NCW wants CBI probe in Kerala rape case

Crimes against women have risen by 400 percent in Kerala in the past four years, says NCW chairperson

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Puja Bhattacharjee | May 7, 2016 | New Delhi


#Lalitha Kumaramangalam   #CBI   #NCW   #Kerala rape  


The national commission for women (NCW) will ask the centre to hand over the investigation of the brutal assault, suspected to be a sexual assault, and murder of a 30-year-old woman in Kerala to the CBI. “The crime scene was heavily compromised when we visited,” NCW chairperson Lalitha Kumaramangalam said. 

The Dalit woman was allegedly raped on April 28 inside her house in Perumbavoor in Ernakulam district of Kerala. The incident has resulted in a huge outrage in Kerala. The assault bears a resemblance to the December 16, 2012 rape case in Delhi. It has been 10 days since the incident yet no arrests have been made by the police, though several people have been detained. 
 
“Crimes against women have risen by 400 percent in the last four years in the state,” she said, at a press conference in New Delhi on Friday.
 
On their visit to the hospital, the commission found that the victim’s mother Rajeshwari was not given any kind of counselling to deal with the trauma. “She was being kept sedated all the time,” said Kumaramangalam. Moreover, Rajeshwari’s neighbours were uncooperative and did little to help. “The neighbours heard some noises from the victim’s house on the day of the murder. But nobody intervened. They thought it was a family squabble,” she added. Initially, the neighbours even refused to speak to the police.
 
Kumaramangalam also highlighted that the post-mortem of the victim’s body was a botched affair. She said that a student conducted the post-mortem while an associate professor supervised. “The incident was looked at more as a case study than a serious crime. The whole system of our country is misogynistic to the core,” she said.
 
At present, the assembly elections are underway in Kerala and the state machinery is busy with election duties. NCW is planning to approach the election commission of India (ECI) and request them to relieve some police personnel from the election duties. “This is an urgent matter and has to be thoroughly investigated. We are going to meet them as soon as they give us an appointment,” she added.
 
Kumaramangalam also said that the NCW in collaboration with the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPR&D) has been conducting a training course for women police officers since January. “We want to train women officers to deal with sensitive cases. Two training workshops have been conducted in Chandigarh and Delhi. The third workshop will be held in Bangalore towards the end of May. So far 167 women police officers have been trained,” she said.
 

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