Karnataka govt plans to train women in self-defence

Govt says police beat at night has been increased in Bengaluru and other cities

women-self-defence-pti Representative image | PTI

Women in Karnataka will be trained in self-defence to safeguard them against attacks, in the backdrop of the rape-and-murder of a 25-year-old veterinarian in Hyderabad, state home minister Bommai said on Saturday.

Speaking to reporters here, the Minister said police beat at night has been increased in Bengaluru and other cities in the state to prevent such incidents.

"This is a societal problem...in the background of which we have to take up steps on a bigger scale that are aimed at boosting the self-respect of women...by training them in self-defence, Bommai said.

He said some private institutions provide such training, but it was not enough.

"As a government, as a Home department we must take an initiative, so utilising the infrastructure available with us we want to give self-defence training to women. How many months training should be given, how it should be given- physical, mental, indoor, outdoor- everything should be introduced to build their morale," he added.

Training is likely to be provided at police training schools and self-defence training centres in the state to women who volunteer, also to schools and college students.

Bommai held a meeting with senior police and Home department officials regarding the safety of women.

We discussed on aspects such as- what can be done to prevent such incidents, how to protect one from such incidents, and once case is booked how investigation can be fast-tracked and the guilty be punished, the Minister said.

He said the government has also decided to extend SURAKSHA - a fully integrated personal safety app - to get immediate response to any distress calls. The app is currently functional in the city and other places in the state,

The Minister also said the plan is on to increase number of night patrol vehicles to 500, and introduce GPS facility in them.

Four men were arrested by police in Hyderabad on November 29 for allegedly raping and killing the woman by smothering her and later burning her body, an incident that led to outrage. The four were shot dead by police in an encounter early Friday.

The incident brought to mind the horrors of the December 16, 2012 gangrape and murder of a physiotherapy intern in Delhi.