The National Commission for Women (NCW) has initiated inspection of 12 government-run Swadhar Grehs, shelter homes for women, to ascertain the living conditions of their inmates.
The move comes after a slew of cases of ill-treatment of inmates at shelter homes came to light.
All Swadhar Grehs in the country will be surveyed within a period of one year and reports presented to the Ministry of Women and Child Development, NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma said.
Academicians, activists and women and child development officials have been asked to work out a plan of action for a comprehensive and in-depth survey of all Swadhar Grehs in the country, she said.
There are a total of 559 Swadhar homes across the country, Sharma added.
"There is a need to carry out assessment of the implementation of the scheme (Swadhar Greh Scheme) at the ground level so that the functioning of these homes can be improved and the objectives of the scheme are optimally realised," she said.
Sharma said the Swadhar Greh Scheme would lose its "sheen" if the implementation is not monitored effectively.
The scheme was launched by the government to help women in need of institutional support for rehabilitation.
Sharma pointed out that irrespective of the duration of their stay in Swadhar Grehs, the women need to be prepared to join the mainstream society and also be empowered economically.
The decision for inspection of all 559 shelter homes was announced by the commission last month.
To start with, the exercise will focus on six states -- Bihar, Karnataka, Mizoram, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal, Sharma had said.
Last month, 11 girls went missing from a Swadhar Greh in Bihar, run by the NGO of Brajesh Thakur, prime accused in the infamous Muzaffarpur girls' shelter home rape case.
This was followed by another case of deaths of two women under mysterious circumstances at another shelter home in Bihar.
Similar cases were reported from shelter homes in Uttar Pradesh.
The inspection would include interaction with inmates of Swadhar Grehs, authorities concerned, officials and non-officials, and other such persons as considered necessary to ascertain facts and to finalise its findings and make recommendations, an NCW official had said.