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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Victims of sexual assault getting younger, predators more brutal

Jatin Anand, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, April 20, 2013
First Published: 01:27 IST(20/4/2013) | Last Updated: 03:01 IST(20/4/2013)

The brutal sexual assault on a five-year-old -referred to as Gudiya by the police - is part of a series of such heinous crimes against children. These dastardly crimes have witnessed a drop in the age of the victims and a rise in the brutality that accompanied the sexual assault.

"Though general criminal tendencies exist in every society, there are sections of population which see more of such tendencies when compared to other sections," said Dr. Nimesh Desai, director, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS).

"While rural-urban migration, the prevalence of pleasure-seeking and the culture shock that is a characteristic of transitional societies are major factors when it comes to such brutal cases, the socio-economic repression of the accused also plays a major part," said Dr Desai.

According to Dr. Desai, the lack of fear that the law and law enforcement agencies inspire in criminals and the bizarre tendencies that overtake the criminal mind from time to time are responsible for some of the most shocking cases of sexual assault to have been reported recently.

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It is in this category that cases such as that of a two-and-a-half-year-old who was sexually assaulted at southwest Delhi's Najafgarh on Thursday and that of a 12-year-old mentally-challenged girl assaulted in north Delhi's Timarpur on April 10, fall.

"It's not as if such cases were not reported to us, or dealt with by us, in the past," claimed a senior police officer. "The difference is that these are now making a dent in the society's consciousness."

"Young children serve as easy target for sexual predators for obvious reasons. But if there's one thing which is worrisome, it is the brutality which accompanies sexual assault these days. Brutality is replacing passion-driven murders," the officer conceded.Police claimed that since most of these crimes are being reported from 'personal spaces' such as homes, vigilant parents and children trained enough to be able to distinguish between a 'good' and a 'bad' touch are the need of the hour.

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