The number of registered cases of rape increased from 16075 in 2001 to 38891 in 2016. Madhya Pradesh has been reporting the highest cases of rape in all these years. While the number of registered cases has gone up, the conviction rates have remained more or less the same.
Gurmeet Ram Rahim was convicted of rape recently by a special CBI court in Panchkula, Haryana. While this may be an example of the powerful being convicted, the overall conviction rate in rape cases hasn’t really improved in the last 16 years. On the other hand, the number of registered rape cases has more than doubled from 2001 to 2016. So is the case with the number of registered cases of crimes against women.
More than 38000 cases of Rape registered in 2016
The number of registered rape cases in India has gone up from 16075 in 2001 to 38891 in 2016. There was an almost a 35% jump in the number of registered rape cases in 2013, the year after the Nirbhaya incident. This is the highest ever increase in the number of such cases. Since 2013, the number of registered rape cases has been more than 30000 in each year.
In 2010, only seven states registered more than 1000 rape cases each. This number has gone up to 15 in 2015. All through, Madhya Pradesh has been registering the most rape cases in each of the years. In 2014, more than 5000 rape cases were registered in Madhya Pradesh, the only such occasion in the country.
Conviction rate down to 25.5% in 2016
On the other hand, the conviction rate in cases of rape hasn’t really changed in the last 16 years. While it was 26.1% in 2001, it is down to 25.5% in 2016. (Conviction Rate refers to the percentage of cases that resulted in conviction out of the cases in which trials are over). From 2013, the year after the Nirbhaya incident, to 2015, the conviction rate in rape cases had steadily increased to 29.4% only to fall back to 25.5% in 2016.
Among the states with more than 1000 registered cases of rape, only Uttar Pradesh had a conviction rate of more than 50% consistently. West Bengal & Andhra Pradesh have had lower conviction rates all through. In Haryana, the conviction rate has been more or less constant at 25%.
Almost 1/3rd of the registered Crimes against Women are 498A related
The total number of registered cases of crime against women increased from about 1.43 lakh in 2001 to more than 3.5 lakh in 2016. Almost 1/3rd of these cases are related to 498A (cruelty by husband or relatives). Together with 498A, assault & kidnapping cases occupy the top three places in terms of the number of cases of crime registered against women. If cases of rape are included, these four account for more than 80% of the cases of registered crime against women. The cases related to 498A have increased from 49170 in 2001 to 110477 in 2016. On the other hand, kidnapping cases have more than quadrupled in these 16 years, from 14645 in 2001 to 64618 in 2016.
Overall Conviction rate in 2016 lowest in 7 years
The overall conviction rate of crimes against women has seen a consistent decline. From 27.8% in 2010, the conviction rate is down to 19% in 2016. This is much less than the average conviction rate of all IPC crimes which is consistently more than 40%. One of the prime reasons is the lower conviction rate in 498A cases as reported by Factly earlier.