MARG-JAGORI project supported by UN Women and UN Habitat has conducted a research study on the ‘role of police helpline in providing safety to the women at public places’. The study started from 1st August 2012 and ended on 30th November 2012. During this period, the study has closely observed the functioning of the Police Helpline in Delhi. The purpose of the study is to specifically understand women’s experience at public spaces regarding safety and response system of police helplines and how police helplines can be strengthened to facilitate relief and provide support.
This study endeavored to root out the problems faced by the women at public places with the help of desk review, Focused Group Discussions (FGDs) with most vulnerable groups like homeless, slum women, disable women, Expatriates, , North east women, Domestic workers, Sex workers in Delhi. It was horrible finding that they don’t want to call PCR because they believe that its response is ineffective and PCR people themselves belong to police so how can they help them! Secondly, it was found that maximum women try to solve security issues by adopting the conservatives. There is always a fear among these women to keep their four eyes open, two in front and two at the back. There are many stories which prove that their existence in society is at stake especially for those who are always on public places.
The Police Helpline mechanism has been dealt in details, how it works, what is the structure of Police Helpline, problems faced by the women end user, call takers, PCR Vans etc. 1091 as well as 100 Police helpline call takers, PCR Van officials, SHOs were interviewed to know the realities of the Police helpline services. This research also defines the criteria of a standard helpline service. To make research more purposive, we also chose the best helpline to provide the best practices which could be followed by the Delhi Police helpline. It concludes with some valuable recommendations on Police helplines. Overall, this study brings unique literature on helpline and also analyzes the Police helpline in the light of women safety at public places.