The Chennai Police on Saturday, December 21, arrested three men for allegedly harassing a woman on a Metropolitan Corporation Transport (MTC) bus, after the victim alerted the police through the Kavalan app.
The victim, while travelling on the bus from Broadway to Chennai Central at around 8 pm was allegedly harassed by two intoxicated law graduates and their friend. The Flower Bazaar police arrested the three – M Anandaraj (22) of Virudhunagar, S Arul Kumar (23) of Anthiyoor, Erode and N Ponmani Maran of Salem – on charges of sexual harassment under IPC section 354.
“Around 8 pm, they boarded a bus on route 15 G. Anandaraj and Arul Kumar were drunk and passed comments and teased a woman on the bus,” an officer was quoted in The Times Of India.
The woman then pressed the SOS button on the Kavalan app which was installed in her phone. The Control Room alerted a nearby patrol and sub-inspector Koteeswaran of Flower Bazaar police station nabbed the accused when the bus came to a halt.
The Kavalan App
The Kavalan SOS app is an initiative of the Tamil Nadu State Police. Developed by Amtex Systems, the app can be used to seek help in the case of an emergency.
To alert the police, the person can press a red-coloured button called SOS on the app’s homepage. The control centre will then alert the nearby police station, who will then contact the person in danger. Alternatively, the police will track the person using their GPRS location.
“We usually try calling 100 when there’s an emergency and this number may be sometimes busy. Now, with the app, the person in an emergency situation will receive the call from the police,” S Lakshmanan, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Flower Bazaar, was quoted in The News Minute.
The app can be downloaded on both Android and iOS phones. To register, the users are required to provide their name, phone number, address, date of birth, relative’s name and contact number.
“We want all women who use a smartphone to have the Kavalan app installed on their phones. The aim is to make them feel safe by using this app,” said Lakshmanan.
Earlier this month, the RK Nagar police caught two people after an SOS alert from a woman.