A 24-hour helpline has been started to help inter-caste couples lodge complaints against harassment, the Tamil Nadu government told the Madras High Court on Thursday. Special cells, comprising deputy commissioners of police and superintendents of police, have also been formed in all districts and cities, reported PTI. The helpline and details of the special cells will soon be uploaded on all police and government websites.
The government was responding to a contempt petition filed in connection with the death of Vimaladevi from Usilampatti in Madurai district. She had committed suicide in 2016 after her parents refused to accept her marriage with a person of a different caste. Petitioner K Samuelraj, who is the state secretary of Tamil Nadu Untouchability Eradication Front, alleged that the government had not complied with the court’s orders after Vimaladevi’s death.
The government said that an online complaint registration facility has also been set up in the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems as well as mobile applications, which can be used by harassed citizens or their family members. The complaints can be sent online to the police stations. “This prevents the necessity of the inter-caste couples or even their relatives to physically go to the police station and give a complaint at the very first instance,” said the government affidavit.
The case will be heard next on August 9.