Many citizens are ready to be proactive when it comes to helping make the city a safer place for children.
At least 37% of the more than 10,000 people surveyed across various age groups by non-profit group Pratham said they would be more proactive and help and inform the police as well as take action to prevent such crimes.
Another 20% Mumbaiites said they would be more alert and careful and would help others in distress, while 15% said they would help by spreading awareness on child protection and safety.
“The respondents are not just talking about government taking action, but also about what we should be doing as citizens,” said Farida Lambay, co-founder and trustee of Pratham. “The mandate is going to the people.”
In response to the question about what could be done to make the city safe, respondents pointed to several possibilities.
Most (32%) said the police and the government should be more alert and proactive in dealing with child-related crimes, while the other suggestions included stricter punishment and quick disposal of cases (14%), stricter laws in place (11%), and increased community participation and awareness regarding safety of children (16%).
About 20% offered a variety of other suggestions such as greater media sensitivity in dealing with cases related to children and control on violence and other adult content on TV, movies etc, increased police presence in public transport, security guards in schools, introduction of child helplines in schools and reserved seats for children in public transport.
“We are doing several things and trying to make the city safer for children. We have several schemes in place,” said Varsha Gaikwad, minister for women and child development.