Pune: In many cases of sexual abuse against children culprits are known to the victim. Hence, residents of Wanowrie have decided to take proactive steps to safeguard their children.
In a first-of-its-kind step, they have started collecting data of people working in nearby shops, as a precautionary measure. Over 200 residents of Kumar Prasanna Co-operative Housing Society have joined hands to provide extra shield to their children.
Speaking about the initiative, Sudhir Solanki, chairman of the society said, “We have been reading about such cases, where most of the time the culprits are salesmen or employees of nearby grocery shops, vegetable vendors.”
Realising that children from their society can also face similar situations, Sandip Salunke who is in-charge of security, came up with idea of maintaining a record of nearby shopkeepers.”
Speaking to dna, Salunke said, “We have collected photographs of workers working in nearby shops along with their PAN card details and residence proof. In addition to that, we have taken an undertaking from all shopkeepers, that if any of their workers is found guilty, they will be held responsible. We are also planning to install CCTV cameras inside the lifts and also at our society’s premises as a precautionary measure.”
That aside, children of the society are also being given lessons on good and bad touch.
Lawyer Preeti Shah (38), one of the residents of the same society said, “Its a good initiative taken by our society. We, as a citizen, also need to be vigilant as every time we cannot blame the police and shop-keepers for such incidents.”
The police have welcomed the step taken by the residents. Deputy Commissioner of police (Zone IV) Manoj Patil said, “It’s a good initiative taken by the society members, and other societies should also follow it. In such cases, the culprit manages to escape from the area, and the shopkeepers do not have any record.”
Sigh of relief
I am running my store for more than ten years in the area, but personally, I never maintained any records of those working in my store. When the society members approached me, I immediately gave all the details along with undertaking.
Ashok Kumar, owner of Tip-Top super market
More than 15 children come to my house for tuitions. Their security is my responsibility. This initiative will lessen surely my burden.
Jayashree Sonawane, tutor
When my children play in the area, I sit in the garden to keep a watch. Now, I will be less scared as the society has taken up this initiative.
Rashmi Maheshwari, HR professional
This will not only help in curbing child abuse, but it will also help reduce other criminal activities.
Ketaki Salunke, PR professional