretary to Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and in-charge of the
helpline, told IANS.
As for Yadav, his phone has not stopped ringing since it was
While Yadav himself takes some of the calls, he has a designated
team that monitors all calls.
All calls are also recorded so that if the joint commissioner of
police (Traffic) needs to be brought into the loop, this can be
immediately done. The need for this was felt because the Dec 16
gangrape took place in a moving bus. This apart, there have been
instances of women being abducted or raped in cars.
Of the 2,000 calls received in the last 45 days, most related to
being stalked, getting obscene calls or facing domestic violence -
a sad reality proving that the city still has not learnt any
"I got at least 300 calls daily last month. Each call was attended
properly and immediate necessary action was also taken," Yadav
"We maintain a record of each and every call and ensure proper
follow up," he added.
In addition, Yadav interacts with several women's NGOs on the last
Friday of every month to take stock of the situation at the ground
"I have interacted with around 30 NGOs so far and the sessions
were very informative. we got to know about our performance and
whether our policies were working or not," said Yadav.
"We have discussed several steps to ensure more security for
women. I have asked the NGOs to provide self-defence training to
young girls like we did last year," he added.
Delhi Police had organized a self-defence training camp in Oct,
2012, in west Delhi's Nanakpura area which was attended by around
100 young working women from the lower income groups.
The women were taught judo, karate, kendo, sumo, aikido, shorinji,
kempo and naginata by a visiting Japanese martial arts delegation.
"We were pleased with the results of the workshop and so were the
participants. More of such camps would surely be organized soon,"
Yadav further said that he has also requested the NGOs to provide
women volunteers who can help in managing women helplines in
police stations across the city.
(Alok Singh can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)