‘They cannot shirk responsibility in implementing law and order'

On a day when womanhood was being celebrated world over, the Lok Sabha members sought to corner the government on increasing crime against women and children.

Responding to the charges that the government was found wanting in dealing with the situation, Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram said the State governments cannot shirk their responsibility in implementing law and order to rein in such incidents.

Replying during Question Hour, Mr. Chidambaram said the Centre issued advisories to State governments from time to time on implementation of law and order. "These advisories are intended to be directives to the State government," he said, and asked members to take up such issues with the State governments.

Pointing out that the Centre often gets criticised for "encroaching" upon the rights of the States when such advisories are issued, Mr. Chidambaram said all of us respect and zealously guard the rights of the States.

Janata Dal (United) member Meena Singh sought to know from the Minister on when the government would be able to take effective steps in curbing crime against women and children. "The government keeps saying that law and order is a State subject and it has issued advisory to the State government. How long will the government keep making the same statements," she asked.

Anti-human trafficking units

Mr. Chidambaram said the government was in the process of setting up 335 anti-human trafficking units in the country. The Ministry of Home Affairs has released Rs. 8.72 crore as the first instalment to all States for the establishment of 110 anti-human trafficking units, he said.

The Home Minister said the National Human Rights Commission had registered 23,608 complaints regarding the violation of human rights of women, including trafficking, between April 2007 and January 31, 2011.

"Out of these cases, 23,254 cases have been disposed and 354 cases are pending for consideration," he said. During the same period, the NHRC registered 1917 complaints regarding the violation of human rights of children of which 1779 case have be disposed, he said.

He said in 39 cases of proven violation of human rights of women, the NHRC had recommended monetary relief amounting to Rs 35.25 lakh. In 19 cases of proven violation of human rights of children, the Commission recommended monetary relief of Rs. 54.27 lakh, he said.

Kabindra Purakayastha (BJP) expressed concern over increase in crime against women, particularly those from the north east, in Delhi, and said the national capital region has become a den of crime.

Admitting that crimes against women in Delhi was a serious issue Mr. Chidambaram, however, claimed that the number of incidents had witnessed a decline in the last few months.

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