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Centre is not serious about women’s safety, claims AAP

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Raising the issue of security of women, AAP on Thursday charged that the Centre was “not serious” about the same and accused it of not installing CCTVs in the national capital.

Referring to observations by Delhi High Court regarding women’s safety in Delhi, the party said that if Delhi Police could install 25,000 CCTV cameras for the four-day visit of President Barack Obama, why could it not do the same for the sake of ensuring the security of women.

High Court on Wednesday told the Centre that while it follows austerity measures vis-a-vis increasing the strength of Delhi Police personnel, it should ensure that life and liberty issues “do not take a backseat”.

Citing the court’s observations regarding women’s safety in Delhi, AAP leader Sanjay Singh said, “When the US President came to India, the Centre installed around 25,000 cameras in the national capital for his security for four days.

“If you could instal so many cameras for the security of Obama, why can’t you instal these for the security of the women in the capital.”

Regarding installation of CCTV cameras in Delhi, the court was told that a meeting was held between the city government and Delhi Police officials on October 8 where it was agreed to set up cameras at locations provided by the police, including 44 sensitive areas.

“Delhi Police have informed time and again that there is a shortage of 16,000 police personnel in its force and the Union Finance Ministry has shot down the proposal (to raise its strength) saying it will require Rs 483 crore for this. In case of CCTVs, HC had directed Delhi Police to instal cameras across the national capital, but MHA shot it down saying it will require Rs 400 crore for this purpose,” claimed AAP’s Delhi unit secretary Dilip Pandey.

The party also wondered what the basis was for Delhi Police’s estimate that Rs 400 crore was required for installation of CCTVs in the national capital.

“On what basis have Delhi Police and Home Ministry decided that a budget of Rs 400 crore is required for the installation of CCTV cameras because, according to our estimates, the budget would be lower. Rs 400 crore is nothing for the security of our mothers, sisters and daughters, but we want to know the basis on which they have calculated the amount,” he added.

AAP also raised the issue of shortage of staff in Delhi Police and said there was an urgent need of 16,000 more personnel. The party claimed that as per its promise, its government has installed CCTV cameras in 200 buses in the city and has also appointed 1,500 guards to ensure a safe commute for women.