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33-33-33 : Could 33% quota for women in police force by Gujarat government be a path-breaking initiative?

Thursday, 26 June 2014 - 10:37am IST | Place: Pune | Agency: dna

At a time when crime against women is on rise in several states, the recent announcement of 33% quota for women in police force by Gujarat government could be a path-breaking initiative. dna asks readers if the presence of more women in police force will help prevent crimes against women and encourage victims of rape and sexual assaults to file police complaints
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We don’t need any cosmetic change...

Gujarat governments initiative is not really path breaking but it is an opportunity for women to consider to be in a man’s job. I dont believe that the crimes against women would reduce considerably. If the police is a woman and the lawyer is a woman for a woman’s issue, it is more like ‘ it’s your issue, you deal with it.’ Women at the work place also face harassment so how will it make any change in the crimes against women. We are looking at a cosmetic change. We need a better strategy. But I also look at it as an opportunity for women to work in the mans world.
—Rama Sarode,
lawyer and human rights activist

It will make us feel safe and secure...
I think it will not be a path breaking move but it will certainly help to prevent crimes against women to an extent. Citizens or victims will feel free to approach the police at anytime and at any place which will be beneficial especially for women. It is a good decision to encourage women to join the police force which will make us feel safe. All the states should have more women joining the force to have a better approach to sensitive issues relating to women and children. It might also reduce crimes against the women police at the police stations. It also acts as a symbol of gender equality and giving more power to women in a male-dominant society.
—Gauri Gharpure,
college student

It is a welcome move and we should appreciate it...
Gujarat CM being a woman has understood the issue of rising crime against women and how more women in police force will help curtail such crimes. I was in rural areas of Nagpur and have seen how difficult it was to investigate a crime case involving women for a male police officer. However, with women police officer, the investigation becomes easier. Female victims dont feel comfortable speaking to male police officers. Women officers are better at investigating some crimes where they are in a better position to talk to the victim and understanding the case. The move taken by Gujarat government is appreciating and hope the same reservation rule is followed by other states also.
—Smita Patil,

Assistant Commissioner of Police

Women are patriarchal in nature as well...
There are certain jobs which we traditionally consider as mans job. Positive discrimination and affirmative action is still necessary to bring about gender equality. Women in our society are also conditioned in patriarchal mindset, which is why it is wrong to assume that women in police force will be sensitive to women, unless they are gender sensitized. Gender sensitive training should be part of police training and also a criteria for performance evaluation. Just having quota for women in police is not going to serve the purpose unless you gender sensitize the whole system.
—Ramesh Awasthi, Cofounder, MASUM

We need 70 per cent reservation...
India has to evolve from our archaic system of policing. Instead of having 33% reservation, there should 70% reservation for women and 30% for men. Preventive measures are important to curtail crime against women and I feel women police are in better position to do this job. In fact Maharashtra state had made 30% reservation for women in police force, way back in 1970 and was to increase the intake.
—BJ Misar, Former DGP

Women needed in more departments...
This initiative should be followed by other states.More women in police force will be very helpful in curbing crime against women and children. Women should come forward to join police force in large numbers. Not only in crime but also in law and order and other departments women can play a prominent role.
—Rajendra Sonawane,
Retired Additional Director General

They need a perspective..
It is important to have women with a proper perspective in the police force. Maharashtra government already has a quota for women in its police force.
—Kiran Moghe,
National Secretary, All India Democratic Women’s Association

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