- From 2006 to 2017, Bengaluru City Police received 4,241 complaints under section 354.
- Cases of molestation have increased four times in the past decade.
Bengaluru is largely considered to be a safe place for women. The city continues to attract scores of single women who hope to make their mark in India’s Silicon Valley. But even as people from different parts from the country pour into this city which they consider to be safe, Bengaluru is anything but. According to a new study released by the Commissioner of Police, sexual molestation has increased by four times in the past decade. And those who are arrested are rarely convicted.
From 2006 to 2016, Bengaluru City Police received 4,241 complaints under Section 354. Of this, people were convicted only in 16 cases. The data shows that cases of molestation rose from 150 in 2006 to 776 in 2016. To be sure, section 354 pertains to sexual harassment (354A), use of criminal force with intent to disrobe (354B), voyeurism (354C) and stalking (354D). However, the study clubs all the complaints under the banner of molestation.
The study also found that conviction rate was dismal even when the police found that the complaint was true 97% of the time. This marks a huge shift in the way the police perceived such complaints in 2006. According to the statistics, the police force attributed 84% of the cases to be real in 2006.
This shift is perspective is welcome for many women in the city. However, the low conviction rate points to a legal system that needs to be strengthened. Court delays are one of the biggest deterrent and statistics show that 2, 248 out of 4,241 cases are yet to be tried. Such delays complicate matter further. Those arrested are allowed to go on bail and commit heinous crimes once they’re out again.
But more than anything else, if there’s a way that crimes of sexual nature can be stopped, then it begins at home. It starts with parents treating their sons and daughters equally.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:47 PM IST