Staff Reporter

Handbook for Mahila, Sishu Desk

The book is first of its kind in the country

Quite helpful for investigating officers

BHUBANESWAR: Two years after the Orissa government decided to dedicate a team of police personnel in police stations to deal with violence against women and children, a legal compendium was prepared to make them update about their role and laws on the issue.

The 573-page handbook – ‘Mahila and Sishu Desk - Legal Compendium for Investigating Officers’ was released by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on the premises of the Orissa Legislative Assembly here on Friday.

“The compendium is an attempt to look into the laws related to women and children in the country in general and in the State of Orissa in particular. This is an effort to understand the hidden but accessible base to provide justice to clienteles,” Social Welfare Director Usha Padhee said.

She said the reference book prepared for the desk was the first of its kind in the country. The book deals with role of investigating officers in Mahila and Sishu Desk, legislations, executive circulars, notifications, National Human Rights Commission guidelines and international guidelines in relations to women and child.

Primary role

The separate wing was set up in 40 major police stations of the State designating a woman officer of the rank of sub-inspector as Desk Officer. She is now assisted by a woman constable.

In absence of woman police officer in a police station, a male junior sub-inspector is given charge and he is assisted by two women constables.

The primary role of the desk is to receive all complaints relating to women victims and children and listen to their grievances with empathy and ensure legal action.

Orissa High Court lawyer and author of the book Bibhu Prasad Tripathy said: “the compendium enumerates the law as it is prescribed under various statutes, orders and notifications and various hidden spaces available for providing access to justice delivery system.”

Book objective

Pointing out that the objective of the book was not over-ambitious, Mr. Tripathy said the limited intention was to identify the laws relating women and child for the investigating officers of this special desk in every police station.

He said the Mahila and Sishu Desk would have to often adopt non-traditional approach in solving the problems of victims.