This Article is From May 18, 2013

Gujarat police launches mobile phone helpline for women

Ahmedabad: Gujarat police on Friday launched its most ambitious emergency response system - 'Help Emergency Assistance Rescue Terminal' (HEART) - a helpline which will enable women to seek immediate help of police through mobile phones in times of emergency.

"Through this one step solution system our aim is to reduce the response time of the police to provide help to those women or girls who are in distress," Ahmedabad Joint Police Commissioner (headquarters) Sanjay Srivastav told reporters in Ahmedabad today.

HEART has been assigned a toll free number - 1091 on which, any woman, who urgently needs police assistance, can call either from their mobile or a landline and within minutes police assistance will reach her.

"The victim does not need to speak. Once it presses the speed dial key or call the toll free number, HEART immediately searches the location and sends it to the nearest police mobile van, which will rush to the spot in no time," said Ruzan Khambatta, with whose company WizzoTech, the state government has tied up for the project.

"Any girl or woman, who feels threatened, does not even require to wait for somebody to pick up the phone nor she requires to speak with anybody," she said.

Initially, the new system would be operated in Ahmedabad on a pilot basis, before being tried in other parts of the state.

"We will encourage maximum number of women and girls to register with HEART either through website or by filling out registration forms from any citizen help centres," said Ajay Tomar, Joint Commissioner of Police (Sector-1).

Registration forms will be made available in Gujarati and Hindi languages, in which anyone can put maximum ten contact numbers so that police can simultaneously send messages to those numbers and inform them, he said.

To a question, Srivastav said they were training policemen to sensitise them about gender violence and women in distress.

"We have just completed training up to police sub- inspector level and very shortly we will start training police inspectors, DCPs and higher officers," he said.