Crimes against children

Murder of innocence

Print edition : May 11, 2018
The latest NCRB report reveals a shocking rise in the number of rapes and other crimes against children.

DATA from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) for 2016 reveal that the total number of crimes against children, including sexual offences, rose to 1,06,958 from 94,172 in 2015 and 89, 423 in 2014. The crime rate, as a result, also rose to 24.0 from 21.1 in 2015 and 20.1 in 2014.

Crimes under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012, (POCSO) totalled 36,022, with the worst offenders being Uttar Pradesh (4,954), Maharashtra (4,815) and Madhya Pradesh (4,717). The three States also topped in the number of cases of kidnapping and abduction, which numbered 54,723 for the whole country, with Uttar Pradesh registering 9,657 cases, Maharashtra 7,956 and Madhya Pradesh 6,016.

The number of child rapes recorded in 2016, at 19,765, nearly doubled from the 2015 figure of 10,854.

In crimes of a sexual nature, the number of convictions was significantly low. In 2016, 42,196 persons were arrested for sexual offences against children, but the number of convictions totalled only 3,859 and 9,111 persons were acquitted. In the case of child rapes, 24,007 persons were arrested; 2,241 were convicted and 5,693 were acquitted.

Among metropolitan cities, Delhi was the worst offender in the number of crimes against children, although it has been witnessing a slight decline in the past three years. It was followed by Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune and Lucknow (which saw a 582 per cent jump from 2015).

Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Odisha were the top five worst offenders among States in the number of sexual offences against children. Madhya Pradesh registered the highest number of child rape victims (2,479), followed by Maharashtra (2,333), Uttar Pradesh (2,115), Odisha (1,258) and West Bengal (719).

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