After a series of trials, the single emergency helpline number 112, which will connect people in distress with the police, has been made operational in five cities of Maharashtra, officials said on Friday. Citizens in distress can get immediate assistance from police in the state on dialling the helpline number '112' from their phones in Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Thane, Nagpur and Pune, they said.
In the next phase, emergency services like police (100), fire (101), medical (108) and assistance to women in distress (1090) will be integrated with the 112 helpline number across the state, an official said.
The single emergency response number has been activated in five cities and this service will be rolled out in different parts of the state in the near future, he said.
The work of connecting remaining cities of the state with this service is also going on, the official said.
The call made on the number goes to the Emergency Response Centre and from there it is directed to police authorities to assist the citizen in distress, he explained.
In the future, other government agencies will also be integrated with the helpline number, the official said.
The response time of the call is expected to be around eight minutes, he said, adding the quality of the service will be improved gradually.
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh had reviewed the progress of this most ambitious project in February, he said.
As part of this project, the police department is purchasing 1,502 four wheelers and 2,269 two wheelers to respond to emergency calls in time, the official said.
Similar to the United States and many other developed countries, India had launched the service of single emergency helpline number '112' in February 2019.
Initially, 16 states and Union Territories had planned to roll out the service.