Even after the police issued strict instructions to companies regarding security of women working the graveyard shifts, no one seems to be heeding the orders.
The police, after imposing Section 144 in view of security of women working the graveyard shifts, have booked around 14 different companies, including BPOs, for flouting orders.
In Sunday's case, a drunken man in Dhaula Kuan area in south Delhi allegedly molested a 25-year-old woman who works at the IGI Airport.
Even though the police have issued strict instructions, the cab driver picked up the woman from Satya Niketan bus stand. The south Delhi Police have booked the company for disobedience to order duly promulgated by a public servant.
What is Section 144?
Section 144 is a prohibitive order that gives the Delhi Police the power to curtail any sort of activity that they believe might create problems. Under it the police have ordered BPOs, corporate and media houses to ensure safety of women under a few points. The companies who do not follow the norms are liable to be booked under Section 188 of the IPC. "But the problem is that the law is too weak as the maximum punishment is for a month or a mere fine of Rs200. The BPOs also claim that the mistake was on the part of the cab driver and not the company. So in the end it is just the cabbie who gets punished and not the company," said a senior police officer.
The police are now banking on amendments in Delhi Police Act to ensure that all companies that employ women to work the graveyard shifts follow all the rules. "There are amendments in the Delhi Police Act that will ensure that security of women in transit on night shifts is given utmost importance. Once amendments are in place, any company found flouting the rules will be booked under sections in the act," said BK Gupta, Delhi Police Commissioner.
The government has also taken notice of the situation. "If the Delhi police want stringent laws to be formed it can come up with the proposal. We will be more than willing to frame the draft law and send it to the central government. Under the Shops and Establishment Act also the police are mandated to act against organisations that don't provide security to women employee working beyond 7pm," said Sheila Dikshit, Delhi chief minister.