Data Focus

Abuse of women at home rose during lockdown

Radheshyam Jadhav Pune | Updated on November 09, 2020

53 per cent of cases are from Delhi and Uttar Pradesh

The National Commission for Women (NCW) received over 13,000 complaints of domestic violence during the Covid-induced lockdown (March to September). Of these, 53 per cent cases were from Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. Uttar Pradesh women reported the highest number of complaints (5,470) followed by Delhi (1,697). Interestingly, complaints from North-East States are less compared to other States in the country.

Along with Uttar Pradesh and Delhi other three States including Maharashtra, Haryana and Bihar make 70 per cent of the complains registered by women during the lockdown. Not even one per cent of cases have been registered by women in North-East States.

The number of complaints have increased since June, recording a peak in July of 2,914 cases, as economic distress and job losses could have led to more domestic violence.


This data presented by Ministry of Women and Child Development to the Lok Sabha is in consonance with the data in National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) when it comes to Uttar Pradesh.

In the NCRB report-2019, Uttar Pradesh tops in crime against women. The data shows that 1,75,309 cases of crime against women were reported from Uttar Pradesh in three years (2017 to 2019). This number accounts for about 15 per cent of the total number of cases reported during this period. Maharashtra along with Rajasthan, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh also feature among top States in the NCRB data.

Experts say that the cases reported during lockdown are just a tip of the iceberg as many women, especially in rural India have no reporting mechanism available.

Key factors

The combination of economic and social stresses brought on by the pandemic, as well as restrictions on movement, have dramatically increased the numbers of women and girls facing abuse, according to the United Nations. The domestic violence cases are emerging across the world.

According to UN women, since the outbreak of Covid-19, emerging data and reports from those on the front lines have shown that all types of violence against women and girls, particularly domestic violence, has intensified.

“This is the shadow pandemic growing amidst the Covid-19 crisis and we need a global collective effort to stop it. As Covid-19 cases continue to strain health services, essential services, such as domestic violence shelters and helplines, have reached capacity. More needs to be done to prioritise addressing violence against women in Covid-19 response and recovery efforts,” UN women note mentioned.

Published on November 09, 2020

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