Chairperson of National Commission for Women Chairs 3rd Monitoring Committee Meeting for Women’s Safety in Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir

Leh, June 13 – The 3rd Monitoring Committee Meeting for Special Cells for Women in Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir, under the project titled “Violence Free Home – A Woman’s Right,” was convened under the chairmanship of Rekha Sharma, Chairperson of the National Commission for Women. The meeting took place in Leh, where Commissioner/Secretary of the Social Welfare Department, UT Ladakh, Padma Angmo, was present. The meeting was organized by the National Commission for Women in collaboration with the Department of Social Welfare, UT Ladakh, Ladakh Police, and Tata Institute for Social Sciences (TISS).

During the meeting, Aarthi Chandrasekhar, Coordinator of RCI-VAW TISS, provided an overview of the ongoing work in both Union Territories since November 2022. She also highlighted the challenges faced and outcomes achieved by the Special Cell for Women.

Regarding Ladakh, the meeting focused on discussing strategies and measures to maximize the outreach of the Special Cells, particularly in the remote villages of Ladakh. Deliberations were held on organizing special camps periodically in these far-flung areas.

Junaid Sheikh, DIG Ladakh, affirmed that the Special Cells in Ladakh are already working closely with the Ladakh Police and assured full support in achieving maximum outreach.

The Chairperson emphasized the importance of close collaboration and coordination among all stakeholders, including the Special Women’s Cell, District Administration, One Stop Centre, Social Welfare Department, Police Department, and Health Department, to achieve optimal results. She also directed the officials concerned to prepare a six-month calendar of events and share it with all stakeholders to facilitate their participation and contribution, while ensuring that there is no duplication in data compilation.

Commissioner Secretary Padma Angmo informed the chair about the ongoing construction of Shakti Sadan/Working Women’s Hostels in both districts of Ladakh. She highlighted the crucial role these hostels will play in providing support to distressed victims.

Commissioner Secretary Padma Angmo requested the NCW to provide training for members of the Internal Complaints Committee on the “Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal) Act, 2013.” She also requested training for the Police and the Child Development Project Officers (CDPOs) appointed as Nodal Officers under “the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005,” and as Child Marriage Prohibition Officers under “the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006,” covering various aspects of the two Acts.

District Magistrate Shrikant Suse assured that he would periodically review the functioning of the Special Cell to ensure effective coordination among various departments involved in the welfare and safety of women.

The Special Cell for Women is supported by the National Commission for Women, Government of India, and implemented by Tata Institute of Social Sciences, RCI-VAW. Two women’s cells have been operationalized in Ladakh, one in Leh and one in Kargil districts.

Member Secretary of NCW, ADGP Jammu, Commissioner Secretary Jammu & Kashmir Sheetal Nanda, and other participants joined the meeting online, while Suman Beniwal, Director of the Social Welfare Department Ladakh, Dr. Trupti Jhaveri Panchal, Project Director of RCI-VAW TISS, and other senior officials from Ladakh attended the meeting in person.

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