Tuesday, May 18

With 400 arrests, women’s squad scores a big win against harassers, snatchers & stalkers

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The special all-women patrol — Winners — that has played a pivotal role since 2018 in curbing crimes against women on Kolkata streets has arrested close to 400 people who harassed women. Following their example, two police divisions — the eastern suburban and south suburban — have now introduced special drives to combat such crimes at specific locations in the city. Police said, of all the arrests made by the Winners, 362 were related to making public spaces safe for women. Joint CP (crime) Murlidhar Sharma shared a post on Twitter, congratulating the team over the weekend.
“Initially, we had asked two women cops to patrol the streets of Ultadanga. Both were in plain clothes with their male colleagues providing back up. The response was phenomenal and we extended drive to Narkeldanga, Beliaghata and Entally. Now this campaign will become a regular evening feature across important police stations in the eastern suburban division,” said DC (ESD) Ajoy Prasad.

Police sources said crimes against women tackled by the Winners have been varied. A few of the accused were trying to obtain the phone numbers of the women and persisting for links to their Facebook accounts when cops nabbed the accused. Several bikes were flagged down and checked. Some of the accused were arrested based on random checks at malls, offices and parks — areas which are seen as such criminals’ primary zone of operation. Police are investigating CCTV footage from these areas to develop a water-tight case against each of these accused.

Officers said initially, the Winners squad are concentrating on south and south suburban Kolkata, but they will soon expand their zones of operation with additional personnel joining the team. “We are expecting to efficiently use them across the city. The raids will be kept secret till the last moment and we will be scaling up operations as we head towards Valentine’s Day,” said an officer.

Commissioner Anuj Sharma had sent out a tweet last month asking citizens to report all incidents of women in distress by dialling 100. Cops said all efforts were being made to popularize the concept among Kolkatans and lately, #dial100 has been trending on Twitter.

Police have also asked all citizens to forward to the cops anything they find objectionable on the internet. “It is important that we stop trolling. It is harassment on the internet. Our social media team has been asked to respond to all complaints,” said an officer.

 

Source: Times of India

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