According to government data released on Thursday, one woman reported a rape every 15 minutes on average in India in 2018, which is showed to be one of the worst places for women.
On December 16, 2012, six men in Delhi had brutally gang-raped a young woman, later named ‘Nirbhaya’, in a moving bus. The victim succumbed to her injuries two weeks later and six accused were apprehended by the police. This case brought thousands to protest across India and called for action. However, crimes against women continue to increase.
Women reported almost 34,000 rapes in 2018 which showed not much change from the year before. Just over 85% led to charges, and 27% to convictions, according to the annual crime report released by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
“The country is still run by men, one (female prime minister) Indira Gandhi is not going to change things. Most judges are still men,” said Lalitha Kumaramangalam, former chief of the National Commission for Women.
“There are very few forensic labs in the country, and fast-track courts have very few judges,” said Kumaramangalam, a member of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
The rape of a minor in 2017 by former BJP state legislator Kuldeep Singh Sengar also gained attention when the accuser tried to kill herself.
A 2015 study by the Centre for Law and Policy Research in Bengaluru found that fast-track courts were quicker but were unable to not handle too many cases.
And a study in 2016 by Partners for Law in Development in New Delhi found that they still took an average of 8.5 months per case – more than four times the recommended period.
The government statistics are not the accurate representation of rape cases as it is still considered a stigma to report rape in some parts of India.