The Twitter handle of the Mumbai police, which was launched on December 28 last year and has 76,500 followers, has received 1,400 complaints in less than three months. While 50% of them were related to traffic, 200 were on women’s safety, 100 on cybercrime and 100 on emergencies.
According to the Mumbai police, their Twitter handle has been getting good response, with the number of followers rising steadily. Citizens often give leads on crime and ask questions related to policing on the Twitter account, said officers.
Ashwini Koli, assistant police inspector, web development centre, said complaints related to crimes against women are given utmost priority. The complaints received so far range from misuse of online content to sexual harassment. In several cases, they wanted to know how and where to file an FIR. There have also been queries on action taken on their complaints or the delay in taking action.
“Some women were being harassed Facebook. Some complained of obscene comments, morphed photographs being uploaded or even fake Facebook profiles,” said Koli.
“They send us private messages on Twitter informing us about online harassment and ask us how to register the case. We respond privately to them. We take their mobile numbers, answer all their queries and guide them to the cyber police station. In cases where women are in need of urgent help, we have called the police station concerned and ensured they send their men to the spot,” she said, narrating instances of how their team helped a woman from Gujarat who was being harassed by her senior or the woman from Nalasopara who had threatened suicide.