UP reported 25% of crimes against people from SC communities
Uttar Pradesh accounted for a fourth of all crimes against Scheduled Castes in 2019, and pendency of cases across India in which the marginalised caste was the victim was nearly 94%, showed a report by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).
The report recorded 45,852 crimes against SCs – or one every 12 minutes – across India in 2019, representing a rise of 7.3% from the previous year. This came amid growing outrage over the alleged gang rape and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit woman whose body was forcibly cremated by the Police in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras.
Uttar Pradesh (11,829) reported the highest cases, followed by Rajasthan (6,794) and Bihar (6,544). The next two states in the list are Madhya Pradesh (5,300) and Maharashtra (2,150). These top five states accounted for 71% of cases of atrocities against Scheduled Castes.
WATCH | ‘Hathras girl wasn’t raped; bid to stir caste tension’: UP ADG Prashant Kumar
To be sure, Uttar Pradesh is the most populous state in India.The crime rate – which is a measure of crime cases relative to the population of SC – was highest in Rajasthan, followed by Madhya Pradesh and Bihar.
The pendency rate in cases in which the victims were SCs was significantly higher than the national pendency rate of 88.9%.
In 2019, 204,191 cases involving SCs were up for trial in India, and only 6%, or 12,498, saw the trial completed. Of this, only 32% of cases led to a conviction and 59% to an acquittal. Less than 10% of the registered cases on crimes against SCs were found false.
Simple hurt constituted the highest proportion of total crimes against Scheduled Castes (28.89%), and rape of SC women made up 7.59% of the total registered crimes.
Activists said the figures pointed towards the vulnerability of SCs.
“Every day, nine Dalit women are raped in this country, this just shows the total lawlessness in this country! In the Hathras case, even in death, she was not treated in a dignified way! What can we expect from a state that has the highest crimes against Dalits?” asked Beena Pallical of the National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights.
Raja Bagga, a senior officer at the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, pointed out that police filed charge sheets in 78% cases of crimes against SCs nationally.
“Abysmal charge sheeting rates of 34% and 49% in Jharkhand and Rajasthan respectively is a reflection of how the police investigates caste atrocity cases. The most curious case is of Rajasthan where the police in 2905 cases ( 40% of the 7374 cases under investigation) of crimes against SC submitted a final report, i.e closed the case as false,” he said.