A smartphone app aiming to address violence against women and children was launched yesterday.
Ministry of Women and Children Affairs organised the launching ceremony at Bangladesh Shishu Academy in the capital.
The app, named JOY, can help women and children in emergency situations whenever they face violence. A victim can press an emergency button on the app, which will send text messages seeking help to the police super of the area, metropolitan deputy police commissioner, three pre-selected 'friends and family' numbers, and to a national help centre (109).
Once the emergency button is turned on and if there is internet connection, the app will send the victim's GPS location, picture and audio recording to concerned authorities. On the basis of the evidence, the help centre will take necessary steps.
A victim can also file a written complaint choosing the category of the crime from the app. Anyone can attach proof, including video or audio, later. All the information will be kept secret and the app is free when sending SMS or call to the help centre.
JOY can be used on any handset running on android operating system. It can be downloaded from Google Play Store typing “JOY 109”.
Funded by ICT Division under its “Access to Information” (a2i) project, the app was developed by the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs under its “Multi-Sectoral Programme on Violence against Women”.
Speaking as chief guest at the event, State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroz Chumki said, “This app will help women and children, while it will also work against criminals.”
A total of 12 crore people in country use mobile phones now and such apps will definitely be useful for the users, she added.
Bangladesh Shishu Academy director Anjir Liton; Krishna Pada Roy, additional commissioner (Crime and Operations) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police; and Nasima Begum, secretary to Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, also spoke at the programme.