SRINAGAR, OCTOBER 10– Minister of State for Health and Social Welfare, Asiea Naqash, Saturday said that government has directed police and civil administration to speed up the investigation in all female burning cases on priority basis.
Speaking at Kashmir Student Parliament, held here at SKICC, the Minister said that Chief Minister, Mufti Muhammad Sayeed, has directed the Director General of Police to investigate such cases on fast-track basis, especially the Khanyar woman’s case, who succumbed to burn injuries sustained by her in what appears to be the worst ever case of violence against women in the state.
She said that the government was contemplating to establish a shelter-home for such victims.
“At these homes, besides protection, they can be provided with medical care and legal assistance so that the perpetrators of violence against them are brought to justice,” she said.
The minister said that the gender based violence has come as a serious issue that transcends geography, class, culture, age, race and religion to affect every community.
“Crimes and violence against women is also on the rise in our state. The government is setting up One-Stop Crisis Centre at Srinagar, to provide integrated support and timely assistance under one roof to women affected by violence, both in private and public spaces,” she said.
The minister assured that the Centre will provide all kinds of aid to women in distress including medical help, counselling, legal and police assistance.
Naqash said that the government was also establishing a dedicated Women Helpline 181 in the state. The Helpline is intended to provide 24 hours immediate and emergency response to women affected by violence through referral (by linking with appropriate authority such as police, One Stop Centre, Hospital etc.) through this single uniform number 181.
In order to curb the deteriorating sex ratio in the state, Naqash said that the government is launching a new scheme “Ladli Beti” to provide incentives to female children born on or after April 1st, 2015 in families with annual income of Rs.75,000 or less. Under the scheme, the government will deposit Rs. 1000 per month in the bank account of the new born girl child till she attains 14 years of age and on maturity at the age of 21 years; she will draw around Rs.6.25 lakh. This scheme is unique and applicable in J&K State only.
The scheme will be launched in six districts of the state viz., Budgam, Pulwama, Anantnag, Jammu, Samba and Kathua in the first phase and later implemented in other districts from the next year.
Naqash wished the students who organised Youth Parliament, could turn into agents of change in the society.