Civic body will use 425 crore to make Chennai safer for women

The city civic body plans to use the Rs 425 crore sanctioned by the Centre under the Nirbhaya Fund to install surveillance cameras and introduce new measures to make Chennai a safer city for women and children.
Civic body will use 425 crore to make Chennai safer for women
Illustration: Saai


“The central government will release 60 per cent of the amount while the state government is supposed to release the rest,” said a senior official from the Chennai Corporation. “The Greater Chennai Municipal Corporation, MTC and the police will coordinate with each other in implementing this project,” he added.
The funds will be used to install 35,200 CCTV cameras in all the buses across various transport corporations and set up emergency call boxes in crime prone spots across the city, among other initiatives.
The emergency call boxes will constitute a box attached to presumably a lamppost. The box will have a camera fixed on to it along with a button that will alert the police immediately. Explaining how the initiative will help women, the official said, “If women feel threatened or harassed on the road, they can press the emergency call button in the box to alert police. 
Pressing the button will also stream a live video of the locality to the police control room so that officers can assess the situation and send a team accordingly.” The boxes can also act as a public announcement system, he added.
The official, however, did not divulge further details of the initiative as it is still in its nascent stage. “We are working with the police to shortlist the most crime prone areas in the city so that the emergency boxes can be installed there. More details on the boxes will be announced once the proposals are finalised,” the senior corporation official said.
The civic body is also planning to arm city buses with emergency help buttons and CCTV cameras. A senior MTC official said, “A centralised control room will be set up and a customer complaint team will be set up to monitor the camera feeds round the clock.”
The money sanctioned from the Nirbhaya Fund will also be used to bring street lights under remote monitoring, said an official from the corporation.  “Seven thousand street lights in T Nagar and the surrounding area will be brought under remote monitoring. Also, women police patrol teams will be constituted, and new patrol vehicles will be provided to the patrol teams,” the official said.
RS 2,000 crore reserved
The central government had earmarked Rs 2,000 crore for women safety programmes in New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Lucknow for three years. 
Initiatives under Nirbhaya Fund
  • Emergency call boxes in crime zones
  • Surveillance cameras in public places
  • Security in public transport
  • Capacity building and awareness programs
  • Emergency helpline and mobile applications
  • Women police patrol
  • Counselling

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