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AAP’s Richa Mishra on Delhi Govt & The Quint’s Anti-Stalking Bill

Aam Aadmi Party’s National Spokesperson Richa Pandey Mishra speaks on the stalking bill.

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The Aam Aadmi Party on Tuesday passed a resolution to make stalking a non-bailable offence. The party picked up The Quint’s and Quint NEON’s #TalkingStalking campaign that brought out real case studies that shed light on the problem of stalking.

The campaign was also aimed at exposing the loopholes in our judiciary that prevents survivors from reporting the crime. Stalking under the IPC in the present scheme of things is a bailable offence. This allows stalkers to get bail without serious scrutiny, thus putting the survivors at risk of facing acid attacks, rape, and even murder.

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Aam Aadmi Party’s National Spokesperson and President of the Delhi Women’s Wing Richa Pandey Mishra garnered support for the campaign within the government and outside it. With her army of women workers, she has been able to create awareness about the issue on the grassroots level as well. Through a door-to-door signature campaign, Mishra and her team have been able to gather over 15,000 signatures.

Our society is suffering from “gender terrorism”. Women are scared to even step out past sunset out of fear. We have to bring about a change in the country’s mindset as well as make our laws stricter to prevent such crimes.
Richa Pandey Mishra, National Spokesperson, AAP
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Why Make Stalking a Non-Bailable Offence?

Able to get bail after being reported by victimised women, stalkers are then at liberty to further stalk, or escalate the stalking to violence, rape, and murder. Many such cases have surfaced in recent times.

Stalking as a separate offence did not exist in the IPC till 2013. This necessarily affects any analysis of the statistics relating to stalking, as the National Crime Records Bureau (“NCRB”) only has statistical data for the years 2014-2016. Despite this, the data available paints an interesting picture of the nature of the crime and the way it is being dealt with in the country.

  • In 2014, nearly 4,700 cases of stalking were reported. This jumped to 6,300 in 2015 – a 33% increase. In 2016, nearly 7,200 cases were reported. Given that awareness about the offence is still nascent and society still tends to view stalking as not too serious an offence, such high numbers, with increases every year, indicate how prevalent the crime really is.
  • Pendency rates for trials are high. In 2016, 13,449 cases were pending trial for stalking, out of which trial was completed in only 1,534 cases i.e. 11.4%. This leaves a huge backlog of trials to be carried forward into the new year.
  • In terms of the number of cases reported each year, only 3% in 2014, 5% in 2015 and 5% in 2016 resulted in convictions. In terms of trials, the conviction rate was 35% in 2014, but dropped to 26% in 2015 and stood at 26.4% in 2016.
  • Importantly, the data indicates a lower-than-normal incidence of false cases. The NCRB’s statistics show that of the 9,800 stalking cases investigated by the police in the year, only 215 were found by them to be false. This comes out to be only 2.1% of all cases investigated in the year – which is below the average percentage of false cases per crimes investigated across the country: 2.5%
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Cameraperson: Abhay Sharma
Editor: Ashish Maccune

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Topics:  Manish Sisodia   Delhi   Indian Penal Code 

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