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Umbrella Scheme on Safety of Women, Provisions and Key Projects

Context: The Union Cabinet approved the Home Ministry’s proposal for the continuation of the implementation of the “Safety of Women” umbrella scheme.

Umbrella Scheme for Safety of Women

In a significant move aimed at bolstering the safety and security of women across the nation, the Indian government has given the green light to the continuation of the Umbrella Scheme on ‘Safety of Women.’

Initiative Overview

The initiative, valued at a staggering ₹1,179.72 crore, is slated to span the period from 2021-22 to 2025-26, highlighting the government’s unwavering commitment to addressing the pressing issue of women’s safety.

Government Endorsement

The decision was endorsed by the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, underscoring the pivotal role of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in spearheading efforts to ensure the well-being and protection of women in society.

Financial Allocation

Out of the total project outlay, the MHA will contribute ₹885.49 crore from its own budget, with an additional ₹294.23 crore sourced from the Nirbhaya Fund—a dedicated initiative established in the aftermath of the heinous 2012 Delhi gang-rape case, aimed at enhancing safety measures for women.

Multifaceted Approach to Women’s Safety

Ensuring the safety of women is a multifaceted endeavor that hinges on various factors, including stringent legal provisions, efficient justice delivery mechanisms, and robust institutional support frameworks.

Legal Reforms

The government’s proactive stance in fortifying deterrence against crimes targeting women is exemplified by amendments to key legislations such as the Indian Penal Code, Criminal Procedure Code, and Indian Evidence Act.

Provisions under the Umbrella Scheme for “Safety of Women”

  • 112 Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) 2.0;
  • Upgradation of Central Forensic Sciences laboratories, including setting up of National Forensic Data Centre;
  • Strengthening of DNA Analysis, Cyber Forensic capacities in State Forensic Science Laboratories (FSLs);
  • Cyber Crime Prevention against Women and Children;
  • Capacity building and training of investigators and prosecutors in handling sexual assault cases against women and children; and
  • Women Help Desk & Anti-human Trafficking Units.

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Key Projects Of Initiative

Under the ambit of the Umbrella Scheme for “Safety of Women,” the government has proposed to continue several key projects, including:

  1. 112 Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) 2.0: A vital emergency helpline system aimed at providing prompt assistance to women in distress.
  2. Upgradation of Central Forensic Sciences Laboratories: This includes the establishment of a National Forensic Data Centre, which will play a crucial role in forensic analysis and data management.
  3. Strengthening of DNA Analysis and Cyber Forensic Capacities: Efforts will be made to bolster capabilities in state forensic science laboratories, particularly in the realms of DNA analysis and cyber forensics, to enhance investigative processes.
  4. Cyber Crime Prevention against Women and Children: Recognizing the growing threat posed by cybercrimes, especially those targeting vulnerable groups like women and children, proactive measures will be taken to prevent and combat such offenses.
  5. Capacity Building and Training Programs: Specialized training programs will be conducted for investigators and prosecutors to equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to handle cases of sexual assault against women and children effectively.
  6. Women Help Desks & Anti-Human Trafficking Units: These initiatives aim to establish dedicated help desks and units to provide assistance to women in need and combat the scourge of human trafficking, which disproportionately affects women and girls.

The government’s unwavering resolve to prioritize women’s safety underscores its commitment to fostering an environment where women can live and thrive without fear or apprehension. By continuing to invest in comprehensive strategies and initiatives, the government aims to create a society where every woman feels secure and empowered to realize her full potential.

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Umbrella Scheme on Safety of Women FAQs

What are the government initiatives for women safety?

The Government has sanctioned Rs. 200 crore to States and Union Territories to set up Women Help Desks (WHDs) in police stations, and to set up/ strengthen Anti Human Trafficking Units (AHTU)s in all districts of the country as also on vulnerable borders.

What are the objectives of umbrella scheme?

The prime objective of the Ministry is to address gaps in State action for women and children and to promote inter-ministerial and inter- sectoral convergence to create gender equitable and child centred legislation, policies and programmes.

How many umbrella schemes are there?

3 Umbrella schemes- “Mission Shakti, Mission Poshan 2.0, and Mission Vatsalya” – 3 Umbrella schemes of Ministry of WCD.

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