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Nirbhaya Fund for Women Protection Violence against women has received unprecedented focus in governance and politics in the aftermath of Nirbhaya incident. Along with comprehensive reform of the Criminal Law Act in 2013, enhanced governance became a priority to urgently tackle widespread violence against women.
Set up with an initial corpus of 1000 crore, it received an additional grant of 1000 crore each in 2014 and 2015. The fund would nance several schemes for making public spaces safer for women and for rehabilitation of victims of sexual assault and violence.
Background to the Fund
The need for urgent safety measures has been repeatedly stressed at several points in time by various committees and the Supreme Court while observing the shortcomings in laws and governance in preventing violence against
The Justice Verma committee, which was set up after the widespread protests in the wake of the Nirbhaya incident, had recommended use of CCTV cameras and GPS in public transport, public emergency response system to make public spaces safer for women
The Justice Usha Mehra committee, which was set up to look into Nirbhaya incident, too made an important recommendations of setting up crisis centre for victims of gender based violence and assault for easy access to legal and medical facilities
Schemes under Nirbhaya Fund
One Stop Centre Scheme, also known as “Sakhi Centres” aims at establishing centres to facilitate women affected by violence. It provides First aid, Medical aid, Police assistance, Legal aid and counselling support.
Mahila Police Volunteers (MPVs) will act as a link between police and community and help women in distress. Haryana has become the first state to start the Mahila Police Volunteer scheme.
Universalisation of Women Helpline – Helpline specifically for women with a common number across the country will link the One Stop Centres.
Abhaya Project – It is the proposed project in Andhra Pradesh for ensuring the safety of Women and Girl child during the transport.
CHIRALI (Friends Forever)
This scheme is implemented in the state of Rajasthan.
Under the scheme, Community Action Groups are constituted under Gram Panchayats to provide enabling environment to support girls and women to move freely and make use of opportunities for their well being.
Who will monitor the Fund?
An Empowered Committee of Officers under the Secretary of Women and Child Development Ministry was setup in 2016 to monitor the fund. It is an inter-ministerial committee appraises and recommends various projects proposed by different Ministries to be funded from the Nirbhaya Fund.
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