Crimes against members of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes communities increased by 7.3% and 26.5% respectively in 2019, according to the latest “Crime in India” 2019 report by the National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) which was released on Tuesday. A total of 45,935 cases of crime or atrocities against Dalits and a total of 8,257 cases of crime against tribal people were recorded in the last year.
Uttar Pradesh has the most number of cases of crime against SCs – 11,829 cases, which is 25.8% of the total such cases in the country. It is followed by Rajasthan with 6,794 cases (14.8% of all cases), Bihar (14.2%) and Madhya Pradesh (11.5%).
At 23.2%, Madhya Pradesh had the highest share of crimes against STs. It was followed by Rajasthan (21.8% of all cases) and Uttar Pradesh (8.7%).
According to a report, cases of atrocities against Dalits and Adivasis recorded under Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 (PoA Act) have increased by 281.75% and 575.33%, respectively between 2009 and 2018.
The manner of implementation of the PoA Act has been a major concern among Adivasis and Dalit communities. Accroding to a status report on the implementation of PoA Act, released by National Dalit Movement for Justice (NDMJ), over the decade prior to 2018, the average conviction rate under PoA Act for cases of atrocities against dalits and adivasis remained at 25.2% and 22.8% respectively.
In a worrying trend, a total of 3,375 cases of assault against women (both adults and children) from SC communities with an intent to outrage modesty have been registered under PoA Act.
Rajasthan had the highest number of rapes against Dalit women (554), followed by Uttar Pradesh (537) and Madhya Pradesh (510).
The report stated: “A total of 51,56,172 cognisable crimes comprising 32,25,701 Indian Penal Code (IPC) crimes and 19,30,471 Special & Local Laws (SLL) crimes were registered in 2019. It shows an increase of 1.6% in registration of cases over 2018 (50,74,635 cases). Crime rate registered per lakh population has increased marginally from 383.5 in 2018 to 385.5 in 2019.”