Various rules and laws have been framed and setup for providing protection to women and make them feel safer in the society and this time in India, the Communications and IT ministry has through the Gazette of India notification said that from January 1, 2017, no mobile phone handset manufacturing company shall sell The feature phones without the facility of panic button by pressing ‘numeric key – 5’ or ‘numeric key – 9’ to invoke emergency call.” in India.


As per the notification ‘a feature phone is one that can access the Internet and play music but lacks provisions of an operating system feature of a personal computer while  Smart phone, on the other hand, has all features of a personal computer system.

Image Courtesy: Catchnews

The move comes for providing help and assistance to women in case of emergency as we have seen in recent times the problem with Single women commuting or night shift female employees and other cases also where females have to move alone.

Therefore, in order to make your phone an effective tool for protection and in particular for women, the government is passing a law according to which no such device will be sold from next year without a single key panic button to connect the nearest redressal agency and this comes after a similar move that provides one emergency ‘112’ number for availing services of police, ambulance and fire department.

As Communications and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad sais last Monday in New Delhi “Technology is solely meant to make human life better and what better than using it for the security of women,” “I have taken a decision that from January 1, 2017, no cell phone can be sold without a provision for panic button, and from January 1, 2018, mobile sets should also have Global Positioning System inbuilt,” Prasad said. The ministry will also be soon taking a decision as to which agency would connect the number specifically.

Moreover, the notification also says that “With effect from January 1, 2018, no mobile phone handset manufacturing company shall sell the new mobile phone handset in India without the facility of identifying the location through satellite-based GPS.”

And adding that “Smartphones without the facility of emergency call button by pressing the same for long time to invoke emergency call or the use of existing power on or off button, when short pressed thrice in quick succession.”

Now the question about reaction of Mobile manufcturing companies and their co-operation, the Women and Child Development Minister said.”It took us one year to finalize this initiative.

We held several meetings with mobile companies and they have finally agreed to provide panic buttons in mobile phones,” “If a woman feels she is in trouble, the only thing she has to do is press that button and it will immediately send a message to the police,” the minister explained.

Shibli Hashmi
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