CHENNAI: The first bench of the Madras High Court on Thursday ordered notice to the authorities concerned on a public interest writ petition praying for a direction to the State government to create safety zones for women in public places.
The bench of Chief Justice V K Tahilramani and Justice M Duraiswamy issued the notice when a petition from Kanimozhi Mathi and seven other advocates came up for hearing on Thursday.
Petitioners expressed serious concern over the absence of safety for women in the State, especially when they travel for work or education during odd hours. They wanted such zones to be manned by police and social welfare officers near every major bus stand and railway station in the State.
They also prayed for establishment of all-women hostels on the model of the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) so that they could serve as safe places for women’s short stay during night travel in connection with their employment or education. They alleged that the police did not give due attention to sexual harassment complaints from women.
The higher officials should ensure that women victims are handled with utmost respect in police stations. The government pleader told the judges that the State government was committed to ensuring women’s safety and security by extending the ‘Nirbhaya funds’ to various safety schemes.