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CM Adityanath launches 'Mission Shakti'; vows 'zero tolerance' to crimes against women

Facing flak over a string of rape incidents in Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Saturday launched 'Mission Shakti' campaign focusing on ensuring the safety and dignity of women and girls, with a stern warning that perpetrators of crimes against females will be dealt with an iron hand.

PTI | Lucknow | Updated: 17-10-2020 23:38 IST | Created: 17-10-2020 23:34 IST
CM Adityanath launches 'Mission Shakti'; vows 'zero tolerance' to crimes against women
The campaign will continue for the next six months till Basant Navratri, the chief minister said. Image Credit: ANI

Facing flak over a string of rape incidents in Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Saturday launched 'Mission Shakti' campaign focusing on ensuring the safety and dignity of women and girls, with a stern warning that perpetrators of crimes against females will be dealt with an iron hand. The chief minister said that 'Mission Shakti', whose start coincided with the commencement of the Navrati festival dedicated to Goddess Durga, is a tribute to the woman who died after being allegedly raped by two men in Balrampur and asserted that his government has "zero tolerance" towards crime against women and girls.

The 22-year-old Dalit woman died after being allegedly raped by two men, who were later arrested, in the district. The incident came close on the heels of the gangrape-murder of another Dalit woman in Hathras that had drawn intense outrage after alleged apathy of the administration. "Those who cast an evil eye on the dignity and self-respect of women will find no place in the state. Perpetrators of such crimes are a blot on the society and the government will deal with them with an iron hand," Adityanath asserted.

The campaign will continue for the next six months till Basant Navratri, the chief minister said. "The first phase of ''Mission Shakti'' will focus on spreading awareness towards ensuring the safety and dignity of women and girl-child.

"In the second phase, ''Operation Shakti'' will target eve-teasers and put them on the path of punishment or reform. If such elements do not mend their ways, they will have to face social-boycott and their pictures will be displayed publicly," Adityanath said. In-state capital Lucknow, Governor Anandiben Patel inaugurated the 'Safe City Project' under which the police and other departments will work towards the safety of women. "Crime against women is increasing, and in this scenario, the responsibility of society increases. If the schemes meant for women are not properly implemented, they will lose their importance. Till such time that women are dependent on others socially or monetarily, they will be exploited. The women have to become empowered," Patel said.

She also asked the police to identify people with "criminal and perverted mindset" and take action against them "Girls are harassed while going to schools. It is because of these people that women do not feel safe in the family. Police must identify these people, and act before they could commit a crime," the governor said. The chief minister said that this year Ram Lila and Durga Puja pandals will also spread the message of ''Mission Shakti'', which will have the involvement of 24 departments.

Various events are lined up during the campaign for which 100 role models among women will be identified in each district to help spread the message of women safety, self-respect and self-reliance. Adityanath described women as a symbol of ''Shakti'' and said gender equality and protection of the girl child should start from home itself.

"Women are venerable in our eternal tradition and Navratri signifies this. In these changing times, the new generation should become the carrier of our eternal tradition, which always professes the cause of women as the prime duty of mankind. ''Mission Shakti'' is a reminder of our duty towards women and girls," he said. Terming female foeticide as a curse, the chief minister said, "Protection of the girl child and giving respect to women should start from home".

Adityanath also expressed his strong views against child marriage, saying such practices should be publicly condemned. In a statement issued in Lucknow, the UP Raj Bhavan said the Governor flagged off 100 pink scooters and 10 four-wheeler police vehicles. Lucknow is among eight cities in the country selected for the 'Safe City Project'.

The central government has approved the project for Lucknow at a total cost of Rs 194 crore with an aim to strengthen the security of women in public places. The UP Governor also said that the responsibility of the universities and educational institutes is not confined only to admission, teaching, examination and results. "Discussions should also be held as to whether the daughters are safe or not, and whether they have information about their rights," she said.

Throwing light on the ''Safe City Project'', Additional Director General of Police (Women and Child Security) Neera Rawat said, "The cost of the projects is shared between the Centre and the state in 60:40 ratio. "These vehicles have a first-aid kit, flashlights and other facilities. The women personnel will combat crimes against women, which will make them feel secure."


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