PM for setting up of institutional mechanism for safety of women, children

New Delhi, June 5 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Wednesday called for the setting up of institutional mechanisms for the safety of women and children, especially in the country's urban areas.

Addressing a chief ministers' conference on internal security here, Dr. Singh said: "The second issue, which requires our collective action, is that of crimes against women and children. We have recently enacted several laws providing stringent punishment for such crimes and more sensitive treatment of victims during investigation and trial."

"These include the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013; The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act, 2012," he said.

"We also need to put in place institutional mechanisms to ensure the safety and security of women and children, particularly in the urban context. Such mechanisms include sensitization of police personnel, particularly at levels with which the victim comes into contact, setting up dedicated help-lines, measures for safety at the work place, and so on. I would urge all of you to explore how these outcomes can be best achieved," he added.

Asserting that capacity building and modernization of State Police Forces are absolutely essential for meeting the emerging challenges to internal security which range from terrorism to urban policing, Dr. Singh said: " The Centre remains committed to supporting States in this regard."

"The scheme for modernization of State Police Forces has been extended for a further period of five years with a total outlay of about Rs. 12,000 crore. An amount of Rs. 433 crore has been additionally provided for Mega City Policing in the six cities of Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad," he added.

Dr. Singh further informed that the central government was also committed to improving border management and coastal security.

"Greater focus and priority than before is being given to the work of fencing and construction of additional Border Outposts along the India-Bangladesh border, the construction and up-gradation of roads along the India-China, India-Nepal and India-Bhutan borders as well as the development of integrated check posts on the India-Pakistan and India-Nepal borders. We are also continuing implementation of the Border Area Development Programme and of Phase II of the Coastal Security Scheme," he said.

"The need for coordinated effort by Central and State agencies to deal with terrorism and other security challenges, irrespective of whether they are internal or external in origin, has been emphasized in all earlier conferences of Chief Ministers on internal security. In view of the criticality of this requirement, I would urge you once more to explore how we can achieve even better coordination between the Centre and States," he added. (ANI)

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