Some time ago we had the UK scheme called ‘Ask For Angela’ where women at bars and restaurants could ask for an ‘Angela’. This name is essentially a code for the staff at the establishment that the woman is not feeling safe with her companion and wants to leave.
The scheme allowed women to get away from an unsafe environment without outright alerting the other person, who could potentially hold them back from escaping.
The staff in such a situation would then escort the person out from the bar and get them into a taxi.
Something similar has happened in Delhi also where unfortunately we have seen a big increase in domestic abuse cases.
The lockdown due to coronavirus has only further added to it, forcing women and men to stay inside their homes without any means of escape.
Now certain authorities in Delhi have chosen very common and essential businesses, turning them into a safe zone for women.
Report Domestic Abuse At Mother Dairy
The Delhi State Legal Services Authority (DSLSA) has selected places and shops like the chemist shops and Mother Dairy outlets to serve as a centre where women can easily report domestic abuse.
Because these are considered essential services, they have remained open even during the COVID-19 lockdown, thus allowing them to operate easily.
This move came after the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) revealed how Delhi till mid-May had the third-highest number of domestic violence cases in the whole of India.
Other reports have said that domestic abuse cases in Delhi during the lockdown are nearly touching a good 100, which is extremely worrisome.
Mother Dairy booths and local chemist shops will help the person to properly report any domestic abuse they might be suffering from.
Women can report domestic abuse at their local Mother Dairy or chemist shop and they will help to provide them with the necessary helpline number to contact.
Regarding this initiative, DSLSA member secretary Kanwal Jeet Arora said that, “In the pre-lockdown period, the victims would come to us to report. But now, we are trying to reach out to them at their doorstep. Once we receive a complaint or a call on our helpline, our counsellors speak to both the victim and the abuser. But if the abuser is not willing to speak or is evasive, we depute a lawyer who files a petition in court on behalf of the victim.”
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The fact that a Mother Dairy booth or a chemist shop is present in practically every locality and society helps to make them the ideal centre for such a thing.
Also, a woman going to either of the places will not arouse any suspicion in her household.
DSLSA has also partnered up with Anganwadi and ASHA workers to help domestic abuse victims to report against their abusers.
There is even an app called ‘Vidhi Sewa’ that is supposed to give free legal aid to domestic violence victims.
Arora reportedly was quoted by TOI saying that, “Once the app is downloaded, the woman can register her details and write to us about the alleged abuse or violence. We will reach out to her through telecounselling.”
A WhatsApp number- 9667992802 and toll-free helpline number 1516 are also available for such victims.
The victims can send a SMS or give a missed call to these numbers and would be contacted and given the legal aid that they require.
Image Credits: Google Images
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This post is tagged under: Mother Dairy Booth, mother Dairy, mother dairy domestic abuse, lockdown, lockdown delhi, coronavirus lockdown, lockdown domestic abuse