Will Be Our Pleasure To Shoot Or Hang Rapists: Delhi Police Chief BS Bassi

05/01/2016 10:08 AM IST | Updated 28/09/2016 5:13 PM IST
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NEW DELHI, INDIA - JULY 24: Delhi Police Commissioner BS Bassi during an interview at the PHQ on July 24, 2015 in New Delhi, India. Amid his ongoing tussle with the Arvind Kejriwal dispensation, Bassi made strong assertion that Delhi Police must function Centre's jurisdiction and it will be very unfortunate for the city if it comes under the Delhi government. (Photo by Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

New Delhi--Almost resenting the fact that there is no such provision in the country's law, Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi today said the force would not be hesitant to shoot or hang criminals like rapists if the Constitution permitted the police to.

Speaking on a range of issues at Delhi Police's annual press conference, Bassi who is set to retire next month, also said it was good fortune of Delhiites that the force was under the Centre and not the city government.

Rolling out statistics relating to crime and criminals, Bassi said registration of cases went up by around 24 per cent in 2015 compared to 2014 and that police was doing everything possible to ensure safety and security of the people with particular focus on women and children.

"It will be our pleasure to shoot or hang (the) perpetrators of crime against women if the Constitution of India permits us," said Bassi, who is at helm of Delhi Police since July 2013.

He said, "crime-mapping analysis" of the city suggested that if there was a woman in a locality is surrounded by anything between 250-400 men, some of the latter would not think twice before assaulting her.

"They have no respect even for their own mothers and sisters and look at women like they do in a porn movie. They see (even) a two-month-old baby or an 80-year-old woman as targets."

Bassi also announced that 1,000 traffic police personnel will be given guns in view of rising instances of attacks on traffic wing of the force. Currently, traffic policemen are not armed.

Giving statistics, Bassi said as many as 1,82,644 cases under the Indian Penal Code were reported in 2015 as compared to 1,47,237 in the previous year. While cases of murder dropped by 3.91 per cent, rapes and molestation cases increased by 0.48 and 24.15 per cent respectively.

Bassi said 70 per cent of the perpetrators in rape cases belong to the age group 21-35 years.

He also said that women need to be trained in self- defence, which can help in tackling the steep rise in instances of crime against women.

"Analysis also suggests that 60-65 per cent of women victims are between 15-30 years old. Their self-defence expertise shall be a sure counter to sick mindset men," Bassi said.

"I have often been criticised for my views on self- defence, mostly by groups who know how to shed crocodile tears," he said.

Police records revealed that 2095 cases of rape, 5192 molestation and 1444 cases of eve-teasing were reported till December 15, 2015, compared to 2085 rapes, 4182 molestation and 1282 eve-teasing cases in the corresponding period previous year.

Records further revealed, almost 39 per cent of the rapes were committed by friends and family members' friends.

While nearly 16.50 per cent rapes were committed by neighbours of the victims and around 14 per cent by relatives, around 2 percent of the offenders were co-workers and 25 per cent cases pertained to other known persons.

While 86.73 per cent of rape cases took place inside houses, 3.29 per cent took place inside "hotels and restaurants".

Similarly, while 39 per cent of molestation cases were reported to have happened inside houses, closely followed by 39.25 on roads, around 4 per cent cases happened in malls, markets and shopping complexes.

Bassi also said that guns will be given to 1,000 traffic officials in the city in view of rising instances of attacks on traffic personnel and for handling of emergencies in the national capital.

He expressed regret over the "slow expansion" of women cab service in the city, and exhorted his younger colleagues to take up the challenge of bringing greater number of woman drivers under the ambit of the empowerment scheme.

Bassi who has been at loggerheads with the AAP government in the past, said that his force enjoyed "fair autonomy" in its operation and bringing it under the Delhi government meant it would have to "give in to local pressure".

"I can tell you that people of Delhi are fortunate to have the police not under the Delhi government...otherwise there would be a lot of local pressure," he said.

"A Prime Minister will not have local influence, a Home Minister will not have local influence, but if the Delhi Police comes under the local government, then the Chief Minister would have local influence," Bassi claimed.

The police chief, however, did not make any direct reference to the Arvind Kejriwal-led government, with which the Delhi Police has been engaged in a tug-of-war of sorts in past several months over its functioning.

A number of rape incidents in the national capital last year had triggered a flash point between the AAP government fronted by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and the Delhi Police led by Bassi.

The AAP government had in fact, upped the ante and even proposed putting Delhi Police under its jurisdiction for a year, on a trial basis, prompting quick rebuttal from Bassi.

In his strongest assertion, the police commissioner had said it would be a "very unfortunate" day in the history of the capital if the Delhi Police comes under the city government and that its functioning under the Centre's jurisdiction was "perfect".

"The present system is the best. No Prime Minister has any vested interest in Delhi unless he belongs to Delhi. I have not seen any PM having any local interest in Delhi during my long career. Even if there is a pressure from the Centre, we (Delhi Police) are able to deflect it, as they have no local interest, but if it comes from a chief minister, then it would become difficult," he had said.

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