109 toll-free helpline becomes great solace to women

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DHAKA, April 4, 2018 (BSS) – The national helpline 109 has become a great support to the women and children as they have been getting necessary assistance by dialing the toll-free number since its launching in June, 2012.

The helpline has been established in a joint initiative of Bangladesh and Danish governments under the Women and Children Affairs Ministry to help women and children who become victim of different forms of violence.

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has provided the toll-free phone number for the helpline under the Women Repression Resistance Multi-sectoral Programme.

A total of 7 lakh 64 thousand 25 phone calls were made to the number from June, 2012 to February, 2018, according to the helpline centre.

Of the calls, 6 lakh 93 thousand 93 were made for getting various types of information while 33 thousand 468 for legal advices, 12 thousand 689 for police assistances, 4 thousand 262 for counseling, 1 thousand 735 for health services and 17 thousand 932 for various assistances.

Most of the callers sought advices and assistance for preventing child marriage and physical, verbal and mental abuses. Many calls had also been made for assistance from authorities concerned in case of disappearance, cyber crimes and fire incidents.

“The helpline centre provides necessary information and services to the people as per their requirement,” Dr Abul Hossain, the Project Director of the Multi Sectoral Programme, said.

Hossain said besides providing necessary information and available support, the centre links the service seekers with experts and authorities and agencies concerned like doctors, counselors, lawyers, DNA experts, law enforcers.

The help centre also provides information about other helplines operated by different government agencies and non-government organizations, he said.

This service is open to all and accessible through all mobile network and landline round-the-clock and seven days a week from across the country.

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