What are the possible reasons for the increase in crimes against women in western region?
First of all, Zone 10 is only a part of the western region. Having said that, yes, crime has increased but one cannot point to a particular reason. Such crimes have been reported more in and around slum areas. A lot of women around colleges are witnessing such incidents, and we are taking measures to reduce them. I also feel that corporates in this area are making their female staff more aware and hence more cases are reported.
A few corporators and activists have said that there are not enough police personnel and the punishment is not a strong enough deterrent. Your comment?
I don't agree with that. I agree that the population has increased rapidly, but the police are doing their best to make people more aware and be alert about sexual harassment.
What kind of measures have the police adopted?
We have collaborated with mohalla committees to sensitise people by staging street plays on sexual harassment. These plays have been staged outside Tolani College, SEEPZ Industrial Park, Powai and Jogeshwari.
But, women often complain about uncooperative police behaviour…
That is not entirely true. There might be exceptions, but to address this issue we have conducted sessions with our force to sensitise them about how to handle cases of sexual harassment and how to be patient at these times.
The police formed special squads in November to counter eve-teasing and molestation, how has this squad clamped down on anti-social elements?
The special squad kept vigils outside schools and colleges and offices. Their job was to check identity proofs of men entering these premises and question suspicious elements. Clamping down on rash bikers was also a big drive since youths on bikes are often involved in eve teasing and chain snatching.