MUMBAI: Mumbai has seen a 96 per cent increase in rape cases and a 165 per cent rise in molestation cases over the last four years, according to data from the annual report of the Praja Foundation on the state of law, order and policing in the city.
Seventy-two per cent of rape cases registered in 2016 had minors as victims, the report said. Of a total 628 rape cases registered, 455 were under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act. In comparison, in 2015, 448 out of 712 rape cases reported had minors as victims.The reporting of rape cases also declined, with 576 cases in 2016-17 compared to 728 in 2015-16, the report said. Similarly, 2,103 molestation cases were reported in 2016-17, compared to 2,145 in 2015-16.
“Between 2012-2013 and 2016-2017, reported cases of rape increased 96 per cent and reported cases of molestation increased 165 per cent. The data also reveals the shocking state of safety of children in the city. Of the total rapes reported for 2016, female children accounted for 72 per cent,” said Milind Mhaske, Project Director of Praja Foundation, while presenting the Annual Report on State of Policing and Law and Order in Mumbai.
The data for the report was collected through Right to Information queries on various parameters, including a study into cases tried at the session’s court level, which has also exposed the chronic failures in the criminal justice system, Mhaske said.
“It currently takes an average 12.3 months for a sessions case to go from first hearing to final judgment. In the 60s, the cases would be adjudicated within a session and took approximately 10 to 15 days,” he said.
The reports show that the conviction rates for Class II serious offences, tried at the sessions court level, was a dismal 7 per cent in 2012. This has climbed to 19 per cent in 2016. Although crimes against women have increased over the years, conviction rate remains low.