The Delhi Government’s 181 helpline for women in distress, which was launched in the wake of the December 16 gang-rape, has received over two lakh calls in the past four-and-a-half months.

Officials said most of the calls received by the round-the-clock helpline were related to stalking, eve-teasing, obscene calls and sexual abuse and domestic harassment.

The helpline was launched on December 31 last year to help women in distress and check the increasing rate of crime against women.

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on Thursday reviewed the functioning of the helpline at a high-level meeting attended by representatives of various stakeholders, including the police, Delhi Commission for Women and Department of Women and Child Welfare.

The Chief Minister asked all stakeholders to work in close cooperation to ensure a better response system for women in distress and suggested that cyber crime targeting women should also be taken up seriously as there has been increasing cases of such crimes.

Ms. Dikshit, who was the brain behind launch of the helpline, also asked the Health Department to procure five well-equipped ambulances exclusively to offer medical help to women victims of various forms of violence.

Following a suggestion by Ms. Dikshit, the stakeholders decided to meet at least once in two months to review the functioning of the 181 helpline as well as the follow up response mechanism by various agencies.

The helpline operates from the Chief Minister’s office in Delhi Secretariat. Expressing satisfaction over performance of people running the helpline, Ms. Dikshit said a number of States have shown interest to set up similar facilities for women. “Many States have shown interests in setting up similar helplines,” she said.

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