Harassment: Women Covid Volunteer Faces Online
Miscreants misuse phone numbers of volunteers put in public domain for relief activities
Arranging oxygen cylinders for patients in need, verifying Covid-19 treatment related information and re-confirming available beds in hospitals across the city has become part of daily life for several volunteers. In the process, phone numbers, including of women, are now in public domain. And this is now being misused by crooks.
Shivani, one of the volunteers, shares that she had to go through a very awkward situation while arranging for oxygen cylinders for Covid-19 patients. “I was contacting oxygen cylinder sellers in Nacharam and called a number found from a source. Although the man helped me, he messaged me later, saying he ‘really liked’ my display picture. This was completely uncalled for. I didn’t reply and he later deleted the message himself,” she says.
That is not all. Many girls who had posted their numbers on social media as the contact for a patient have faced similar situations. According to Sumathi Badugula, DIG, CID, Women Protection Cell, the police was on the lookout for such harassers.
“The number of online harassments has increased in the last few weeks. Anyone who faces such issues can call us. I assure that our teams are working tirelessly to keep an eye on such miscreants. Now that a complaint form is also available online, we are able to reach out to the victim in considerably less time,” she says.