New Delhi, Sep 10: India’s capital, whose name was mud after the Dec 16 gang rape and several such incidents after that, recorded a staggering 1,036 rape cases in the first eight months of this year, according to police data. The figure is the highest in the last 10 years.
From Jan 1 to Aug 15, the city recorded 1,036 rape cases, of which the police was able to make arrests in 88 percent of the cases within a few days, data compiled by the Crime Branch said.
In fact, 393 rape cases were recorded in the first quarter from Jan 1 to March 31. This was more than double the 152 cases recorded in the corresponding period of 2012.
In the next four-and-half months from April 1 to Aug 15, the number further went up to 643. Against this, 661 cases were reported from from Jan 1 to Dec 15, 2012 as compared to 564 cases in the like period of 2011.
In 2010, 507 rape cases were registered as compared to 469 in 2009. In 2008, the figure was 466, while in 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, and 2003 the figures were 598, 623, 658, 551, and 490.
Police said their investigations have shown that over 90 percent of crimes against women were committed by those known to the victims, while a small percent of them were by strangers.
“In most of the rape cases, accused were known to the victim and this makes prevention of such crimes comparatively more difficult,” the police officer, on condition of anonymity, told IANS.
According to the officer, post Dec 16, Delhi Police has been continuously making efforts to spread awareness amongst various sections of the society through ‘Parivartan’, a campaign for the safety of women in Delhi, and also steadily increasing visibility of women police officers in select police stations, Police Control Room (PCR) vans and motorcycle patrols to curb crimes against women.
“We immediately file rape cases when a victim comes to us. Special care is taken in such investigations. We give emphasis on collecting scientific evidence and all such investigations are carried by women police officers,” Delhi Police spokesperson Rajan Bhagat told IANS.
According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), the number of rape cases registered in India increased by a startling 870 percent, from 2,487 in 1971 to 24,206 in 2011.
This is more than three times the increase in murder cases in the last 60 years.
As per the NCRB data, Delhi is among the six top-most cities of India where 2.8 percent rape cases were per lakh of population were registered in 2011. Bhopal tops the list, followed by Jabalpur, Gwalior, Indore and Faridabad.
“We have taken a number of steps to instill a sense of security among women. We have women helplines that are manned by women officials also. Women officials are specially trained to address the grievances of the victims,” Bhagat said.
A special women’s cell has also been set up to handle women-related cases.
(Rajnish Singh can be contacted at email@example.com)