BENGALURU: It was a historic day for Bengaluru police, who launched the first all-women night patrol team -- claimed to be the first in India, on Wednesday. Called ‘Shaurya Vahini’, the patrol team will comprise 13 women drivers of Hoysalas and 26 women riding Cheetah motorbikes. The women will work in night shifts, patrolling the streets under the jurisdiction of Koramangala police -- to begin with. These women police personnel were trained to ride bikes over the last 20 days. Though this is not the first time that women are out on patrol, it is the first instance where all-women teams are out at night. Prior to this, Hoysalas had one male and one female police personnel to handle incidents that involve women.
The all-women night patrol team is set to break stereotypes, but there are concerns over women police officers themselves becoming targets. Additional Commissioner of Police (East) S Murugan told The New Indian Express, “This is an initiative to empower women constables. When a (crime) incident occurs, at least 2-3 Hoysalas attend to the crime scene. So there will be male cops around.”
The plan involves the women teams remaining in constant touch with their male counterparts while on the beat, so tabs are kept on which locality they are moving while on patrol. “There will be challenges, but we can face them. First, we would like to see how this goes. If the women are comfortable, and once this is successful, we will consider extending it to other divisions,” he said. Sandalwood actor Ragini Dwivedi flagged off the teams, while City Police Commissioner Bhaskar Rao and Deputy Commissioner of Police (Southeast) Isha Pant were present along with Murugan.