Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday told the PM Delivery Unit (PMDU) to establish a national emergency helpline within two months, said the Ministry of Information in a tweet.
“Motorway incident: Big decision by Prime Minister Imran Khan. The government decides to establish a national emergency helpline. Prime Minister Imran Khan has made the PM Delivery Unit responsible for this important task,” the tweet read.
These orders come in the wake of the motorway gang-rape which occurred earlier this month when a woman was sexually abused when her car stopped while travelling on the Lahore-Sialkot highway.
There have been implications of a blame game wherein the woman was unable to receive assistance as the area where her car halted was not in the jurisdiction of the Pakistan National Highway and Motorway Police (PNH&MP), according to a spokesperson.
The information ministry, in a series of tweets on Wednesday, said that a separate system would be constituted for the national emergency helpline. “There will be one helpline number for any emergency nationwide,” it added.
All existing helplines across the country would be connected to the new national helpline, the ministry said, adding that the number of the helpline would be toll-free.
This new system would be based on the latest technologies, and the information ministry intends to ask mobile companies for their cooperation. Discussions with provinces in this regard would also be held, it added, as the goal is to make the system “effective and permanent”.
“Immediate assistance of the citizen will be possible,” it concluded.