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One-stop centre in Gurgaon lacks facilities and infrastructure

The small dirty, dingy room with two beds has no facilities and does not have an attached toilet or a small kitchen, as required under the guidelines drawn.

gurgaon Updated: Mar 21, 2018 23:51 IST
Leena Dhankhar
Leena Dhankhar
Hindustan Times
One-stop centres(OSCs),sexual abuse,victims of violence
The one-stop centre, which comes under the women and child development (WCD) department, is run from a dressing room in Civil Hospital Gurgaon. (Sanjeev Verma/HT PHOTO)

The one-stop centre (OSC), meant to help women victims of violence, being run from the Civil Hospital in Gurgaon is devoid of any facility for the distressed, as required under the guidelines drawn by the Central government. The centre does not even have an administrator.

The dismal state of affairs came to light after a 13-year-old minor rape victim, who was brought to the Civil Hospital, was left unattended for more than 12 hours and was not even given first-aid. The child was attended to, and later referred to the Safdarjung hospital, after officials from the child welfare committee (CWC) reached the hospital to meet the victim, as per procedure.

“Whenever we send victims to OSC, they are not attended to properly. We have been receiving complaints from the police officials and victims. They are not even provided proper food and first aid,” CWC chairperson Shakuntala Dhull said, adding that when she visited the OSC on March 13, there was no facility for the victims and no counsellor or attendant was present.

The OSC comes under the women and child development (WCD) department.

At the Civil Hospital, though the OSC office itself is on the ground floor, the room for distressed women is on the first floor, and does not have a separate access as stipulated in the guidelines. In fact, the dressing room which is being used as OSC, does not even have a board identifying it.

The small dirty, dingy room with two beds has no facilities and does not have an attached toilet or a small kitchen, as per the guidelines.

According to sources, a bill was cleared by WCD in March for buying furniture and other facilities, but nothing was available at the centre.

Jyoti Bainda, chairperson of the Haryana state commission for protection of child rights, said, “The department has sanctioned the funds for the OSC and if the items bought by the programme officer is not at the centre, I will mark inquiry for the same. I will personally visit the OSC and we will not accept any negligence.”

The centre in Gurgaon not only lacks infrastructure but is also neglected by the authorities concerned, said CWC officials.

In the OSC at the hospital, two sheets of paper display the name and number given of the district nodal officer–Meena Kumari. When contacted for comment, Kumari said, “I am not a nodal officer and I have no responsibility related to the OSC. Please visit the spot and speak to the concerned person.” When apprised that her number is displayed at the OSC, Kumari said that it was wrongly displayed.

Sangeeta Sharma, who is a counsellor at the centre, said, “The one-stop centre is being run under the Sakhi Programme and the space used by them presently is a temporary set up, which the hospital has provided as the WCD does not have space. We provide first aid and legal aid to the victims here”.

District programme officer Sunita Sharma, who has been appointed to oversee the functioning of the OSC, could not be contacted despite repeated attempts.

What is a one-stop centre?

  • The Central government had proposed the establishment of One-Stop Centres after the gangrape and murder of a 23-year-old woman in Delhi on December 16, 2012, to provide integrated support and assistance to victims under one roof
  • The facilities at or near hospitals are intended to would provide women who have faced violence a temporary shelter, guide them with the procedure of registering complaints and provide them necessary medical, legal and psychological assistance
  • The violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic and /or psychological
  • The OSC will support all women including minor girls
  • For girls below 18 years of age, institutions and authorities established under JJ Act, 2000, and the POCSO Act, 2012, will be linked with the OSC
  • Each centre must have a separate access and have at least 5 rooms and carpet area of 132 sq.m. within a hospital or medical facility which may be prominently visible and easily accessible
  • Each centre must have a centre administrator who would be the first point of contact, a case workers, police facilitation officer, para legal personnel or lawyer, para medical personnel, counselor, IT staffer, multi-
    purpose helper and guard
  • The Centre should be open 24 hours with referral services
  • To provide referral services, lists of a hospital, police stations, lawyers, counsellors should be available at the OSC
  • These centres have been set up using money from the Nirbhaya Fund, set up in 2013.

First Published: Mar 21, 2018 23:51 IST