Delhi witnessed a steep rise in crime against women in 2014 with the number of rape cases growing by more than 30 per cent while cases of molestation registering a jump of around 25 per cent as compared to 2013.
The analysis of the data available with police also revealed that nearly 96 per cent rapes were committed by having acquaintance with the victim or her family members. Only in 4 per cent cases, strangers were found involved.
In the year 2014 (up to 15th December), 2069 rape cases were reported as compared to 1571 cases in the corresponding period of the year 2013.
4179 cases of molestation of women were reported during the year 2014 (upto 15th December). Out of these, as many as 67.17 per cent cases have been solved. All complaints received in police stations pertaining to rape, molestation of women and eve-teasing have been dealt with on priority, data released today by Delhi Police revealed.
“95.94 per cent of the rape cases reported to police have been committed by accused known to the victim or her family. Special care was taken in respect of investigation of rape cases and emphasis was given on collecting scientific evidence. Women Police officers were preferably assigned the investigation,” said a senior police official.
Speaking at the annual press conference of Delhi Police, Commissioner B S Bassi said, “One of my foremost concerns during the year 2014 has been the safety and security of women in Delhi. A number of steps have been taken by Delhi Police in this regard and a few were listed out by me last year.”
While continuing to sustain those measures, newer path breaking initiatives have been taken during 2014. Crimes against women are monitored on a regular basis by the method of crime mapping.
Consequently, approximately 80 per cent of cases of crime against women are being worked out within first fortnight of the reporting of an incident.
The top cop also emphasised on the need of teaching self defence techniques to women so that the physical capacity gap between them and men can be bridged.
Bassi said that the women recruits of Delhi Police will now be given a complete year-long unarmed combat training so that when they walk out of the academy all of them are brown belt.
“We are also planning to rope in all the right minded and trained people from the general public for imparting self-defence training to women,” he said.
“Crime against women is a blot on our social order. A society that claims to revere and respect women has not been able to fully tame men with criminal mind set.
“Physical capacity gap between an ordinary male and a female subconsciously encourages assailants to commit their dastardly act. Hapless victim rarely has physical capacity to fight back. A complete overhaul of male mind set by inculcating right values is called for,” Bassi said.
This, however, is going to take time. In the interregnum women would need to be imparted self defence training so that the physical capacity gap between man and women is bridged. This would enable women to adequately and effectively defend themselves if the need arises, he added.
Bassi said that self defence training for women is one key area of our strategy to empower women to repel any assault on their person. During 2014 as many as 15,583 women have been imparted basic self defence orientation by Delhi Police.
This, however, is not adequate. The problem is far bigger. Though victims belong to all age groups and strata of society, yet majority of victims are in the age group of 15 to 30 years.
Women shall be better empowered if self defence training is introduced as a compulsory subject for girl students from 2nd or 3rd standard by slightly tweaking their school routine to take 3 to 5 minutes from each of the periods for imparting self defence training. This shall ensure that every girl shall be capable of defending herself when she reaches the vulnerable age group, he said.
Bassi also mentioned about the ‘Himmat’ smartphone app which was launched on Thursday to enhance safety of women in the national capital.
“The woman user can raise SOS alert by either shaking the phone, or by using button switch installed in audio jack or by using the mobile soft button in the application. Alerts will then go to her family members as well as the police control room. Once the woman raises an alert, her location, video and audio of 30 seconds are shared with the Central Police Control Room,” he said.
The control room will get alert and then the dispatcher will guide PCR Van to attend to the women caller. The app will keep giving 10 seconds update on the dynamic location of the woman in distress. It can be downloaded by women on Android smart phones and registered with Delhi Police website.
All police stations of Delhi have been mapped on this app. This is being integrated with the existing PA-100 system, he added.