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Crime in India Report, 2020 – Key Highlights

Last week, the NCRB published the latest edition of its Crime in India report. The report is now in its 68th issue. Since 1953, the NCRB has been publishing this report annually.

According to the report, there has been a significant increase in the number of cases registered. The number of cases registered has increased by 28%. The crime rate per lakh people has similarly risen from 385.5 in 2019 to 487.8 in 2020. In 2020, a total of 66,01,285 cognizable crimes were registered. The rate of charge sheeting under IPC Crimes has increased by 12.5 percent over 2019 (67.4 percent). However, because of the pandemic and the lockdown, crime against women, children, senior citizens, theft, and dacoity have all decreased.

The number of cases of disobedience to order duly implemented by public servants increased substantially, from 29,469 in 2019 to 6,12,179 in 2020. Cases filed under Other IPC Crimes and Other State Local Acts have also surged. This rise is primarily due to violations of Covid-19 standards. There has been a two-lakh case decline in traditional crime registration.

Summary of the report


There was a marginal increase of 1 percent in the registration of murder cases from 2019. A total of 29,193 cases were registered in 2020.

‘Disputes’ was the most common reason for murder (10,404 incidents), followed by ‘Personal Vendetta or Enmity’ (4,034 cases).

Kidnapping and Abduction

In 2020, 84,805 cases of kidnapping and abduction were reported, a 19.3 percent reduction from 2019.

Crime against Children

1,28,531 cases were reported of Crime against Children in 2020. This number was 1,48,090 in 2019. As a result, there was a 13.2 percent reduction.

42.6 percent of offences were reported under the Kidnapping and Abduction Act, while 38.8 percent were reported under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act, 2012, including child rape.

Madhya Pradesh recorded the maximum number of these crimes, followed by Uttar Pradesh.

Crime against Scheduled Castes (SCs)

Crime against Scheduled Castes increased by 9.4 percent in 2020.

The total number of cases registered was 50,291. Most of them (32.9 percent) were registered under simple hurt, with 8.5 percent under the Prevention of Atrocities Act and 7.5 percent under Criminal Intimidation.

Uttar Pradesh had the most atrocities against SCs (12,714 cases), while Madhya Pradesh had the highest crime rate (60.8%).

Crime against Scheduled Tribes (STs)

8272 cases were reported under Crimes against STs (an increase of 9.3 percent over 2019).

The most common type of crime was simple hurt (27.2 percent), followed by rape (13.7 percent) and attack on women with the intent to outrage her modesty (10.7 percent).

Madhya Pradesh had the maximum cases (2401), and Kerala had the highest crime rate (26.8 percent).

Cyber Crimes 

Cybercrime increased by 11.8 percent in 2020.

Total cases registered in 2019 were 44,735 and 50,035 in 2020.

60.2 percent of cases were with the motive of fraud and 6.6% were of sexual exploitation.

Environment-related Offences

Environmental offences surged by 78.1 percent.

The total number of cases rose from 34,676 in 2019 to 61,767 in 2020. Environment-related offences grew the greatest in Tamil Nadu, from 13,316 to 42,756.

Most cases were registered under the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (80.5 percent). The number of cases registered under Noise Pollution Acts was the second highest (11.8 percent).

Environmental offences include cases filed in violation of the Forest Act and Forest Conservation Act of 1927, the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972, the Environmental (Protection) Act of 1986, and others.

Crime against Women

Crime against women reported in 2020 was 3,71,503, as compared to 4,05,326 in 2019 and 3,87,236 in 2018. The rate has dropped by 8.3 percent.

The majority of the registered cases were of cruelty by a husband or his relatives, with 1,12,292 cases (about 30.2 percent of the total cases). Assault on women with the intent to outrage her modesty came a close second with 86,745 cases (23.3 percent). 63,693 cases were reported of kidnapping and abduction cases (17.14 percent) and rape cases were 28,153 (7.5 percent). 

With 49,385 overall crimes reported against women, Uttar Pradesh had the greatest number (per one lakh of the population). 

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