Finally, women's cause gets a push
Soon, every necessary support - from medical to legal - would be available to rape victims from crisis centres that the government plans to set up in district hospitals across India.
Named 'One Stop Crisis Centre', the women and child development (WCD) ministry is initially planning to start the unit in 100 districts from where maximum incidents of crime against women are reported.
The centre will function from the respective district hospital in each of these districts and will provide all kind of support, including registering complaints from the victims of rape/ assault or other crime against women.
"We will compile the list of 100 districts from the National Crime Records Bureau data. Apart from medical and legal aid, the centre would provide counselling and whatever support required to women victims," said Prem Narain, WCD secretary.
At the moment, in the absence of a single point redressal system for heinous crime against women, the victims face a harrowing time in getting their complaints registered and do not mange to get the medical and legal aid on time.
Ministry officials said that the one stop crisis centre is part of the new Empowerment and Protection of Women scheme that the ministry plans to launch from April 1.
"We will require Rs. 3500 crore to fund the scheme during the 12th Plan period (2012-17)," said a ministry official.
Apart from setting up the crisis centre, awareness campaigns - to prevent atrocities against women-will also be launched.
"States would also have to ensure that in case the victim is a minor, she does not face any harassment at school," said an official.