The Office of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Wednesday tweeted that the Uttar Pradesh government has a policy of zero tolerance against crimes and there has been a significant decrease in crimes against women due to the continuous efforts of the government.
However, according to the National Crime Record Bureau’s “Crime in India” 2019 report, Uttar Pradesh recorded the highest number of crimes against women in that year. Out of India’s total tally of 4,05,861 cases in 2019, Uttar Pradesh had 59,853 such incidents.
The 2019 number was slightly up from the year before that. The NCRB’s 2018 report said 59,445 cases of crimes against women were reported in Uttar Pradesh, an increase from 56,011 in 2017, when the state had topped the list again.The Adityanath government has been in power since March 2017.
‘Crimes against women’ includes cruelty shown to the woman by her husband or his relatives, kidnapping, rape and other atrocities.
This claim comes amid protests across the country over the death and alleged forced cremation of a 19-year-old woman in Hathras. The Uttar Pradesh government has come under severe criticism for its handling of the case, with the opposition demanding Adityanath’s resignation and the woman’s family alleging harassment and confinement by local authorities.
According to a press statement, Adityanath on Wednesday directed officials to conduct a special campaign on the safety of women and girls during Navratri festival which begins on 17 October.
He also directed the police to take prompt action in cases involving women and girls and deal with such matters sensitively, PTI reported.
Adityanath said the presence of police helps in controlling crime and that there has been a decrease in crime against girls and women due to efforts of the state government.
Even as the outrage over Hathras continues, several other cases of crimes against women have been reported from the state.
A 22-year-old Dalit woman died in Balrampur district of the state after allegedly being raped by two men. A Dalit girl was allegedly raped by a man in Uttar Pradesh’s Pratapgarh following which the accused was arrested on Tuesday.
The Uttar Pradesh government is also facing questions over the alleged forced cremation of the 19-year-old woman in Hathras after her family claimed that their permission was not taken.
The state government has dismissed reports that the family’s consent was not taken and told the Supreme Court in an affidavit on Tuesday that the woman’s body was cremated at night to avoid law and order problems.
However, the woman’s brother told HuffPost India’s Betwa Sharma last week that neither the authorities nor the police at Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital had informed the family about this when they headed back to Hathras with her body on 29 September.
The government also told the court that there were no signs suggestive of rape. The Uttar Pradesh police has cited a forensic science laboratory (FSL) report to claim that this was not a case of rape. However, experts have raised questions over the report because it is based on samples collected 11 days after the woman was allegedly raped.
Chief Medical Officer of Aligarh Muslim University’s (AMU’s) Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College also told The Indian Express that the report “holds no value”.
(With PTI inputs)