India witnesses steep rise in crime against women amid Covid-19 lockdown
There has been a steep rise in crime against women across the country amid restrictions imposed due to the coronavirus outbreak, with the National Commission for Women (NCW) receiving 587 complaints from March 23 to April 16, out of which 239 are related to domestic violence.
According to data shared by the NCW, 123 cases of domestic violence were received between February 27 and March 22. In the last 25 days, the commission received 239 more such complaints.
NCW Chairperson Rekha Sharma earlier said that the high number can be attributed to the lockdown imposed due to the coronavirus outbreak which has locked the abuser and the victim together.
The nationwide lockdown was declared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24 to control the spread of coronavirus.
From February 27 to March 22, a total of 396 offences related to women were reported to the NCW, while from March 23 to April 16, as many as 587 such complaints were received, according to the data.
The highest number of complaints were related to domestic violence. The NCW had launched a WhatsApp number -- 72177135372 -- on April 10 to report domestic violence on an emergency basis during the lockdown.
The commission constituted a special team to handle these complaints on a fast track basis.
Since the launch of this dedicated WhatsApp number, a total of 40 messages were received reporting domestic violence, the data showed.
The NCW, in a statement, said these messages are first scrutinised and those related to domestic violence amid the lockdown are taken up on priority and to provide immediate security to aggrieved women with the help of state police and administration.