15 “Special Cells” Set Up To Help Inter-Caste Couples: Delhi Police To Court

15 “Special Cells” Set Up To Help Inter-Caste Couples: Delhi Police To Court

Inter-caste married victims can call helpline number ‘181’ for any help, police said. (Representational)

New Delhi:

Delhi Police has told the Delhi High Court that there are 15 “district special cells” for protecting inter-caste married couples and any victim can call the women helpline number ‘181’ for assistance in event of distress.

The Delhi Police explained that once a call is received, details are shared with the DCP concerned and the couple concerned is moved to a “safe house” after following the due procedure.

Details pertaining to these cells will be publicised on social media as well as the Delhi Police website, it stated.

The police’s submission came on a status report filed on petitions by NGO Dhanak by Humanity, represented by lawyer Utkarsh Singh, concerning the creation of special cells in the city in terms of a Supreme Court order asking the state governments to create special cells to receive complaints of harassment of and threat to couples of inter-caste marriages.

The police, in its status report, said that pursuant to the directive, 15 special cells were constituted with the respective DCPs as the coordinating officers and also comprised a District Social Welfare Officer and a District Women & Child Development Officer.

It said that the special cells, which provide the facilities of “lodging bedding meals, counselling to the couple through probation officer and medical facility” in terms of the SOP issued by the Delhi government, have dealt with 17 inter-caste couples.

“It is submitted that 15 District Special Cells were constituted by GNCT vide order dated August 28, 2020, in pursuance to Judgement of Hon’ble Supreme Court dated March 27, 2018. District Special Cell comprises of respective DCP as coordinating officer and District Social Welfare Officer and District Women & Child Development Officer as Members,” the report said.

“Regarding methodology, the victim can call at women helpline number i.e. 181. The details of calls have to be shared with the concerned DCP heading this special cell. A complaint (is) received and after enquiry, the requirement of the safe house will be conveyed to District Magistrate and the couples be safely moved to the safe house,” it added.

The report also informed that the relevant SOP and list of district special cells are uploaded on the website of the Department of Social Welfare, Delhi government as well.

In August, Justice Jasmeet Singh asked Delhi Police to file a detailed status report indicating the facilities/services provided by the special cells as well as their stand on giving publicity to them so that citizens and couples of inter-caste marriages are aware of their existence.

The court had then also said that there was also no clarity on the protection given by these cells as well as the “methodology” to approach them.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)