A division bench comprising justices Sandeep Mehta and Vinit Kumar Mathur gave the directions in pursuance of the observation that there were many mentally challenged and traumatised women in shelter homes but there were no counselors for them.
The bench further directed the Social Welfare Department to appoint trained female officers in all the vacant posts by the next date of hearing on May 15.
The high court had sought a detailed report after having learnt the deplorable living conditions in the women shelter homes in the state.
Based on the reports, the amicus curiae had submitted suggestions to improve the situation, specially with regard to the condition of mentally challenged or traumatised women in these homes.
Taking a serious note of the situation, the court stated that providing a full-fledged counselor to the mentally challenged women was their fundamental right as enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution.
"Keeping in view the fundamental requirements of these neglected ladies who come into contact with the system and are kept in the homes, round the clock availability of counselors is essential. Merely engaging counselors on job basis cannot serve the purpose of the rules nor can same cater to the needs of these ladies who are in dire need of help and support from all corners," the court stated in its order.
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