It has taken the state six years since the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence (DV) Act, 2005, came into force to appoint 26 full-time protection officers and legal advisors each to help aggrieved women seek medical and legal help.
The officers and advisers were issued appointment letters on January 5, 2013, according to an affidavit filed by Ujjwal Uke, principal secretary, woman and child development department on Tuesday in response to a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Rajendra Anbhule, a lawyer from Pune, who had complained the Act was not being implemented effectively in Maharashtra because there weren’t enough full-time personnel.
In Maharashtra, the already overburdened revenue officers were given the additional responsibility of acting as protection officers.
Anbhule alleged regular officers had not been appointed by the state despite specific orders issued by the high court in July 2010.
Acting on the PIL, the division bench of justice AM Khanwilkar and justice Ashok Bhangale had earlier directed Uke to file a personal affidavit explaining the delay.
The affidavit states that government has created 37 new posts for protection officers and equal number of posts of legal advisers, of which 26 posts in either category have been filled.