Rape, murder cases up

Kathmandu, August 19

If statistics released by Metropolitan Police Office are any indication, heinous crimes like murder and rape are on an upward spiral in Kathmandu Valley.

Though the overall crime rate has shown a downward trend, murder and rape show no sign of deceasing. Overall crimes registered in the fiscal 2016-17 were 5,924 against 6,244 the previous fiscal.

While 42 murder cases were reported in the fiscal 2015-16, it swelled to 56 last fiscal, registering nearly 14 per cent rise. Similarly, cases of attempt to murder increased to 107 in 2016-17 from 90 in 2015-16. “Most of the murder victims and perpetrators were daily wage-earners and labourers. Animosity, monetary greed, and dispute over mutual distrust were the leading cause behind murders reported in the Valley,” read the statistics.

According to MPO, police succeeded in bringing to book the perpetrators in 50 murder cases last fiscal. Investigating officials arrested at least 73 suspects in connection with the murders. The majority of alleged murderers (55) were aged between 16 and 35 years while two were below the age of 16, 10 between 36 and 14 and six others above 46 years.

Rape cases are on an upsurge in the Valley, making it a dangerous place for women and girls. The Valley handled 156 rape cases in 2016-17 compared to 135 last fiscal. Police officials conceded that cases of rape and sexual violence had increased not only in the Valley but also in other parts of the country despite remarkable decrease in other crimes like use and smuggling of arms, organised crimes, social crimes, thefts, frauds and forgery.

Police attribute the increase in rape to more women coming forward due to greater public awareness but say that many more cases go unreported, as women are often too scared to come forward to lodge complaints of rape.  “The increase in rape cases means an increased public awareness and improved reporting. Prompt crime investigation and increasing public trust in police have made rape victims come forward with complaints against the perpetrators,” the statistics reported.

In some cases, men and women have consensual sex, and the alleged victim files a rape complaint against the man with police when their relationship turns sour, and all suspects of rape were put on trial, police said.