In a shocking disclosure, Y S Dadwal, the Police Commissioner of New Delhi, India's Capital city, has said that in 98 per cent of cases of rape, the accused could be someone known to the victim. "The accused could be someone who had been interacting with the victims in normal course of life," he told journalists on Wednesday while discussing the crime scene in the Capital.
The rapist could be a friend, relative, neighbour or an acquaintance. Incidentally, in Delhi rapes constituted 98 per cent of the crime committed during 2007 and only 10 per cent of the accused were strangers in these instances. In actual figures, it worked out to 581 rapes in the Capital last year compared to 609 that were committed during 2006.
Explaining the findings of the police investigations into rapes, the top police officer said that neighbours of the victims committed a whopping 59 per cent of the rapes reported in the Metropolis. While 16 per cent of the rapists were found to be either a friend or a lover of the victim, six per cent of rapes involved landlords or tenants. Employers or colleagues at workplace accounted for three per cent of rapes.
The police also found that in 11 per cent of the rapes committed in 2007, the accused had preyed upon their victims before striking. Family members including father or the stepfather (three per cent), brother or cousin (two per cent), ex-husband or husband (two per cent), uncle (two per cent) and in-laws (two per cent) also figured in the list of accused.
"While there has been a 4.6 per cent decline in the number of rape cases registered in the city, the working out ratio of rape cases has gone up to 95.18 per cent in 2007 as compared to 93.92 per cent in 2006," Commissioner Dadwal admitted.
"As many as, 64 victims were raped in houses, five per cent in slums and 31 per cent in other places," he explained.
According to him, a study of the education profile of the accused revealed that 68 per cent were illiterate or school dropouts, 24 per cent have studied up to class X and 1.9 per cent graduates. Not surprisingly 80.1 per cent of the accused belonged to the economically weaker sections in the society.