Assam recorded highest rate of crime against women in India for the 5th consecutive year, according to the latest National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) figures for.
The rate of crime against women in Assam last year was 168.3, which is way higher than the national rate of 64.5. Delhi came second with 147.6 and Odisha third with 137.8.
The rate of crime is calculated as the number of total crimes recorded per 100,000 population. In 2017, the rate of crime against women in Assam was 143.3; it was 166 in 2018, 177 in 2019 and 154.3 in 2020.
The rate of charge sheets filed in 2021 for total cases in Assam was 52.9%, which is much lower than the national rate of 77.1%. Last year, 29,046 cases of crime against women were registered in Assam- a 10.22% increase since 2021 when the state recorded 26,352 cases. In 2019, the figure was 30,025 and in 2018 it was 27,687, the NCRB report stated.
In 2020, Assam recorded 46 instances of rape-cum-murder/gang rape—the second highest figure in the country after Uttar Pradesh, which recorded 48 cases. The figure is a big increase from 26 such instances recorded in Assam in 2021.
The state recorded 1,835 cases of rape last year in comparison to 1,658 cases in 2020. There were 563 cases of attempted rape and 4,511 cases of assault with intention of outraging modesty last year.
“This is one distinction, which no one in Assam wants. One reason for the high numbers could be that most victims in Assam come forward to report cases. And the police register those cases promptly instead of the women being turned away like in some other states,” said a senior police officer on condition of anonymity while quoted by Hindustan Times.
While cases of dowry deaths were few and far between several years ago, there has been an increase in such crimes in Assam in past years. Last year, 198 women died due to dowry-related cases across the state; in 2020 it was 150. Nine cases of acid attack on women were also recorded in 2021.
Of the total cases of crime against women registered in Assam last year, 12,950 were of cruelty by husband or his relatives under Section 498A of IPC. The state recorded 5,866 cases of kidnapping and abduction of women in 2021—of them 3,362 cases were of kidnapping and abduction to compel for marriage.
The state recorded 1,948 cases under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act of which 1,317 were of child rape, 424 cases of sexual assault and 158 of sexual harassment. The total number of cases under POCSO Act in Assam in 2020 was 1,496.
Assam recorded 432 cases of cyber-crimes targeting women, which included publishing or transmitting sexually explicit material. It is the second highest figure in the country after Odisha, which recorded 565 cases.