Social Welfare and Cooperation Minister Nemcha Kipgen today launched a 24/7 toll free helpline number ‘181’ for distressed women facing violence in public or private spheres of life.
The function was held at Kuranga Nayani Hall. D.C. office Complex, Imphal West and jointly organised by Manipur State Commission for Women (MSCW) and Department of Social Welfare, Manipur under the sponsorship of Ministry of Women & Child Development, Government of India.
Speaking on the occasion as a Chief Guest, Nemcha said, “The Women Helpline is a gift to the women folk of the state to fight against any form of violence against women. A toll free 24/7 telecom services will provide assistance to women affected by violence, seeking support and information will be disseminated regarding various women empowerment schemes and programmes related to women empowerment and protection.”
Through the helpline, women from any part of the state will receive immediate medical assistance like the PCR Van or an ambulance, police, legal aid and one stop centre for professional counselling, the Minister added.
The helpline will prevent crime against women and also to create awareness in times of need. It will facilitate quick response of various services like lodging police complaint, to provide medical, legal and counselling to women victims.
Social Welfare Minister called upon the people to cooperate and extend maximum support to operate this helpline in the fully functional manner in the interest of all the women.
At present, there are seven (7) staff engaged on daily wage/casual basic payment and there are also some staff including 1 Helpline Manager, 1 Senior Call Responder, 4 Call Responders, 1 IT Staff, 1 Multipurpose Helper. The supervisor and 3 security officials have been designated from the Imphal West Police station.
It may be mentioned that under the sponsorship of Ministry of Women & Child Development, Government of India, the Centre had launched the 181 helpline number in 2013 after the brutal gang-rape of Nirbhaya in December 2012 and asked all states to start the helpline.
Chairperson, MSCW Dr. K. Sobita Devi, Principal Secretary, Social Welfare Manipur JC Ramthanga, IAS, Director Social Welfare, Manipur. Jacintha Lazarus, IAS, DC Imphal West N. Geoffrey, IAS graced the function as President, Special Guest and Guests of Honour respectively.