ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Anxious State

Strategies of surveillance of women reveal the state’s warped notion of public safety.


Nikita Sonavane, Ameya Bokil, Srujana Bej write:

Madhya Pradeshs (MP) chief minister, as reported in the media, recently suggested that working women would be required to register themselves at the local police stations for safety tracking. The Uttar Pradesh police followed suit by announcing that Lucknows cameras will be equipped with artificial intelligence to capture photos of women in distress on the basis of their facial expressions to initiate police response. Police reliance on surveillance technology to address womens safety has substantially increased in the aftermath of the 2012 Delhi gang rape. The Nirbhaya fund and Safe City projects have been initiated to reduce sexual offences. In Bengaluru, wrist Raksha bands contain motion sensors and a panic button to alert police when women are in danger; while in Mumbai, `18 crore has been allotted for GIS-mapping of criminal hotspots. The surveillance of women by the state machinery has been rather common, whether it was the case of Gujarat in 2008 or weak judicial responses in other instances.

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Published On : 15th Feb, 2024

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