Maneka Gandhi to CMs: Train cops dealing with sexual offence cases

Remigio Civitarese
Aprile 20, 2018

Minister for Woman and Child Development Maneka Gandhi has written to all chief ministers asking them to hold special training for police officials dealing with cases of sexual offences, especially where children are victims.

In a cumulative analysis, it revealed a significant increase in crimes against minors of more than 500% over the past 10 years (1,06,958 in 2016 over 18,967 in 2006).

As per a 2016 analysis of crimes under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, sexual offences accounted for 1/3 of all crimes against children in India.

Union Minister Maneka Gandhi today asked states to take strict action against police officers obstructing investigation or colluding with perpetrators in cases of crimes against women and children, and also sought time-bound completion of investigation in such cases. The letter also advised the governments of the states to ensure that strict action is taken against the police officer found guilty of obstructing the probe or colluding with perpetrators of such cases, reports said.

According to one of the steps, all police officers should be re-trained on various aspects of sexual offences particularly those related to collection and preservation of evidence.

A quick and timely professional investigation is the only method in which a potential offender can be deterred but this can be done only by the states as the police department is the state subject.

She informed that till date 175 "One stop centres" have been set up by the ministry to help those women who have no access to either police or medical facilities or unable to visit a police station in times of distress. Section 21 states that any officer who fails to report or record the commission of an offence is liable for punishment. The WCD Minister called for suggestions from the state governments on dealing with crimes against women and children.

An eight-year-old girl from a nomadic group in Jammu and Kashmir was found raped and murdered in January while the body of a nine-year-old girl was found in Gujarat with 86 injury marks.

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