NEW DELHI: The centre has directed all state governments to speed up the process of appointment of special Mahila Police Volunteers and submit a report on the same as fast as possible.
In an advisory issued to all state governments, the Union Home Ministry has said that scheme should be started from districts which have the highest levels of violence against women or have the lowest sex-ratios.
In order to promote the objective of providing help and support to the victims of violence and harassment, such interventions like deployment of Mahila Police Volunteers are essential to improve women’s safety, the advisory said.
In view of the above, it may be requested that directions may be issued to all concerned for adoption and implementation of this initiative. It will be highly appreciated if developments in this regard are be intimated to the undersigned at the earliest after initiating necessary action at your end.
The scheme may be initially implemented in one or two districts, to be selected on the basis of crimes against women as well as low sex-ratio.
According to the scheme which is an initiative of the Women and Child Development Ministry, the special protection officer, called 'Mahila Police Volunteer' (MPV), will be a woman of more than 21 years of age with no political affiliation and a minimum qualification of having passed standard XII.
MPVs will be appointed in each village. They will play a crucial role in creating community engagement to address violence against women by informing police about any unpleasant behaviour or instances against women or girls and missing children.
The MPVs will be provided training in counselling and legal literacy by the WCD ministry.
The volunteer will report incidents of missing children, violence against women such as domestic violence, child marriage, dowry harassment, trafficking and any other form of violence faced by women in both public and private spaces.
They will also help spreading awareness about services including women, police and children helpline numbers.