No 1 in crime against women, UP used just 3.29% of Nirbhaya fundUpdated: Dec 03, 2019 22:51 IST
Even as Uttar Pradesh tops the list in crime against woman, according to the recent National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) data, the state has been reluctant in utilising the Nirbhaya fund, which is allocated for ensuring women’s safety.
Uttar Pradesh has utilised less than 4% of the fund allocated to it, according to information provided in parliament recently by Smriti Irani, union minister of women and child development.
The state was allocated ₹1,193.98 million under the fund of which only ₹39.3 million has been utilised. The utilized amount is just 3.29% of the allocated fund.
Nirbhaya fund was announced in the 2013 Union budget following the of brutal rape and murder of Delhi resident. The fund was meant to be utilised for projects that should have a direct impact on the safety and security of women.
Of the total fund used in the state, a large part was utilised by Woman Power Line (WPL) for strengthening infrastructure to make the city safer for women.
Of the ₹23.7 million allocated for women helpline scheme, the state has managed to spend over ₹14.6 million, which is around 61.65 % of the fund.
Sometime back, Anju Gupta, additional director general (ADG) Woman Power Line had said that the state had received an instalment of Rs 975.8 million. This fund, according to her, will be utilised in installing CCTV cameras, creating a database and a mobile application for women’s safety.
Uttar Pradesh also lags in implementation of ‘One Stop Centre (OSC) Scheme, which was also to be undertaken with the Nirbhaya fund.
The state has only managed to utilise ₹54 million (13.20%) of the total ₹408.8 allocated for the scheme.
The OSC scheme was rolled out in 2017 to build centres where women, who are victims of physical, sexual, emotional, psychological and economic abuse, irrespective of age, could be facilitated with support and redressal. Aggrieved women facing violence due to attempted sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, trafficking, honour related crimes, acid attacks could be provided with specialized services under this scheme.
A portion of the fund was also meant to be utilised for improving infrastructure of transport and making it more woman-friendly. For this a total of ₹402 million was allocated. The state has managed to spend ₹311 million (77.30%) of the fund.
Commenting on the poor utilisation of the funds, additional chief secretary (home) Awnish Awasthi said, “The Nirbhaya fund could not be utilised optimally because several dedicated projects for women safety were not finalised. Now around nine of our projects, including the safe city project, are in the pipeline that will use the Nirbhaya fund.”
Madhu Garg, state president of All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), questioned the political will of the state government for not utilising the Nirbhaya fund. “The government lacks a strong political will towards ensuring safety and security of women in the state. This primarily is the reason why the Nirbhaya fund is not being optimally used.”
Crime against women
(NCRB report 2017)
Total cases registered across India: 3.59 lakh
In Uttar Pradesh: 56,011 (15.56%)