Govt to launch national helpline against atrocities on SCs/STs
With an objective to build informed awareness about the provisions of the law that are aimed at ending discrimination and provide protection to Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs), the government will launch a National Helpline Against Atrocities (NHAA) on Monday.
The helpline will be launched by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment with an aim to ensure proper implementation of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) (PoA) Act, 1989 which was enacted with a view to, inter-alia, preventing atrocities on members of SCs and STs.
The ministry said that the NHAA will be available round the clock on toll-free number 14566 across the country. It can be accessed by making a voice call /VOIP either from a mobile or landline number of any telecom operator across the country.
This service will be available in Hindi, English and regional language of the State/UTs. Its mobile application will also be available. The system will ensure that every complaint is registered as an FIR, relief is provided, all registered complaints are investigated and all chargesheets filed are prosecuted in the Courts for decision -- all within the given timelines in the Act.
Available as a web based self-service portal also, the NHAA will generate awareness about the Protection of Civil Right (PCR) Act, 1955 and its rules as well.
"A docket number shall be given for each complaint received from Victim/Complainant/NGOs regarding non-compliance of the POA Act, 1989 and the PCR Act, 1955. The status of the grievance can be tracked by complainant/NGOs online.
"Any inquiry shall be replied by IVR or operators in Hindi, English and regional languages. This helpline will adopt the concept of single point of contact and have a proper feedback system," the ministry added.