West Bengal reports sharpest spike in crime against children in 3 years: NCRB
West Bengal recorded the sharpest spike in crime against children in the last three years, says the latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).
According to the NCRB’s Crime in India 2020 report released on Tuesday, Madhya Pradesh, with 17,008 cases of crime against children, tops the list followed by Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra which registered 15,271 and 14,371 cases respectively. West Bengal ranked fourth with 10,248 cases.
Out of the 36 states and Union Territories, only nine have registered a spike in crime against children, as per the report. West Bengal registered the sharpest spike in such crimes listed under Indian Penal Code and Special and Local Laws. While the top 3 states all registered a decline over the past three years, West Bengal, with a rise of 63% from 2018, registered the sharpest spike. Tamil Nadu with a spike of 44% comes next followed by Jammu and Kashmir with 28% rise, and Rajasthan with 27% spike. Jharkhand and Odisha have recorded 21% increase each.
The report reveals that in 2018, Bengal registered 6,286 cases. In 2019, it dropped to 6191 but in 2020 it shot up to 10,248 cases.
However, the state’s rate of crime against children is still low, compared to many states. The rate is calculated as the number of crime cases recorded per 100,000 population, in this case, the children. According to the 2011 census, West Bengal has a population of around 30 million children. The rate of crime against children in the state is around 34%.
In contrast, Sikkim, a small Himalayan state, has reported 147 incidents of crime against children but given its child population of around 200,000, the rate comes to around 71%. Delhi’s rate of crime against children is around 91% while in Andaman and Nicobar Island, it is more than 100%.
Senior government and police officials and even NGOs working in the filed in West Bengal refused to comment on the figures, saying they haven’t gone through the report yet.
The state ranks second after Maharashtra when it comes to cases of kidnapping and abduction of children in 2020. While Maharashtra reported 7,392 such cases, West Bengal had 7,079 cases.