S.R DARAPURI | 8 OCTOBER, 2020
Dominant caste atrocities in UP occur at many times the national rate
The National Crime Records Bureau recently released its Crime in India 2019 report. In terms of dominant castes perpetrating atrocities on Scheduled Castes it emerges that Uttar Pradesh is far ahead of the rest of the country. According to the report, nearly 46,000 crimes of caste atrocities were recorded last year of which nearly 12,000 were recorded in Uttar Pradesh, or 25.8% of the total whereas only 20.7% of Indians from a Schedule Caste live in the state. The rate of crime perpetrated per one lakh Dalits was 22.8 at the national level and 28.6 in Uttar Pradesh, which means the rate in UP is 25% higher than the national average.
It is also noteworthy that this is much higher than the national rate of 20.3 in 2016. Clearly, even according to official figures, Dalits especially Dalit Women are not safe in Uttar Pradesh. Analysis of these dominant caste crimes by category reveals the following.
Crimes under the SC/ST Atrocities Prevention Act (including IPC): In the year 2019, 41,793 crimes under this Act took place in the entire country whereas 9,451 crimes occurred in Uttar Pradesh alone. The national rate of these crimes (per 1 lakh population) was 20.8 while in Uttar Pradesh the rate was 22.9. This crime is about 22.6% of the total crime at the national level. Thus at the national level, Uttar Pradesh ranks sixth in the case of these crimes, which is quite high.
Murder: In the year 2019, the number of murders of Dalits in the whole country was 923 of which 219 murders took place in Uttar Pradesh alone. In contrast to the national rate of 0.4, Uttar Pradesh has a rate of 0.5 and the total crime is about 24% of the total crime at the national level. Uttar Pradesh is ranked fourth nationally.
Attack on women with intent to outrage their modesty: 3,375 cases of this crime were recorded in the entire country whereas in Uttar Pradesh alone, 776 cases occurred which is 23% of the total crime committed at the national level. The national rate of this crime was 1.7 while that of Uttar Pradesh was 1.9, that is 11% higher than the national rate.
Attack with intent to harass women (Section 354A): Under this, 976 crimes occurred in the whole country whereas in Uttar Pradesh alone there were 226 cases which is 23% of the total crime. The national rate of this crime was 0.3 while that of Uttar Pradesh was 0.5, which is two-thirds higher than the national rate.
Assault with intent to disrobe Dalit women (Section 354B): Under this title 266 crimes occurred in the whole country whereas in Uttar Pradesh alone there were 104 cases which constituted 39% of the total crime of India. The national rate of this crime was 0.1 while that of Uttar Pradesh was 0.3, which is three times the national rate.
Women kidnapping and Abduction (363–369 IPC): 916 crimes occurred in the entire country under this title, while in Uttar Pradesh alone there were 449 cases which is 49% of the total crime in the country. The national rate of this crime was 0.5 while that of Uttar Pradesh was 1.1, or more than twice the national rate.
Kidnapping women (Section 363): 392 crimes occurred in the entire country while in Uttar Pradesh alone there were 196 cases which is 49.5% of the total crime in the country. The national rate of this crime was 0.2 while that of Uttar Pradesh was 0.5, which is more than twice the national rate.
Other kidnappings: Under this title, 313 crimes occurred in the entire country, while there were 176 cases in Uttar Pradesh alone, which is 56% of the total crime in the country. The national rate of this crime was 0.2 while that of Uttar Pradesh was 0.4, which is twice the national rate.
Kidnapping of Women for Marriage (366 IPC): In the year 2019, a total of 357 cases of kidnapping for marriage occurred in the country, out of which 243 crimes occurred in Uttar Pradesh alone which is 68% of the total crime in the country. In contrast to the national rate of 0.2 of this crime, Uttar Pradesh has a rate of 0.6, which is the highest in the whole country and three times the national rate.
Rape (376 IPC): 3,486 crimes of rape of Dalit women by men were recorded across the country, out of which 537 rape cases were registered in Uttar Pradesh alone, which is 15.4% of the total crime at the national level. Although the rate of this crime is 1.3 as opposed to the national rate of 1.7, it is well known how difficult it is to get the police to register a case of rape against dominant castes as is evident from the recent Hathras crime. Therefore, many rape cases are either not written or they are recorded in other sections which carry less punishment.
Court conviction rate: The rate for Uttar Pradesh was 66.1% as opposed to 32.1% at national level and it stood second nationally. Although this rate can be said to be much better than Gujarat's rate of 1.8%, the rate of pending cases for investigation (50,776) by the end of the year is 95.4% which is higher than the national rate of 93.8%, tarnishing this achievement.
It is clear from the above analysis that the incidence and rate of total crime against Dalits in Uttar Pradesh in the year 2019 is much higher than the national rate. In this, the rate of serious crimes against Dalits such as murder, outrage of modesty / attempted, sexual harassment, rape, kidnapping and kidnapping for marriage, and crimes under SC / ST Act was much higher than the national rate.
One thing has emerged from these figures that in Uttar Pradesh, the number and rate of crimes against Dalit women such as rape, kidnapping, sexual harassment and kidnapping for marriage etc. are much higher than the national rate. It is clear from it that Dalit women are not safe in the BJP government of Uttar Pradesh.
It has been seen that the atrocities on Dalits have always been higher than the national rate in Uttar Pradesh, irrespective of the government. One of the main reasons for this is that the social, political and economic structure of Uttar Pradesh has been feudal in which it is natural to persecute these sections. For this reason the administrative machinery here has also been feudal, which always remains the slave of the rulers.
Even after independence, the social, political and economic system of Uttar Pradesh has not been democratised. On the contrary, the investment of capital in the process of development after independence has given birth to a new mafia which has strengthened its hold in political power by alliances with feudal forces.
It is well known that feudal–mafia–money alliances are present in all political parties and they also change the party as per the need. That is why even after change of the government, their political grip or reach is not weakened. These elements are responsible for most of the atrocities by dominant castes on Dalits, by men on women and other weaker sections of society.
It is also a tragedy of Uttar Pradesh that there has been no resistance movement at the grassroots level against the feudal-mafia-money nexusdue to which these elements have not been challenged.
The Dalit politics of Uttar Pradesh has also been enjoying power with the help of this feudal–money–mafia nexus, due to which the power of these elements has never been weakened. The continuous hold of feudal, mafia, money men on the politics of Uttar Pradesh, which has become stronger due to the dictatorial character of the BJP government, is responsible for increased atrocities being perpetrated on Dalits at the national level.
Therefore, to stop the atrocities on Dalits in Uttar Pradesh, democratic movements have to be intensified to break the hold of the feudal-mafia-money nexus on politics. Only the Left democratic forces can do this work, not the Congress, Samajwadi, Bhim Army or Bahujan Samaj Party and their leaders who indulge in the politics of power alone.
Cover Photograph Reuters
S.R Darapuri is retired from the Indian Police Service.