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‘Women shining’ a far cry in Khaki sphere
Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

International Women’s Day today

Indian women are still not a force to reckon with. The Women’s Reservation Bill is in the deep freeze and they constitute nearly 3 per cent of the country’s police force

Chandigarh, March 7
It’s bound to take the sheen off the “Women Shining” campaign which is aggressively pursued year after year to make the Women’s Day celebrations special. Statistics from across the country reveal that khaki continues to be a male bastion, while women in the force are mere tokens.

Information collected by the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD) from different states reveal that even the likes of Kiran Bedi and Kanchan Chaudhary Bhattacharya have made little difference to national statistics as far as women in the forces are concerned. However, things are beginning to look up and a favourable mindset is getting created.

BRIGHT SPOT

Women cops in Tamil Nadu are getting commando training. There are even all-women police stations in the state. Says ADGP (Law and Order) Latika Saran: “Ours is a very unique state where women constitute 30 per cent of the total workforce in every sector. We have crossed the 10 per cent mark in the police.”

States % of women in police

Tamil Nadu 10.32
Punjab 2.19
Haryana 2.29
Himachal 4.16
Rajasthan 3.31
Kerala 6.46
Orissa 5.91
National Average 3.23

While Tamil Nadu continues to be the exception with a “high” percentage (10.32) of women in the police department, practically all other states have a dismal score.

In Punjab, only 2.19 per cent women constitute the police force. Haryana fares slightly better with 2.19 per cent, though, it’s much below the national average of 3.23. While Himachal Pradesh tops the chart in the region with 4.16 per cent women in state police department, Rajasthan is second with a score of 3.31 per cent.

In the country, Dadar and Nagar Haveli, has 10.58 percent women in the force, while the figures for Kerala and Orrisa are 6.46 and 5.91 pc, respectively. Among the worst performers are Assam and Nagaland which have merely .96 percent and .81 percent women working as cops.

Haryana DGP, Ranjeev Dalal, says the gender ratio in the force is set to change. “We’ll touch the mark of seven percent shortly following our massive recruitment drive,” he claims. If Haryana is “already on the job”, Punjab, too, is “conscious” of the need to increase the women power in the force. “We are in the process of recruiting 500 women personnel,” remarks Sanjiv Gupta, ADGP (admn). In line to be the next Karnataka DGP “if all goes well”, DG (Home Guard) Jija Hari Singh, says, “Recruitment of women was not a priority earlier. However, there is a growing emphasis on having more women police personnel. ”

DGP of BPRD Prasoon Mukherjee admits that the gender ratio in the police is skewed. “Earlier, it was suggested to increase the number of women personnel to 30 per cent which seemed a tall order. It was lowered to 10 per cent. We have forwarded the recommendations to the states which are working towards the goal,” he said.

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