Released on Saturday, the report titled Gender Violence in India gave an overview of gender-related crimes across the country, including a deeper focus on issues such as intimate partner violence, especially among adolescents and gender relations in the IT industry.
Swarna Rajagopalan, political analyst and managing director of Prajnya Trust, said that the report was a sort of a ready reckoner to make sense of the already existing data. “The NCRB information is difficult to access. We wanted to present this in a form that is easily understandable. We started this process in 2009 and have received a positive response. We have also included definition of the crimes and the related legal information,” she said.
The report also focusses on lesser known areas such as intimate partner violence, especially among adolescents. Researcher Radhika Bhalerao, who works in this domain, said that the statistical data for violence caused by intimate partners is extremely scattered and disaggregated.
“The violence in these relationships should be looked as intimate partners and not domestic abuse, which can be done by any member of the family. This abuse goes beyond just marriage and can be taken in the context of adolescent dating or even during the courtship period,” she added.
Cases may be registered under the Protection of women against Domestic Violence Act, 2005 as well as under certain provisions of the Indian Penal Code, 1860. Moreover, violence within dating relationships that is other than marital or live-in relationships, is not covered specifically by any law and hence may be registered under certain provisions of the Indian Penal Code, for example, causing grievous injury.
In 2014, as many as 426 cases were registered under the Protection of Women against Domestic Violence Act, 2005, while the number increased to 461 in 2015. “The laws we have are based on domesticity – dating or adolescent relationships are not included within the purview,” she stated, adding that awareness on sexual health and healthy relationships would be a step in the right direction.
On sexual harassment at the workplace, NCRB data revealed that the number of cases saw a spike between 2014 (526 cases) and 2015 (833 cases).