Delhi recorded a 17% rise in crimes against women in the first six and a half months this year as compared to the respective period last year, according to Delhi police data.
An average of six cases of rape and eight cases of assault on women were reported daily, the data show.
The total number of crimes against women recorded from January 1-July 15 last year was 6,747, while the number went up to 7,887 this year.
There has been a 19% rise in cases of assault on women, while the number of rape cases has gone up by 7%. In most cases of rape and assault, the victim and accused are known to each other, said a senior police officer.
Instances of cruelty by husband and in-laws have risen by 29% during the said period. The data show that 69 cases of dowry deaths and seven under the Dowry Prohibition Act have also been reported.
Cases of kidnapping of women have increased by around 17%, while cases of abduction of women went down by almost 43%. Cases of insult to the modesty of women have gone down —229 cases were reported last year and 225 were reported this year, according to the data.
Explaining the rise in crimes against women, the senior police officer said it’s because they are now focusing on registering FIRs. “No matter what the crime is, if a woman felt uncomfortable at a certain place, cases should be brought to our notice and we will ensure that an FIR is registered,” the officer said.
A lot of women, said the officer, find it difficult to approach the police, and keeping this in mind, “we have launched awareness campaigns that teach people how to approach local police officers”.
“We also regularly inform the local police to interact with the residents, including women, in their areas. More conversations will build their trust in police,” the officer added.
The officer said the self-defence training programme — Sashakti — is helping women learn to protect themselves not just physically but also against cybercrimes. “We have also added women beat constables to look into the issues of women; the ladies mobile patrolling squad ensures that the issues of women don’t go unheard,” the officer said.
In June, DCP (PRO) Suman Nalwa had told The Hinduthat dark spots are being identified by the Delhi police and street lights are being put up to ensure women’s safety.
The officer said areas like parks, bus stops and spots where public drinking happens are being monitored as such places make women feel unsafe.
While the Delhi police’s women help desk works round-the-clock, complainants can also use the emergency number — 112 —or Tatpar Delhi Police app to send an SOS. “Even if we receive a missed call, we verify the case,” the officer said.
“We have 15 cyber police stations with specialised units and investigating officers; we understand there’s a rise, but it is because of rise in investigations,” the officer said.