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Use `181` code as women helpline number: Sibal

Last Updated: Friday, January 25, 2013 - 23:33

New Delhi: Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal has asked state chief ministers to consider starting a emergency help-line service exclusively for women on code `181`.

"Keeping in view the increased frequency of unfortunate instances of offences and violence against women, the Government of National Capital Territory is using the help-line service exclusively for women in distress and I urge you to consider starting a similar help-line service on code `181` in your state," Sibal said in the letter.

The communication has been sent to all Chief Ministers, a government official said.

Earlier, Sibal had said the government would give single emergency number 181 to women across the country.

Amid nationwide uproar over brutal gang-rape of a 23-year old paramedic student, the Telecom Ministry released a three-digit number, 167, for women helpline in Delhi 181 but the number, however, was changed to 181 as the Ministry felt that it would be easier to recollect.

Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had requested to allot a three-digit phone number for helping women in distress.
A central government agency is also running trials to instantly track the location of the caller on emergency numbers to help narrow down the time taken by security personnel to reach the spot even if the call is incomplete.

The Telecom Minister has also asked Chief Ministers to consider using 181 as emergency helpline number besides the existing police help-line, which works on a different code.
The Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEITY), under Sibal, is also working on women safety devices below price of Rs 1,000. The proposed electronic device will have high-tech features like sending alerts to emergency numbers with help of a voice command only.

DEITY has set a target of six months to come up with prototype of this safety device in six months.


First Published: Friday, January 25, 2013 - 23:33
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