Two weeks after it was launched, Delhi Police’s Himmat — an emergency app for women — has registered about 900 SOS alerts, some from as far as Greece and Dubai, although all of them have been made to test the app.
The Android app was launched by Delhi Police on January 1 to make women feel secure in a city notorious for crimes against women.
A user has to register her details with the police website to be able to use the app that is integrated with the police’s emergency response system. Himmat has received good response with more than 14,000 downloads already recorded. However, women are using it only to test its effectiveness as police have found.
“When we call back, women who raised the alert say they were only testing if the app worked well and whether their details are correctly registered with the police,” says constable Anita Yadav, who attends to such SOS messages in the police control room. “Many women who raise the alert do not take our call and then we have to call their parents.” Problem arises when neither the woman nor her parents take the call.
“In some cases, we have dispatched PCR vans to locate a woman who raised an alert but did not take our call. In every case, we were told they were just testing the app. But we don’t mind, as it is a learning phase both for us and the users,” says Delhi Police special commissioner (operations) Sundari Nanda.