Andhra Pradesh

Curbing crime against women with an iron hand

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City all set to handle cases under Disha Act as women’s police station is likely to be upgraded and strengthened

The Women Police Station (WPS) in Visakhapatnam will be upgraded as ‘Disha Police Station’ with additional infrastructure and staff soon. The station, which is housed near Police Commissionerate, is also likely to be shifted to a new block that is coming up at Yendada.

Director-General of Police Gautam Sawang had said that the WPS in the city would be strengthened with additional staff and infrastructure since cases under Disha Act were going to be dealt by it. Keeping this in view, the city police have proposed upgrading the station to a new building block, as the existing station does not have the required infrastructure.

"There will be additional staff in the station. It needs to have a reception, children care room, counselling centre, chamber for three/four sub-inspectors, which the existing WPS does not have. So the proposal for upgradation of WPS and its renaming as Disha Police Station has been moved," said a senior police officer.

According to the officer, the new building complex would house various other stations including PM Palem Law & Order, traffic stations, apart from ACP (Madhurwada) office. A block is likely to be given to the WPS.

"The building is in the final stages. May be it will be ready within 15 days to a month. If the proposal gets the final nod from the higher officials, we will inaugurate the building during the next visit of the Chief Minister," said the officer.

Disha Act

The city police are yet to receive proper guidelines about the Disha Act. It is learnt that Crime Investigation Department (CID) is preparing the standard operating procedure (SOP) which is yet to released to the department.

"Disha Act cannot be invoked in every case. It may depend on the severity of the case. It is also yet to be clarified whether local Investigating Officer (I.O) can book Disha Act or is it the the DSP/ACP rank officer. Officials concerned are working on the guidelines," said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone I) S. Ranga Reddy.

In the meanwhile, sensitisation programmes are being conducted over the Disha Act in the city. Assistant Commissioner of Police (WPS) Prem Kajal said meetings were being conducted with ACPs and Station House Officers (SHOs) on how to have a quality investigation within the short time.

"All we need is quality investigation in short time. We are learning about the provisions, how to receive victims, how to collect the evidence, opinions from prosecutors. In the meanwhile we are expecting the SOP soon," said Ms. Kajal.

Staff

According to Commissioner of Police R.K. Meena, at least three additional sub-inspector rank officers, preferably women will be posted in the police station. This apart, additional staff would be given to the WPS. He said that cases booked under this Act would have special teams for investigation. Police officials handling Disha Act cases will have an increment in pay by 30%.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 3:44:29 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/curbing-crime-against-women-with-an-iron-hand/article30552816.ece

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