Srinagar, Oct 12: The Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India has approved 13 new One-Stop Centres (OSC) for Women for J&K.
According to Secretary Social Welfare, Dr Farooq Ahmad Lone, the news OSCs shall be established in Samba, Udhampur, Poonch, Reasi, Ramban, Kishtwar, Pulwama, Budgam, Ganderbal, Baramulla, Shopian, Kulgam and Kargil. He said with the establishment of 13 new OSCs, the total number of such Centres in the State will go up to 22, covering all the districts.
Dr Lone said these Centres will be fully funded by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India and Rs 5.65 crore have been earmarked by the Ministry for the new OSCs.
He said the project proposal in this regard was formulated by the State Resource Centre for Women, Department of Social Welfare, Government of J&K.
Secretary Social Welfare said OSCs are intended to support women affected by violence, in private and public spaces, within the family, community and at the workplace.
Women facing physical, sexual, emotional, psychological and economic abuse, irrespective of age, class, caste, education status, marital status, race and culture will be facilitated with support and redressal.
Aggrieved women facing any kind of violence due to attempted sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, trafficking, honor related crimes, acid attacks or witch-hunting who have reached out or been referred to the OSC will be provided with specialized services, he said and added that the OSCs shall facilitate immediate, emergency and non – emergency access to a range of services including medical, legal, psychological and counselling support under one roof against any forms of violence against women.
He said the services offered by OSCs include Emergency Response and Rescue Services to provide rescue and referral services to the women affected by violence. For this, he said, linkages will be developed with existing mechanisms such as National Health Mission (NHM) and law enforcing agencies so that the woman affected by violence can either be rescued from the location and referred to the nearest medical facility (Public/ Private) or shelter home.
OSCs, Dr Lone said, will women affected by violence would be referred by OSCs to the nearest Hospital for medical aid/examination which would be undertaken as per the guidelines and protocols developed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
He said these Centres would assist women in lodging FIR /NCR/DIR.
The other facilities to be provided by OSCs include psycho – social support/ counselling. “A skilled counsellor providing psycho – social counselling services would be available on call. This counselling process will give women confidence and support to address violence or to seek justice for the violence perpetuated,” he said and added that the counsellors shall follow a prescribed code of ethics, guidelines and protocols in providing counselling services.
He said to facilitate access to justice for women affected by violence, legal aid and counselling would be provided at OSC through empaneled Lawyers or National/ State/District Legal Service Authority. “The aggrieved woman would be provided with an advocate of her choice in case she wants to engage the same to assist the State Prosecutors in trying her case,” he said and added it would be the responsibility of the Lawyer /Prosecutor to simplify legal procedures for the aggrieved woman and advocate for her exemption from court hearings.
The OSC, he said will also provide temporary shelter facility to aggrieved women. For long term shelter requirements, arrangements will be made with Short Stay Homes (managed/affiliated with government/NGO).
To facilitate speedy and hassle-free police and court proceedings, the OSC will provide video conferencing facility if the aggrieved woman wants, she can record her statement for police/ courts from OSC itself using audio – video electronic means.
Dr Lone said a woman can access the OSC through any person including any public-spirited citizen, public servant, relative, friend, NGO, volunteer etc, or through Women Helpline integrated with police, ambulance and other emergency response help lines.
JK Cong rings Delhi even for minor decisions: Omar
Srinagar, Apr 21: National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah Sunday said Congress leaders from Jammu and Kashmir are not allowed to take decisions on their own.
“When we were in an alliance with Congress, I noticed it myself that even for minor decisions they have to seek permission from party leadership in New Delhi,” Omar told reporters on the sidelines of a party function in South Kashmir.
However, Omar said, NC candidates for Parliamentary Elections if elected will not have to take “dictation” from New Delhi.
“Not only New Delhi but even National Conference top leadership. Our Parliamentarians will just have to represent the voice of people of Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
Omar said people should come out to vote as boycotting elections will only help the BJP and RSS.
He said it was unfortunate that Election Commision of India was ignoring repeated violations of Model Code of Conduct by Prime Minister Narendara Modi and top BJP leadership.
Cong, BJP same when it comes to nat’l interest: Mehbooba
Srinagar, Apr 21: Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti Sunday said Congress and BJP are always on the same page when it comes to “national interest”.
She said whether it was Ghulam Nabi Azad’s transfer of forest land to Amarnath Shrine Board in 2008 or the 2013 hanging of Afzal Guru or the BJP’s poll plank of scrapping Article 370, both parties considered national interest to be of paramount importance.
Only regional parties like PDP were concerned about the interests of Jammu and Kashmir, she told reporters on the sidelines of a party function in South Kashmir.
The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister also said no religion should be blamed for terror acts.
Health Ministry left with no vaccines for Haj pilgrims
New Delhi, Apr 21: The Health Ministry is grappling with paucity of meningitis vaccines for Haj pilgrims as the only firm manufacturing them was asked to stop production last year after contamination was detected in their oral polio vaccines.
According to sources in the Health Ministry, the only firm which manufactured the vaccines and provided it to the government, was asked to stop production of all human vaccines after type-2 polio virus contamination was detected in oral polio vaccines.
Following the ban on the Ghaziabad-based pharmaceutical company Biomed Pvt Ltd, the ministry is now looking for options to arrange the vaccines in time for vaccinating the pilgrims, the sources said.
Around 1.27 lakh people are expected to go for the annual Haj pilgrimage in July this year for which the ministry will have to arrange for at least 1.47 Lakh doses.
Extra vaccines are kept as some are rendered ineffective in the process of delivery to the states.
The Health Ministry is already in talks with two firms which import the vaccines, the sources said.
Those going to Saudi Arabia for the purpose of Umra or pilgrimage are required to submit a certificate of vaccination with the quadrivalent (ACYW 135) vaccine against meningitis, proving the vaccine was administered no more than 3 years ago and no less than 10 days before arrival in the country.
Biomed Pvt Ltd was a licensed indigenous manufacturer for Meningococcal Polysaccharide vaccine while two firms M/s Sanofi Pastuer India Pvt Lt, Mumbai and M/s GlaxoSmithkline Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Mumbai are importers for quadrivalent Meningcoccal Meningitis Conjugate Vaccine in the country.
“Earlier with Biomed Pvt Ltd providing the vaccines, government spent Rs 250 for each vaccine but now if they have to buy from companies which import the vaccines, they may have to shell out around Rs 1500 per dose. The Health Ministry is already in talks with the two firms which import the vaccines,” the sources said.
Biomed Pvt Ltd was directed to stop the manufacture, sale and distribution of all human vaccines including the Quadrivalent Meningococcal Meningitis vaccine aftertype-2 polio virus was found in the sewage and stool samples in Maharashtra, Telangana and Uttar Pradesh in September last year.
The polio drops were sent for testing which confirmed that some of them were contaminated with type-2 virus, a strain believed to have been eradicated in 2016.
The managing director of Biomed Pvt Ltd., which was supplying polio vaccines for only government-run immunisation programmes, was arrested after the central drug regulator filed a complaint and an FIR was registered.
The destruction of traces of type-2 polio virus was ordered by the central drug regulator to all manufacturers in 2016.
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