Let’s admit it, a woman is often questioned about her clothes, her company and her lifestyle when the news of an assault comes to light. Even the authorities are often seen pinning it on the survivor, rather than focusing on the perpetrator. In another such shocking incident of victim blaming, a clip of Madhya Pradesh’s Director General of Police VK Singh went viral on Twitter recently. The reason? This senior police officer blamed girls’ independence for an increasing number of kidnapping cases in the state.
The DGP made the statement at a press conference while he was being questioned about the recent rape incidents and rising kidnapping cases in the state.
#WATCH MP DGP,VK Singh,"Ek naya trend IPC 363 ke roop mein dikha hai. Ladkiyaan swatantra zada ho rahi hain,aaj ke samaj mein ladkiyon ki badhti swatantrata ek tathya hai.Aise cases mein increase hua hai jismein wo ghar se chali jati hain aur report hoti hai kidnapping ki" (4Jul) pic.twitter.com/M42uCRquM1
The DGP while referring to the Section 363 of IPC (that deals with kidnapping cases) said, “A new trend has emerged in the form of IPC 363. Girls are getting more independent as they are going to schools and colleges, which is also one of the factors." Well, we are with you if you’re shaking your head in disbelief right now.
He further said, “Their freedom is a fact; their interaction with other boys is also a reality. In such cases, a pattern has come to light where the girls leave home and their parents approach police with a complaint of kidnapping."
Here’s how Twitter is reacting to his statement on the rise in kidnapping cases:
Recently, two rape cases were reported in the state involving two minor girls, aged 8 and 5. So at times like these, when a senior police officer makes a cold statement, does that mean the police is getting desensitised towards the gravity of such crimes?
The numbers and reports sure tell us a scary story. Madhya Pradesh has reported 6,016 cases of kidnapping and abduction of children in 2016, according to the last available data with the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).
Crimes against women and children are on a rise in the country, so it is vital to not let these statements hang in the air. The police should be sensitised thoroughly on how to respond to such crimes and how to be more conscious of the statements they are making in the media. The authorities who react to crimes and work to prevent them cannot endorse such sentiments.