March 2003 News

J-K's First All-women Police Station Turns Tide, Heads

7 March 2003
The Indian Express

Srinagar: The sight leaves onlookers gaping. For AK-47-toting women police personnel signalling male motorists to stop are new to J-K. Outside the first all-women police station at Nehru Park here, male police personnel and bystanders gather to watch women enforce law. On the ground floor of the police station, Inspector Naseem Akthar, who heads the 30-strong police station, has been besieged with complaints. 'From March 1, women have been pouring in with their complaints,' says Akhtar. Md Sultan Langoo also sees hope in Inspector Akthar. His daughter has reportedly been abused by her in- laws: 'I have been going from one police station to another. Now I am hopeful.' Outside, tempers flare as Shafiqa Bhat directs one motorist to stop. An angry woman steps out of her car fuming that Shafiqa was rude to her. A few feet away, two of her male colleagues claim they would have dealt appropriately with such a rude remark from a civilian. Undaunted, Shafiqa continues with her duty. Kashmir IG K. Rajendra hopes the all-women police station would end stereotypes about police.


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