THD NewsDesk, New Delhi: The steadiness in the rape cases reported every day shows that pandemic or not, India will never be able to curb rapes. Although there was a very slight fall in the number of cases due to the lockdown, it has slowly risen as the lockdown has been lifted almost entirely in most states.
According to Delhi police data, this year witnessed more than five women being raped per day in Delhi itself.
|Crime head||2019||2019 (up to 31 July)||2020 (up to 31 July)|
|Rape (376 IPC)||2168||1299||800|
|Assault on women (354 IPC)||2921||1734||1023|
|Cruelty by husband/in-laws (498-A/406 IPC)||3792||2111||1050|
Source: Crime Report, Delhi Police
There has been added a new pretext for the continuation of rapes: COVID Care Centers. Fresh news of rapes taking place with COVID-19 patients in different COVID Care Centers across the country has been pouring in since the initial stages of the pandemic itself.
On April 16 in Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan, a daily wage earner who was returning to her village lost her way and took shelter at a police station. The police placed her at a school where four men raped her. According to the DSP of Sawai Madhopur and investigating officer, Parth Sharma,
“Three local men who raped the woman inside the school on Apr. 23 have been arrested and sent to jail,”
On July 22nd in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, a 28- year- old COVID positive patient was brought in to the DDU Hospital. A doctor not on duty entered her ward and attempted to rape her twice during the night. Later he got arrested. As per the District Magistrate of Aligarh, Chandra Bhushan Singh,
“Molestation and rape attempts have been made. Police have probed the case and the incident has been found to be true. An FIR has been filed and the doctor has been arrested,”
In another such incident, on 16th July in Patna, Bihar, a 15-year-old girl was raped by a security guard at the Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) who had been rescued from the railway station. The rapist was arrested the same day under the POCSO Act by the Pirbahore Police Station.
Arti Jaiswal, the in-charge of the women’s police station, said,
“The accused is being sent to jail while the victim will be undergoing medical tests on Thursday (17 July), as is the norm for all sexual assault survivors.”
A 14-year-old girl was raped at India’s biggest COVID care center, Sardar Patel COVID center, New Delhi on 15th July. The police officer investigating the case said,
“The youth started chatting casually with the girl near the bathroom late at night on July 15. He asked his 20-year-old friend to stand guard to warn him in case someone came to that side while he was committing the crime. After the traumatic experience, the girl quietly went to sleep. Later, she discussed the incident with some friends, who informed the doctors at the center. Police were called after the matter came to the notice of the management.”
These cases paint a scary picture of negligence and lack of humanity in those who are supposed to take care of the public. There should be in place stricter regulations regarding engagements between doctors and patients, only then can such cases diminish.