Published: 30th November 2017
Stalking cases reported in all South Indian metros only one-fifth of Delhi's tally
Sexual harassment, stalking cases in the capital (and North India) outnumbered the cases in all the major South Indian cities put together
Here's a scary fact if you're living in Delhi and a heartening one if you're in any South Indian metro: The number of stalking cases recorded in the Indian capital was 5 times the number of cases recorded in all the South Indian metros put together — Chennai, Kochi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad. In addition to rape and wanton crime, this is the latest of the ungainly sobriquets that the capital has gained.
According to the Crime in India Report 2016, released by the NCRB on Thursday, Delhi recorded 671 cases of stalking under IPC 354D, which accounted for the lion's share of India's tally of 1642 cases. In contrast, there were only 45 cases recorded in Bengaluru, 74 cases recorded in Hyderabad, 10 cases in Chennai and none in Kochi.
"Most cases of stalking are settled at the police stations and the FIR is rarely filed. It is only in recent times that women have insisted that these cases be filed and have seen it through. There are far fewer cases here in the South because women lawyers and All Women Police Stations have acted on these complaints swiftly and that has kept a lot of abusers and stalkers in check," said lawyer and women's rights activist Vandhana G.
Low count: While Delhi led the charts in 2016, Mumbai came a close second
Stalking is defined as a man following a woman and contacts or attempts to contact a woman to foster personal interaction repeatedly despite a clear indication of disinterest by the woman. It also indicts any man who monitors the use by a woman of the internet, email or any other form of electronic communication, without her consent.
It doesn't end there. The number of sexual harassment cases, both in the workplace and domestic, were considerably lower in South India when compared to Delhi. All the South Indian metros put together tallied 482 cases of Sexual Harassment (IPC 354A), which was still well below Delhi's clear and immense total of 742 cases. Mumbai came in a close second with a tally of 675 cases of sexual harassment.
Recently, there has been a slew of sexual harassment complaints in universities across India, with plenty of professors being accused of sexual harassment.