MHA proposes investigative units on crimes against women
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) proposes to set up Investigative Units on Crimes against Women (IUCAW), in 20 per cent of the districts of each state on a 50:50 cost sharing basis with the states. The Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has written to the Chief Minister of the States that there is a need to strengthen various elements of the criminal justice system, namely, investigation, prosecution and trials by courts to deal with the issue of rise of crimes against women.
The MHA has proposed to set up 150 such IUCAW units initially on pilot basis in most crime prone districts of each state. Elaborating the IUCAW, the Home Minister mentioned that these units may consist of 15 personnel, preferably five of them women. The states will have full flexibility on whether to create new posts or to designate from the existing strength. Each IUCAW will be headed by an officer of the rank of Additional Superintendent of Police assisted by two Deputy Superintendents of Police. Out of the total 2,250 personnel required for the 150 IUCAWs, 750 will be women. This will involve a total expenditure of ` 84 crore annually, out of which half will be provided by the Centre.
Rajnath Singh mentioned that the objective of these units will be to investigate cases referred to them, augment the investigative machinery of the states in relation to the heinous crimes against women, especially rape, dowry death, acid attack and human trafficking, and also instil confidence and encourage women to come forward and lodge their complaint and improve the gender ratio in the state police forces which is adversely impacting effective implementation of the legislations relating to women. Besides, these units will have the additional functionality of proactive policing, intelligence gathering, tackling organised crime, monitoring proper implementation of the legislative provisions, helping awareness generation and promotion of social participation in checking crimes against women.
The Home Minister mentioned that these measures will help in ensuring higher conviction rate in different states to check crimes against women and human trafficking.
Rajnath Singh has also advised the states to set up separate fast track courts to deal with these cases expeditiously. He has also assured all possible assistance to the states in taming the menace of crimes against women.