NCRB report - Increasing crimes in India

  • One in every six missing children from Bengal: NCRB;
  • Delhi prisons at 151% capacity, operating with 50% staff: NCRB;
  • 30% jump in ‘crimes against the state’: NCRB 
  • 8 states account for 67.2% of financial crimes in 2017.

Crime in India (2017): After a gap of two years, the National Crime Records Bureau released its report ‘Crimes in India’ and ‘Prison Statistics’ for the year 2017. Crimes under “offences against the state” 

  • 30% jump in cases recorded as “offences against the State.”
  • The maximum number of these cases were reported from Haryana > Uttar Pradesh >Tamil Nadu.

  • Inclusion of new categories of crime 
    • Included 88 new categories including sexual harassment of women at the workplace/public transport, offences relating to elections, obscene acts at public places, circulation of fake news, chit funds, cases under the Prevention of Corruption Act and Mental Health Act, noise pollution and defacement of public property.
    • A new category called “anti-national elements” has been added which includes details of “jihadi terrorists, Left Wing Extremism and North East insurgents.”
    • For the first time, “cyberstalking and bullying of women” has been included in the report.
    The Story of missing children        
    • 1 in every 6 children go missing in the country is from West Bengal.
    • 16.5% of the total children missing were from West Bengal alone.
    • West Bengal is followed by Madhya Pradesh.
    • The number of children missing recorded in 2017 is marginally higher than what was recorded in 2016, both in the case of West Bengal and the country.
    • According to the report, West Bengal accounts for 12.9% of all missing children in the year 2017.
    Prison Statistics: High-level vacant staff position in an Indian prison
  • Delhi prisons have nearly 50% vacant staff posts at various ranks, much below the national average of 68.8%.
    • The data show that the actual strength of the jail staff is 49.8% of the sanctioned strength in Delhi.
    • The Delhi’s jails are near the top of the list of understaffed prisons in the country.
    • Jharkhand topped the list at 33.5% while Tripura shared the spot with Delhi.
    • Overcrowding in Indian Prisons
    • Among the Union Territories, Delhi has reported the highest overcrowding.
    • Also, Delhi has the second-highest number of undertrial prisoners, including 11,972 Indians and 292 foreigners.
    • The data also show that the Capital has reported the highest number of times the inmates were moved for medical issues.
    • This is followed by Maharashtra and Kerala.

Crimes under the economic offences:

  • Distribution of Economic crimes among the states 
  • The number of economic offences across India rose from 143,524 in 2016 to 148,972 cases in 2017.
  • Eight states, including Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Telangana, West Bengal, Bihar, Karnataka and Assam accounted for more than two-thirds of economic crimes reported in 2017.
  • The bulk of which were cases of forgery, cheating and fraud, according to data released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).
  • Rajasthan and Telangana reported the highest crime rate at 29.2% each
  • The eight states account for 67.2% of all cases reported in 2017, data showed.
  • Union territories, in general, reported fewer cases of economic offences.
  • States with fewer reported cases of economic offences include Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura
  • Delhi, which is classified as a Union territory in the statistics released by the Bureau, reported 3.5% of all cases in 2017.

Cities reporting maximum economic offences 

  • Among 19 cities with more than 2 million population, Bengaluru, Delhi, Jaipur and Mumbai accounted for the highest share of the 29,064 cases of economic offences reported in 2017.
  • These four cities accounted for 58.7% of all economic crimes reported from the 19 cities.
  •  In terms of crime rate, Jaipur had the highest 140.5 cases per 100,000 people. 
  • The total economic offences reported from these cities showed a moderating trend in 2017 from the previous two years.
  •  In 2016, they had reported 30,734 cases under the economic offences
  • It was 32,183 in 2018. The bulk of these offences, too, fall in the categories of forgery, cheating and fraud.
  • NCRB also said that cybercrimes in India almost doubled in 2017
  • The amount involved in the Economic offence
  • Over 91,000 cases resulted in the loss of property
  • The amount involved was less than ₹1 lakh in more than half of these cases. 
  • In 29,500 cases, the amount involved was between ₹1 lakh and ₹10 lakh, and in 21 cases, it was more than ₹100 crore.

Status of cybercrimes in India

  • India recorded 9,622, 11,592 and 12,317 cases of cybercrime in 2014, 2015 and 2016, respectively.
  • Interestingly, cybercrimes accounted for less than 1 percentage (0.43%) or 21,796 cases of a total of about 5 million cognizable crimes in 2017.
  • During 2017, 56% of cyber-crime cases registered were for the motive of fraud (12,213 out of 21,796 cases) followed by sexual exploitation with 6.7% (1,460 cases) and causing disrepute with 4.6% (1,002 cases).
  • The government has taken measures to fortify India’s cyber operations amid growing warnings of malware attacks on personal and organizational devices, intelligence and cyber law experts have said much like crimes against women.
  • However, India suffers from the dismal reporting of the crime.

Problems with the NCRB data

  • Variation in the case registration: The NCRB data on crime hide significant variances in case registration of serious crimes such as rapes and violence against women across States, which make it difficult to draw State-wise comparisons
  • Non-inclusion of Socio-economic factors: The crime in India 2017 document said data was captured at the police station or district level, but the socio-economic causative factors, or reasons of crimes, were not being captured by the NCRB.

Also read: Need For Reforms In India’s Criminal Justice System U.P. Tops In Crimes Against Women, Says NCRB Report