Andhra Pradesh police conducted an Annual Press Meet in December 2020. The press briefing was to give people an account of the prevalence of crime in the state. The Director-General of Police D Gautam Sawang admitted that significant improvement is needed in the area of crimes against women.
In Andhra Pradesh, molestation and dowry-related deaths have increased since 2019. While at the state-level, the proportion of total investigations completed related to crimes against women plummeted from 98% of total reported cases in 2018 to 68% in 2020. Cases under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POSCO) Act rose by 13% to 1,598 in one year. Most of these cases were from rural Guntur and both East and West Godavari districts.
Crimes against women in the East Godavari district have alarmingly increased compared to 2019. 833 cases were registered under the Disha Act alone in 2020, as compared to 642 the previous year. According to the annual report, East Godavari district continues to be one of the worst for women and children safety. 154 cases were registered under the POCSO in the district.
The AP DGP said that there is a social dimension to women’s crimes. A majority of cases go unreported in the state as women are hesitant to come forward to register their complaints with the police. The rise in the number of cases, in addition to under-reporting, raises serious concerns about the protection and safety of women and minors in Andhra Pradesh.