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Is Delhi the ‘crime capital’ of the country?

Recent incidents of crimes are asking serious questions about security arrangements in New Delhi


A 25-year-old Mangolpuri resident in Delhi was stabbed to death on Wednesday night after an argument at a birthday party. The family of Rinku Sharma, also known as Rohit Sharma, has alleged a communal motive to his murder, but the police denied it, saying that it is inquiring all the angles. Five accused, Mehtab, Islam, Nasruddin, Tajuddin, and Jahid were arrested on Thursday and charged with murder.

Rinku Sharma, a BJP worker, had gone to a birthday party near his home in Mangolpuri, Delhi on Wednesday where the five accused were also present. As per the police, all of them were neighbours and had known each other for a long time. A fight and an argument broke at the party, after which Rinku went home. Five accused followed him and attacked him with a knife, stabbing him in his back.

While some are busy finding a communal angel angle, few are concerned about the security arrangement in the national capital. New Delhi has been seeing many cases of murder when a person was killed for petty issues. This doesn’t only question the competence of city police but also the way Delhiites do their day-to-day business.


Read more: Week Highlights: From Rinku Sharma’s death to Uttarakhand glacier burst, everything you need to know



Recent crime data in New Delhi

As per the NCRB data, New Delhi saw 832 crimes reported every day from January 2019 to August 2019. It is a 27 per cent increase from the corresponding period in 2018. The data showed that 4 out of 5 crimes were related to theft or burglary. On average, a snatching or robbery takes place every hour in New Delhi.

Delhi tops all the crime charts of the country with 41 per cent share of the total crimes committed. In fact, 2 out of 5 crimes committed across the country occur in the national capital. Looking at the data of metro cities only, Delhi is miles ahead of any other big city. Mumbai is in the second position with 40,757 cases, almost 5 times less than that of New Delhi. Bengaluru had 30,792 cases, Chennai had 20,160 cases and Kolkata had 19,682 cases.

An annual survey on Global Livability Index, released by EIU (Economist Intelligence Unit) stated that Delhi ranks 118th among 140 cities. The poor air quality and rise in petty crimes were the two most contributing factors in such a low ranking of the national capital. The report also stated that the rising crime rate in New Delhi affected its stability.


Other recent crimes in New Delhi

A casual look at the city pages of national dailies reveals many such incidents.  A 50-year-old man, Raees Ansari was shot dead at point-blank range in January 2021 by two men in broad daylight. Raees Ansari was standing outside his home in Jadrabad in north Delhi when his killers approached him, the CCTV footage revealed.

A 24-year-old man in Delhi was arrested in January 2021 for allegedly killing a person who was suspected to steal his pigs from his farm. Prince, also known as Aman, owns around 3000 pigs, but some unknown people came to his home to steal pigs during the lockdown. He started surveillance on the farm at night to prevent theft. He later saw 5-6 men loitering in a Santro car near the farm around 3 am. When they tried to flee the spot Aman chased and fired several rounds at the car. Next morning the farm owner came to know that a dead body was found with a gunshot injury in a car in Delhi’s Mangolpuri area. After confirming that it was the same car at which he fired shots, he fled away from his house.

A 25-year-old vegetable seller was arrested in the second week of January for killing another man after a fight broke out between them over extortion of money in the Shakarpur area of New Delhi. The accused was identified as Ravi, who assaulted Vijay on January 10, following which the victim collapsed.

A 26-year-old man was arrested was Delhi police in December 2020 for blackmailing at least 100 women in Delhi and trying to extort money from a south Delhi resident with threats of circulating her indecent photographs on social media.


Is dense population the reason behind rising crimes?

Former DCP Neeraj Kumar had earlier said that massive influx of people leads to more crime in the city. As per the Census 2011, almost 2 lakh people from other states migrate to the national capital. The sheer mass of Delhi’s population is also a contributing factor. The national capital is the most populated city in the country with more than 1.9 crore people residing here. Around 12,803 people reside per square kilometre in New Delhi. The more the density, the more are the chances of crime being committed.

Also, New Delhi shares borders with Uttar Pradesh and Haryana, which makes it easier for criminals to commit a crime and escape to these areas, which is out of Delhi Police’s jurisdiction. As per Neeraj Kumar, most of the crimes happen in the Eastern part of Delhi – Nirman Vihar, Laxmi Nagar, and Mayur Vihar from where criminals easily flee to Ghaziabad or Noida.


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