Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Chandigarh (UT). Delhi, Madhya Pradesh,
Gujarat, Kerala, Uttarakhand, Mizoram. Jharkhand, Bihar, Punjab, Maharashtra, Odhisa, Uttar
Pradesh, Meghalaya, Haryana, Nagaland, West Bengal, Sikkim and Meghalaya.
Panic Button on Mobile Phones
To provide emergency response to women in distress, MWCD had taken up the installation
of physical panic button on mobile phones. Based on extensive stakeholder consultations
initiated by the Ministry the ‘Panic Button and Global Positioning System in Mobile Phone
Handsets Rules, 2016’ have been notified by the Department of Telecommunications. Under
these rules, all new feature phones will have the facility of panic button configured to the
numeric key 5 or 9 and all smart phones will have it configured to three times short pressing of
the on-off button. Further, all new mobile phones will be required to have the facility of
identifying the location through satellite based OPS. An Emergency Response Support System
(ERSS) is also being set up under Nirbhaya Fund in collaboration with MHA, which will
integrate all emergency numbers to 112 with state-of-art technology to respond to distress signals
sent from panic button.
Mahila Police Volunteers
The broad mandate of Mahila Police Volunteers (MPVs) is to report to authorities/police the
incidences of violence against women such as domestic violence, child marriage, dowry
harassment and violence faced by women in public spaces. Haryana has become the first state to
operationalise the Mahila Police Volunteers scheme. It was launched jointly by the WCD
Ministry and Haryana government in 2016 for the districts of Karnal and Mahendragarh in the
state. Other states are expected to follow the same soon.
Reservation for Women in Police Force
The WCD Ministry has been working along with the Ministry of Home Affairs to improve
overall police responsiveness to gender sensitive cases and to bring visibility to more women and
strengthen gender sensitivity in police force. An advisory has been issued to all state
governments to increase representation of women in police to 33 per cent of the total strength.
As a result, reservation has been extended in 14 states/union territories. So far 8 states viz.,
Bihar, Gujarat, Odisha, Nagaland, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and 6 UTs
namely Chandigarh, Daman and Diu, Lakhadweep and Dadra and Nagar Haveli, NCT Delhi,
Puducherry have aleady extended such reservation.
Inclusion of Acid Attack as Disability
Taking note of the long lasting damage or disfigurement on the life of a person attacked
with acid as well as constant medical attention, MWCD requested Ministry of Social Justice and
Empowerment to include acid attack induced damage or disfigurement within the list of specified
disabilities. The recently enacted Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 notified in 2016,
included acid attack as a kind of disability. Acid attack victims can now avail disability benefits.
Guidelines for Matrimonial Websites
In view of the increasing number of crimes committed against women on the account of
information shared in matrimonial websites, it was decided to look into the issue and put in place
a regulatory framework in order to check this misuse. The Ministry has already carried out