Two new homes for destitute women
Leena Gangopadhyay, chairperson of West Bengal Commission for Women, inaugurated two short stay homes for destitute adult women on Monday.
The homes, named “Nabodishaa,” will run at Punjabbipara in Siliguri and Bandhunagar in neighbouring Jalpaiguri.
“Around a fortnight ago, we gave approval to the Darjeeling District Legal Aid Forum for setting up the short stay homes here. The new facilities will definitely help destitute women, especially victims of human trafficking. The commission will give all necessary guidance and assistance to forum members,” said Gangopadhyay, after inaugurating the home in SIliguri.
Gautam Deb, the mayor of Siliguri, was present at the event.
Members of the forum – a social organisation which has been providing free legal aid and is also working against human trafficking – had earlier identified three locations of the city and the one at Bandhunagar as proposed shelters.
They had informed the chairperson of the state commission for women who, in turn, had inspected the sites last month.
Amit Sarkar, president of the forum, said they have been working to establish such facilities for the destitute females, who are 18 years or and above, for the past 10 years.
“The administration and law enforcing agencies face inconveniences with such girls and women in providing them appropriate shelter before they are rehabilitated. Keeping this in view, we had appealed to the state child and family welfare department and the women's commission for setting up a home here. We are happy that finally, the facilities have been opened here,” said Sarkar.
He mentioned that each of these homes can accommodate a maximum of 10 women. The homes will also provide medical assistance, food and other basic amenities during their stay.
“We will also conduct counseling sessions of the victims and their families for their rehabilitation and will provide legal assistance,” Sarkar added.