‘Jogeshwari, Goregaon, Andheri and Malad saw most rape cases’ | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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‘Jogeshwari, Goregaon, Andheri and Malad saw most rape cases’

ByVijay Kumar Yadav and Jayprakash Naidu, Mumbai
Nov 22, 2019 12:28 AM IST

While the city has seen a sharp rise in the incidence of crimes against women and children over the past five years, there has been a marginal drop in reported cases of child sex abuse, rape and molestation in the past year. This was among the findings reported in Praja Foundation’s annual white paper on policing, and law and order in the city.

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Released on Thursday, ‘State of Policing and Law and Order in Mumbai’ analysed crime statistics procured through the Right to Information Act and surveyed 22,845 households in city to gauge attitudes towards reporting crimes and safety in public spaces. The study did not include statistics of cyber and financial crimes.

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Crimes against women and children continue to be areas of concern. In 2014-15, 643 cases of rape and 1,675 cases of molestation were registered. In 2018-19, the numbers jumped by 22% and 51% respectively to 2,533 for molestation and 784 for rape. Praja reported 792 registered cases of rape and 2,358 cases of molestation in 2017-18.

Sixty-nine percent, or 540 cases, of the reported rapes in 2018-19 had child victims. Compared to 928 in 2016-17 and 1,062 in 2017-18, there were 1,039 cases of child sex abuse reported in 2018-19. In 90% of these POCSO cases, the perpetrators were known to the victims. “This is a matter of introspection for us as a society that our children are being abused by people known to them,” said Nitai Mehta, the founder and the trustee of Praja Foundation.

Joint commissioner of police (law & order) Vinoy Kumar Choubey said the Mumbai Police’s initiatives to raise awareness about child sexual abuse include the Police Didi campaign, which has proved effective. “We have expanded the campaign from schools and colleges to residential societies, citizens groups, chawl groups and parents groups in slum pockets,” he said.

The most rape cases (244) were reported in north-western Mumbai (Jogeshwari, Goregaon, Andheri and Malad), while the most molestation cases (739) were registered in north-central Mumbai (Bandra, Kurla and Chembur).

As per the household survey, respondents who either faced or witnessed crimes were hesitant to report them. Of the 27% that faced crimes, 43% did not file police complaints .

Choubey said projects to improve safety in public spaces were in pipeline. “We have identified 1,800 deserted spots, which will be illuminated, put under CCTV surveillance and a two-way mechanism will be in place where a girl or woman can inform the control room directly by pressing a panic button,” he said.

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