The National Capital had long been grappling with the issues of women’s safety and the brutal gang rape of Jyoti Singh on December 16, 2012, brought it the tag of being the Rape capital of India. Since then Delhi Police has been working hard to free itself of the moniker. But, the constant reports of dark, murky, inhuman act of sexual assaults continue to claw the City of the Jinns.
Recently, in an interview with the TOI, Amulya Patnaik, Police Chief of Delhi who is serving in the position for the past seven months, said that women’s safety is still a challenge in the city.
“Porous borders, constant influx of migrants and proximate location of affluent colonies to underprivileged clusters are key factors that make policing Delhi a highly complex task. Coupled with this, high media sensitivity to incidents makes the challenge even more unique,” said Patnaik about the difficulties.
“The time has come when society has to seriously work on instilling respect for women. And it has to be at a very formative stage through family and school education.”- Amulya Patnaik on Delhi being rape capital
The Delhi police in the past few years become more receptive to women-related crimes in the city. They took precautionary initiatives to curb the crime rate and provide a safe environment for women. One of these initiatives is the Himmat app, which the department has revamped three times in the past four years to make it citizen-friendly.
Women-only PCRs, Sashakti initiative, gender sensitization programmes are some of the other steps.
The other initiative is appointing female staff to make the survivors comfortable to reveal the details of a crime. However, they are still short-staffed as far as the representation of women in the force is concerned.
But the crime rate is decreasing. The NCRB report has shown a dip in rape crimes in the capital in the past two years. However, the pace is very slow. And it doesn’t say anything about the total number of crimes against women, as still a huge number of cases go unreported.
Defending Delhi, Patnaik said to TOI, “Interestingly, the per lakh incidence of rape in Delhi is almost eight times less than Melbourne and six times less than in London. It is unfair, therefore, to give the tag of “rape capital” to Delhi. In any case, Delhi Police considers these crimes as high-priority and we have undertaken several measures over the years. A result is that involvement of strangers in rape case came down from 13.12% in 2001 to 3.59% in 2017.”
Pic Credit: Odisha Times