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Seminar on The challenges faced by women police officers in our country

Event Date:

January 21, 2016

iLEAD recently played host to eminent director, Mr. Prakash Jha ahead of the release of his much anticipated movie, 'Jai Gangaajal'.

Mr. Jha was accompanied by Manav Kaul (a 'not-so-known' face but a chief actor in the film), Ms. Subhra Chatterjee (Director of 'Vikramshila Education Resource Society'), Ms. Debashree Chatterjee (Deputy Commissioner of Calcutta Police) and Ms. Sudeshna Roy (renowned film maker). The presence of such dignitaries and a panel discussion that followed after the formal introduction by Ms. Subha Dasgupta and felicitation by iLEAD's Chairperson, Mr. Pradip Chopra made for an enlightening session.

Highlights of the panel discussion

Right after the trailer, the panel discussion began at the Dale Carnegie Auditorium at iLEAD. The topic for the discussion was- 'The challenges faced by women police officers in our country and the remedial measures required to address the same'. ILEAD's Chairperson, Mr. Pradip Chopra moderated the event, beginning with Ms. Chatterjee.

Deputy Commissioner of Calcutta Police, Ms. Debashree Chatterjee stressed on the challenges that women usually face when performing their role. Men she said, usually experienced difficulty in accepting a woman in that post. In West Bengal, women constitutes barely 3% of the total police force, which is exactly why she emphasized on the growing need of capacity building, knowledge gain about laws, legal statutes, sociology of the arena and demographic patterns. She extended help by offering the toll free numbers (1091 & 100) in addition to her own before signing off.

Acclaimed Director Sudeshna Roy was averse to gender discrimination but her question targeted to the director was quite relevant to the present context. She asked if women proved more righteous in carrying out their duties than their male counterparts, which partly explains why the latter are used to taking things for granted.

To this, Mr. Prakash Jha related an incident that he witnessed about a gutsy woman police officer in Madhya Pradesh and how it inspired him to make the film. The role of Priyanka Chopra is largely based on from the fearless female officer. Jha is a man who loves to observe what happens in the society. Upon finding issues that he feels must be brought before the people, he adapts them on celluloid. While talking to the audience, he also added that lawlessness can be curtailed if the image of police changes and they stop succumbing to fears of being transferred.

Ms. Subhra Chatterjee's community policing program 'Nobodisha' meant for children added a new flavor to the panel discussion. The attempt to make quality education a reality for underprivileged children led to the formation of Vikramshila. Despite endless resistance from others, Ms. Chatterjee's initiative of building learning centers within police stations is currently a success story. Breaking from the stereotype, the center shows the humane side of policemen and women. This she believed could result in a noticeable transformation in the society.

The session ended with the audience having their own sets of questions, to which the director replied in the wittiest manner!

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