Cops alerted but failed to track vehicle on road

NEW DELHI: From 2005 to 2010, Delhi has aspired to evolve as a world-class cosmopolitan city where women feel safe. But, in the five years from the 2005 gangrape in Dhaula Kuan to the Tuesday night incident in which a 30-year-old BPO staffer from Manipur was picked up from the same spot by four men and gangraped in a moving vehicle nothing seems to have changed.

Delhi still remains the `rape capital' of the country. And ineffective police patrolling has only added to the woes. Sample this: Though the cops received the information about the rape on Tuesday night, the four accused who committed the crime moved freely on Delhi roads for more than half-an-hour.

Women from northeast are the most vulnerable targets in the capital. Senior police officers claim that in more than 50% cases of sexual harassment, the victims are from northeast. In 2009, 18 crimes were committed against women from northeast five rape cases, three murder cases, nine cases of molestation and one case of robbery.

"It's because we look different and wear western outfits. Delhiites link our attire to our character. I still don't feel safe in the capital even after staying here for six years,'' said a woman from northeast, who works in the city.

A recent study also pointed out that more than 80% of people from northeast living in Delhi and its satellite cities face racial discrimination. Though Delhi Police has launched a helpline against stalking and eveteasing, it seems to have had little effect. Delhi Police officials say that they came up with a detailed order in 2009 to deal with victims of crime.

Despite this, a 19-year-old girl from northeast was allegedly murdered by an IIT Phd scholar Pushpam Kumar Sinha after she refused his advances in October last year. Delhi Police managed to arrest the accused but officials say that such crimes are rampant. In March this year, another girl from northeast was molested by a resident of Murnika.

"We were able to solve all these cases and have been sensitizing our staff from time to time to stop crimes against northeast women. We will again start sensitizing the staff and will emphasise on beat patrolling in pockets populated by these communities,'' said a senior police officer.

The capital recorded 452 rape cases in 2009. This year till November 15, the Delhi Police has recorded 398 cases.