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Over 90% of rape accused in Gurgaon are migrants, say activists

Activists claimed the migrant labourers turn to drinking and are addicted to porn

gurgaon Updated: Jun 10, 2017 23:05 IST
Yashaswani Sehrawat
A sizeable chunk of Gurgaon’s migrant population live in Chakkarpur and Sikandarpur villages.
A sizeable chunk of Gurgaon’s migrant population live in Chakkarpur and Sikandarpur villages.(Parveen Kumar/HT PHOTO)

Away from family, they usually live in slums or small rented rooms in Gurgaon. Mostly uneducated or school drop-outs, they work as labourers at construction sites, drive auto-rickshaws and rickshaws or do menial jobs. And most, say activists, turn to the bottle to escape the drudgery and are addicted to pornographic material as well.

These are a few reasons why in over 90% of rape and sexual assault cases in Gurgaon and nearby areas, the perpetrators or the accused are migrants working in the unorganised sector, claimed activists working for survivors of such heinous crimes.

“It is no secret that most of the brutal crimes against women are committed by migrants in the unorganised sector, particularly in Gurgaon, Delhi and the neighbouring regions. Gurgaon, for instance, records an influx of thousands of migrants every year. They stay away from their families, drink a lot, watch porn and most importantly, have little to no fear,” Kamlesh Panchal, former chairperson of the Haryana State Commission for Women, told HT.

As the migrants come from different states, mostly in search of jobs, they usually believe ‘hum kuch bhi kar sakte hain, hume koi nahi pehchanega’ (we can do anything, nobody will recognise us), she said.

Rekha Sharma, a member of National Commission for Women (NCW), said that migrants are found to be involved in ‘not 90, but rather 95% of cases’ of sexual assault. She told HT that drinking and watching porn are the main reasons that drives them to commit such crimes.

In the recent Manesar gangrape and murder case, the arrested accused, while confessing to the crime to the sarpanch of the Bas Kusla village, said that they had been ‘drinking that night and went out of control’. All the three accused in the case are migrants.

In the recent years, Gurgaon has seen a spurt in cases of rape and sexual assault.

This year alone, the Millenium City has recorded as many as seven cases — gang-rape of Sikkimese woman in May, Rohtak gang-rape in May, gang-rape and torture of a woman from West Bengal in April, Pataudi rape case in April, rape and murder of a Darjeeling woman in March, rape and murder of a 10-year-old in Saraswati Kunj in February and the rape of a five-year-old in DLF Phase 1. In all these cases, the culprits were found to be migrant labourers employed in the unorganised sector.

The extent of how unsafe Gurgaon has become for women can be gauged by the fact that until June 2, as many as 52 cases of rape, including 9 cases of gang-rape, were filed, according to police records. Another 100 cases of molestation were registered as well.

There’s more. The Hayana state women’s commission received more than 150 complaints of sexual assault, including 76 cases of rape, over the last three months.

However, a women’s commission official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that around 50% of the complaints that we receive turn out to be false.

But a common factor in most of these cases, besides the brutal nature of the crime, is the fact that the accused or culprits are migrants, the activists said. In many of these cases, including the one in Manesar, even the victims are migrants, say records.

Read I Gurgaon: 3 men allegedly gang rape woman, throw toddler to death from auto

Kanta Singh, state project head, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), India, rued the lack of data to quantify how many migrants, working in the unorganised sector, were found to have been involved in sexual crimes in Gurgaon, and even Delhi.

“In most of the cases that come to light, the migrants are found to be the culprits. In some cases, even the victims are migrants, and sometimes, even related to the accused. It is important to commission and conduct a comprehensive study on this trend,” Singh said.