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UP Police Claims Sharp Decline in Crime Rate; Former Top Cops Term it ‘Fake’

Calling out Yogi government on ‘fake encounters’, critics also pointed out misuse of NSA, including other such Acts, like Cow Slaughter Act and Goonda Act.
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Lucknow: In crime data released recently, the Yogi Adityanath-led Bharatiya Janata Party government in Uttar Pradesh has claimed a decline in incidents, such as dacoity, loot, murder and rape in 2021. However, some former top cops from the state have drilled holes into these claims, alleging a marked rise in fake encounters and misuse of laws, such as NSA, adding that, in fact, serious crimes had risen, especially against women.

“Though the Yogi government claims to have controlled crime in the state through encounters but NCRB (National Crime Records Bureau) data shows otherwise. There has been no reduction in serious crimes such as rape, murder, crime against women. Their claim of reducing crime is completely fake,” former UP inspector general SR Darapuri told NewsClick.

Read Also: UP Govt Admits 37% of ‘Criminals’ Killed in Encounters in 3 Years Were Muslims

Sharing the annual crime data of 2021 with mediapersons, ADG Kumar, in a press note, stated that 26 criminals were gunned down and 763 injured while 3,910 were arrested in 1,698 police encounters this year. As many as 3,032 cases under the Gangsters Act were registered against 9,933 people as a part of stringent action against criminals while properties worth over Rs 1,012 crore were demolished, seized and freed in 651 cases under the Gangsters Act in 2021.

As a precautionary measure, the UP Police have initiated action under the Gangsters Act against 2,998 people, against 191 people under the National Security Act (NSA), and under the Goonda Act against 31,764 people. Besides, 2,284 people were booked for cow slaughter and 8,334 people were booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.

The ADG said a ‘mere’ 72 dacoity incidents were reported in 2021 as compared to 120 such incidents in 2020, a 40% decline. There was a decline of 23% in loot cases with 1,458 loot incidents reported in 2021 in comparison to 1,633 in 2020.

The press note shared by ADG further read that the state witnessed around 11% decline in murder cases. A total of 3,122 murders were reported in 2021 as compared to 3,779 murders in 2020, it said. Similarly,  the police claimed a 17% decline in rape cases d in 2021 (2,289 cases) as compared to 2,769 cases reported in 2020.

There has also been a decrease of 4.4% in all types of cases registered under different sections of the Indian Penal Code across the state, according to the Uttar Pradesh police. In 2021, a total of 3,39,320 cases were reported as compared to 3,55,110 cases registered in 2020.

The ADG said the strict action taken against criminals and gangsters, as well as precautionary measures by police was the major reason for this decline in crime.

Reacting to the UP police’s claims of reduction in crime incidents, Darapuri said:

“Ever since Yogi government came to power, the UP police is working on ‘thok do’ (kill them) policy. Most of the encounters that took place have a question mark on them. After allegations of fake encounters against the Uttar Pradesh police, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) had issued notices to the UP chief secretary and the police chief. The human rights body has also constituted a team to investigate 17 cases. Even the Supreme Court has said the recent encounter killings in UP require “serious consideration” and agreed to examine the details in this regard.”

The former UP police official also pointed out that families of those killed in ‘encounters’ are not even given a chance to complain and are harassed  by the police so that they cannot raise their voices against injustice.

 “There is no place where victim families can approach against police high handedness,” he added.

Uttar Pradesh saw the second-highest number of fake encounter complaints in the country between 2015 and 2018, an RTI query seeking details of fake encounters from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has found.

Read Also: AP Tops List of ‘Fake Encounter’ Killing Complaints, UP is Second

Darapuri also said that NSA was being misused most under the Yogi government, including other such Acts, like Cow Slaughter Act and Goonda Act.

“Between January 2018 and December 2020, the Allahabad High Court ruled in 120 habeas corpus petitions challenging preventive detention under the NSA. In 94 detentions, it quashed orders of DMs in as many as 32 districts and ordered the release of the detainees, Darapuri  said, adding that similarly, the police arrest accused in Cow Slaughter Act without forensic reports on whether the meat recovered was beef or not.”

Lashing out at the state police’s claims, former UP DGP (Director General of Police) Vibhuti Narain Rai, said: “Crime decrease is due to minimisation and concealment. When police will not register case, it is obvious the number of cases will be lower, or if a case of dacoity is registered as a robbery case, the cases will be automatically low. These statistics provided by police are not so true.”

Narain alleged rampant use of NSA against the minorities, adding that “the government’s use of NSA against a specific community is open and wide. Why don’t they use NSA against Yati Narsinghanand which is a fit case to be used? He continuously give hate speeches which breach peace in the society. So the data given by police is dubious.”  He told Newsclick that “hough Haridwar is not in UP, but no NSA was invoked for the‘Dharam Sansad’, which was also a fit case for NSA.”

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