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More women needed

According to the latest figures released by the Indian Home Ministry, out of the 15,85,117 personnel working in state police forces, only 84,479 or just 5.33% are women.  Besides there are only 499 all-women police stations out of a total of 15,000 stations in the country. The figures are absurd and call for an analysis. Is meagre representation of women in the forces, leading to a rise in crimes against women?

Every other day in India, we wake up with the news of a girl being raped or molested. Statistics too say that crimes against women have increased by 7.1 percent nationwide since 2010. More than half of the victims are between 18 and 30 years of age. Alarmingly, in almost 94.2 percent of cases the offenders are known to the victims, mostly some relative or a neighbour of the victim or someone with a political background. A total of 2, 28,650 incidents of crimes against women were reported in the country during 2011.

And it is just not only rape that is included among rising crimes against women. From abduction to homicide for dowry, the figures are always rising. Kidnapping and abductions are up by 19 percent and trafficking has risen by 122 percent in the last year. Eve teasers are always on the pry to get their catch openly in the busy streets of the cities. In such situations, there is a great need of women police officers in civil clothing.

While some say that there is an evident glass ceiling in the police forces, others say women lack interest in legal affairs. When women have shown their excellence in all fields why should they be restricted or given a back seat in policing matters? Some male chauvinists claim that women are physically not fit to apply for the forces and hence remain behind. I admit, we are physically vulnerable but psychologically we are much stronger than our male counterparts. One needs to remove the glass ceilings and gender bias and encourage more and more women to join judicial forces. If women are encouraged to take up police jobs in all levels of the ladder, then crimes against women might really come to a stop.

Many rapes and molestations and domestic violence cases go unreported in police stations due to the unhealthy behaviour of the police officials. The way they deal with a rape victim makes her feel as though she is being raped all over again. To top it over, some even go to the extent to settle the case with money and forget about reports!

Most psychologists say a woman understands the pain of a woman and can bear with her more patiently and genuinely. With the surge in crimes against women, it is time that the Indian government take up some steady steps to protect its daughters by enrolling daughters in the judicial system. We should never forget that the hand that rocks the cradle also has the power to rule the world!

Author: Debarati Mukherjee

Editor: Manasi Gopalakrishnan


21.05.2013 | 9:50