Women and Child Development (WCD) minister Maneka Gandhi has announced that a pilot project for trial of ‘panic button’ feature on mobile phone would start from Uttar Pradesh on January 26.
“The pilot project (to test the panic button backed by a real-time police response) will start in the state of UP from January 26,” Gandhi was quoted as saying.
Mobile manufacturers were directed by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to mandatorily start giving panic button in the form of numeric key 5 or 9 to invoke emergency calls in cell phones by January 2017. The order came in April 2016.
Several reasons were behind the late implementation of the order.
“If it works in UP, it can work anywhere,” she said.
Gandhi said an earlier trial of the project saw a large number of prank calls, leading to a delay in implementing the panic button feature.
“Once, a user presses the panic button, five calls will be made to emergency number 112. Following this, five SMSs will be immediately sent to police authorities, and another three to five SMSes will be sent to family members of the victim,” Chetan Sanghi, Joint Secretary, WCD, said.
Once the trial is successful in UP, it will be implemented in three other states identified by the Centre and eventually in the entire country.
The government wants to implement panic button system before the end of this calendar year.