Maneka raps police for not procuring medical test kits

Maneka raps police for not procuring medical test kits

She also raised concerns over the safety of women and children at shelter homes across the country

Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Sanjay Gandhi. PTI

Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi on Thursday lashed out at all the state police departments, noting that they have not yet procured special kits, designed by her ministry to facilitate an immediate medical examination of a rape victim at the police station itself.

She also raised concerns over the safety of women and children at shelter homes across the country, asking the senior officials of the state police departments to keep an eye on such homes

“We came up with specially-designed kits recently. Every police station must have at least three such kits. But not a single state has responded to our letter and informed how many such kits were procured. Please ensure that this is done at the earliest,” she said in presence of Home Minister Rajnath Singh and other senior officials of the Home Ministry.

This came while Home ministry officials, including Singh, was holding a video conference with the senior police officials of various states after launch of a national database of sexual offenders and a web portal for people to report cyber crimes online.

Referring to the recent case of rape at a shelter home in Bihar, she said that there was need to keep an eye on the activities of all children homes.

"20% to 30 % of sexual assaults take place in shelter homes. In Muzaffarpur in Bihar, the head of a shelter home allegedly sexually assaulted several children, but he was not arrested immediately. There was a tunnel from the shelter home to his residence. That means the crimes must have taken place in his residence. I appeal to all DGPs to keep a close eye on all shelter homes," she said.

Joint secretary of the Home Ministry Punya Salila Srivastava said the process was on to procure 79 lakh kits for medical examination of the rape victims.

The kits, which comprises essential items to collect evidence of rape, is being procured with financial support under the Nirbhaya Fund.

Maneka also expressed concerns over the cases of non-resident Indians (NRIs) abandoning Indian women after marrying them in India, urging the police officials of the states to ensure that a swift action is taken in such cases when brought to notice by the victims.

"Such incidents take place across the country. We have reports of eight to 10 cases every day where a foreigner comes (here), weds a woman, uses her for a week and then abandon her. Such women are neither married, nor widows. Please keep an eye on such incidents and take action," she said.