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Only 43 PCRs in 1,000-van fleet have women officers

Only 43 PCRs in 1,000-van fleet have women officers
This shortage brings in a great deal of dilemma and trouble particularly in attending crime against women cases, accident calls, brawls and feuds, and a dozen other awkward situations, said Sundari Nanda, Special Commissioner of Police (Operations).

She further said, when the proposal for recruiting 5,000 people for the Police Control Room (PCR) unit of Delhi Police was sent to the Ministry of Home Affairs around one year ago, this crisis was emphasised. But since the proposal has not been sanctioned yet, the crisis remains unaddressed. In PCR vans, women officials are stationed as either in-charge or gun-person, she added. Officials deployed in PCR vans say the crisis of women officials are most felt during accident cases.

“In case of accidents, the callers usually do not tell us if there are any women victims. Also the response time has to be kept very short for taking effective measures. The problem arises when we reach the spot and find that there are women victims. In such cases, we again have to make a call to get women officials, which may take another 10 – 12 minutes,” said a police official.

According to the Deputy Commissioner of Police (PCR), Braham Singh, Delhi Police carries 170 to 210 accident victims to hospitals on a daily basis, which is around three times of what the CAT ambulances carry. Another PCR van in-charge said that, “when a call is received or directed to us regarding a crime against women case, we have to make sure that a woman official is sent to the spot. Now, ensuring that increases our response time, which can be very dangerous.”

In an incident reported from south-east Delhi’s Nizamuddin area around three months ago, a young woman in an inebriated state was spotted by a PCR van on the road. Since there were no women officials in the van, they reported the matter to the concerned sub-inspector at the Jungpura police post. The officer reached the spot, made sure that the woman was escorted to her residence without any male police official touching her, and ended up being accused of molestation by the woman’s father. With the current strength of around 78,000 officials (with sanctioned strength of 84,000), Delhi Police has around 4,800 women officials in it, which is a little above six percent of the workforce. After the December 2012 gang-rape incident, 1,200 women officials were inducted in the force — half by creating new vacancies and half by making general vacancies reserved for women.
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