QCrime: Delhi Sees Max Crimes Against Women; Avni Case Reopened
Top crime news stories from across India.
1. Delhi Sees Maximum Cases of Crime Against Women, Again: NCRB
The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data for 2018 ranks Delhi as the metropolitan city with the highest number of crimes against women, yet again.
In 2018, 13,640 cases were registered on complaints made by women in the city. Not only is the number of crimes the highest in capital, pending cases are also high and outnumber the number of cases in 2018. Over 18,198 cases have been pending since 2017. These include rape, harassment, stalking, acid attack, cruelty by husband or relatives etc. In Mumbai, the number of pending cases is 7,663.
According to senior police officials and women safety experts, high reportage of cases of crime against women is to be encouraged, as it means that more people are willing to lodge complaints in such cases, where there is a lot of stigma against reportage.
2. 13 Months After Tigress Avni’s Killing, Maharashtra Government Reopens Probe
The Uddhav Thackeray-led state government has reopened investigations into the killing of tigress T1 or Avni by independent hunters appointed by the state forest department. The move comes after wildlife conservationist Jerryl Banait on Wednesday, 8 January, submitted a letter to the state government and met chief minister (CM) Thackeray and state environment minister Aaditya Thackeray, highlighting inconsistencies in the events leading up to Avni’s killing.
On 2 November 2018, Avni was shot dead in Yavatmal by Asghar Ali Khan, son of independent hunter Nawab Shafath Ali Khan, who had been hired by the forest department. Avni had allegedly killed 13 people since June 2016, forcing the forest department to initiate a hunt for her.
However, according to a state-appointed committee, DNA analysis could only confirm the deaths of six people directly due to Avni. Despite numerous unanswered questions, the Forest Development Corporation of Maharashtra absolved the hunters and closed the case in February 2019.
3. Two Convicts in Delhi Gang-Rape Case File Curative Pleas
Placing reliance on collective conscience of society to send a person to gallows is erroneous and has not found favour with the top court in earlier instances, one of the convicts in the 2012 Delhi gang rape case, Vinay Sharma stated in his curative petition before the Supreme Court, challenging the May 2017 judgment of the court which had upheld his conviction and death sentence.
“Judgment places erroneous reliance on the collective conscience of the society…However, clear case of law before and after the impugned judgment exists which finds such reliance erroneous,” the petition said.
Later on Thursday, Mukesh Singh, a co-convict, also moved a curative petition through his lawyer.
A Delhi court had on 7 January issued a death warrant against four convicts in the 2012 case — Mukesh Singh, Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma and Akshay Singh. They are scheduled to be executed on 22 January at 7 am in the Tihar jail premises.
4. Delhi Teen Who Ran Over Exec With Dad’s Car Won’t Be Tried as Adult: Supreme Court
The 17-year, 361-day old young man, behind the wheel of his father’s speeding Mercedes Benz, who hit and killed marketing professional Siddharth Sharma, 32 on 4 April 2016, will not go to jail for his crime with the Supreme Court ruling on Thursday that the act of the accused, a juvenile at the time of the commission of the offence, does not fall within the category of “heinous offences” under the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 (JJ Act).
Under the act, only juveniles committing heinous crimes will be tried as adults.
Shilpa Sharma, the sister of Siddharth Sharma, said that she is devastated by the ruling but will continue her fight for justice.
“The judges said that there is a flaw in the law, but decided to not make the changes and directed the legislators to make the changes. They had the power to change it but they chose not to,” said Sharma (38), a resident of Civil Lines.
5. Key Suspect in Gauri Lankesh Murder Held in Jharkhand
A key suspect in the 5 September 2017 murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh in Bengaluru was arrested by a Special Investigation Team of the Karnataka police in Jharkhand’s Dhanbad district on Thursday.
Rushikesh Deodikar alias Murali, 44, who is linked to the radical outfit Sanatan Sanstha and its affiliate Hindu Janajagruti Samiti, is named as accused number 18 in a chargesheet filed by the SIT in November 2018 in connection with the murder.
Deodikar is among the 18 persons named in the Gauri Lankesh murder case to be arrested by the SIT. He is alleged to have been one of the key plotters who provided resources to carry out the murder, including training and guns for the assassins.
“He was arrested in Katras, Dhanbad district, Jharkhand. His house is being searched for clues. He will be produced before the jurisdictional magistrate tomorrow,” said a statement issued by an SIT official.
6. Chandigarh: SUV Runs Over 2-Year-Old Girl, Driver Arrested
A two-year-old girl was crushed under the wheels of a Scorpio near Darshani Bagh at Manimajra on Thursday, 9 January. The victim was identified as Gori. Police arrested the Scorpio driver, Pankaj Kumar, of Sector 4 in Panchkula. The accident was captured on a CCTV camera installed at a house.
The incident occurred around 11 am. The CCTV footage shows the girl appeared on the scene and silently sat behind the Scorpio, which was parked on the roadside. In the meantime, driver Pankaj, who had entered the Scorpio a few moments before the girl arrived on the road, started the four-wheeler and reversed it, crushing the girl on the spot.
The footage shows the front right-side wheel of four-wheeler crushed the girl. The Scorpio driver left the spot. One of his friends too was sitting in the vehicle.
7. 3 Terror Suspects Nabbed After Shootout: Delhi Police
Delhi Police Thursday arrested three men for allegedly planning terror strikes in Delhi-NCR. Police claimed the accused have links to ISIS and were also booked by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in 2018 for terror-based activities.
Delhi Police’s Special Cell nabbed the men after an exchange of fire in North Delhi’s Wazirabad early Thursday. The suspects hail from Tamil Nadu, said police. “Two accused were involved in the infamous murder case of K P Suresh Kumar, leader of the Hindu Munnani group from Chennai in 2014,” said a senior police officer.
A police statement said the two accused were arrested in 2014 with four other men, and were part of Al Ummah, a terrorist organisation. A senior police officer said, “After the murder of K P Suresh in June 2014, over six men were caught from Chennai. They were part of a terror group which receives funds and assists people to join ISIS in Syria.
8. Train Runs Over Maharashtra Woman Walking On Rail Track With Earphones On
A 28-year-old woman walking along a rail track with her earphones plugged in died after being hit by a speeding local train near Kalyan station in Thane, Maharashtra, the railway police said.
The incident took place on Wednesday when Antudevi Dubey, a resident of Lok Udyan complex in Kalyan township, was heading to her college, an official said.
"She was walking along the railway track when she was knocked down by a speeding local train at Sanglewadi near Kalyan railway station. She was wearing earphones at that time," the official said.
9. Man Posing As UP Minister Arrested After Goa Chief Minister Alerts Cops
Goa Police have arrested a man for allegedly posing as a minister from Uttar Pradesh by submitting fake documents and staying at a state guest house in Panaji for over 10 days.
Four of his accomplices, who were staying with him at the state guest house, have also been arrested, a senior Goa Crime Branch official said on Thursday.
The accused, Sunil Singh, was arrested after Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant alerted the police about him.
Singh stayed at the state guest house for almost 12 days before being caught on Tuesday. He had even sought an appointment with the chief minister, the official said. "As he had shown his designation as Minister of Cooperation from the Uttar Pradesh government, he was also provided a personal security officer from the Goa Police," the
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