HYDERABAD: While patrol vehicles are policing Hyderabad, Cyberabad and Rachakonda at all hours, there is shortage of female personnel on night duty at police stations.
The number of policewomen in most stations ranges from three to four, but they usually finish duty at 8 pm.
So if a woman goes to a police station at night, she might find that there are only men around. This hard fact has come to light once again after the incident of Disha at Shadnagar on November 27.
Disha’s sister who approached the police late on Wednesday was in the company of police for around four hours but no policewoman was present.
This placed Disha’s sister and her mother in an uncomfortable space.
During May 2018, a 35-year-old woman had approached Banjara Hills police station late at night after her husband physically assaulted her.
As she was alone, police made her wait so that she could be sent for medical tests.
Feeling uncomfortable, she went to Osmania Hospital on her own, where she was allegedly raped by a ward boy. After this incident, instructions were issued that at least one policewoman be stationed at the division office to attend to emergencies.
The process was followed for a few months but was gradually shelved, the main reason being a shortage of policewomen.
There are some all-woman police stations under the three police commissionerates.
Hyderabad has three, Cyberabad and Rachakonda one each.
But during times of crisis, it is natural to rush to the nearest police station which seldom has a policewoman working at night. “We are evaluating steps to ensure there is at least one woman in every police station at night,” said a senior woman police official.