Experts call for sensitising police about disability

Kolkata, Dec 17 : Observing that police are mostly unaware about the predicaments of the disabled, activists here Tuesday advocated for "disability sensitisation" during training of police personnel.

The activists also urged the government to take steps to ensure monitoring mechanisms in institutions and shelters for the disabled where crimes against women were "quite high" and go unnoticed.

"Not everything can be covered by the law but the government can notify women's groups and other agencies to set up monitoring mechanisms in institutions for the disabled," Muralidharan, secretary of National Platform for Rights of Disabled, told IANS.

"There are quite a lot of incidences of violence against women in these places and these go unreported," Muralidharan added.

Shampa Sengupta, director, Sruti Disability Rights Centre said: "Usually these matters go unnoticed but when there is a pregnancy or death then incidents come to light."

Sengupta said one of the other demands is to have government statistics in place on crimes against disabled women.

Speaking on "Violence on Disabled women: Verma Committee, Criminal Law Amendment Act and the way forward", at the Manovikas Kendra here, Muralidharan said many of their suggestions to the Justice Verma Committee have been incorporated into laws.

However, "implementation is always a question", he said.

According to him, the police are trying to implement the laws but due to lack of awareness about the different forms of disabilities, they are unable to address problems in a proper manner.

"Therefore, disability sensitisation should be a part of police training," he said.

--IANS (Posted on 17-12-2013)

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