Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is all set to give India its first national emergency number. Like 911 in America and Canada, 999 in Great Britain, ‘112’ will serve as the national emergency number in India soon which is also the primary number in many countries across Europe to deal with emergencies.
The current emergency numbers for the Indian citizens are 100 – for police, 101 – for fire, 102 – for ambulance and 108 – for disaster management. TRAI has proposed to subsume all afore mentioned number into one new number – 112. TRAI said that the calls made by emergency number would be given priority over the mobile networks plus location and other vital details of the caller would be provided to respective agencies to deliver well at the time of emergency.
In the initial phase, 112 would serve calls related to police, fire, ambulance and helplines for senior citizens, women and children while more services may be added with time. It can be tough for TRAI to provide a single emergency number to the whole nation and amalgamate all emergency services into it. Hence the authority has decided to implement the idea in certain phases.
“There are many issues that fall under the ambit of the state governments and thus it will be better to implement this in a phased manner through coordinated action between various establishments.” TRAI secretary Sudhir Gupta.
Recommendation by TRAI for 112 – as a single emergency number for the whole nation may serve as crucial means for the citizens of India at the time of emergencies as the caller will be able to ask for help from their mobile phones or landlines, even if the phone is locked or has no balance amount left, even if the phone is without a valid subscription or if the outgoing call facility has been barred or even if the service is temporarily suspended. All the caller will need a handset with a sim card and a signal irrespective of the service provider.