- Yogi Adityanath issued a booklet as he completed 30 months in his office
- He listed "safety of women and girls" as a priority for his government
- Defending his track record, he said rape cases were down 36 per cent
Yogi Adityanath, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, today listed the "safety of women and girls" as a priority for his government, at a time two major cases involving accused linked to the ruling BJP contradict his claim. A teen rape survivor from Unnao is said to face the highest level of threat to her life and the BJP's Chinmayanand is yet to be charged with rape four days after she testified before a court.
On completing 30 months in power in India's most populous and politically vital state, Yogi Adityanath said: "Safety of women and girls is our priority. Prosecution is being speeded up in cases involving crimes against women. Speedy trial and chargesheets is our focus." Defending his track record, he said rape cases were down 36 per cent.
The Chief Minister also claimed that there had been a decrease in the general crime rate since he took charge. "There was a high crime rate when we came but in the past two years, we have managed to either eliminate criminals or jail them. There has been a marked decrease in the crime rate and we are focusing on women safety too," he said.
"There has not been a single incident of riot in the state in the past two-and-half years. The dreaded criminals have either fled from the state or are in jail. There has been a sharp decline in dacoity, rape, extortion, loot and riot cases."
Yogi Adityanath's comments appear inconsistent with the progress of rape cases in the headlines recently. Chinmayanand, a former union minister and senior BJP leader, is yet to be charged with rape nearly a month after a young woman accused him of sexually assaulting her for a year after helping with her admission into a law college he runs.
A Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team of the UP police has questioned the woman as well as Chinmayanand, and has also searched his ashram and her hostel room. But there is no rape case against Chinmayanand so far, only blackmail and kidnapping charges.
In a press conference yesterday, the SIT hit out at what it called a media trial but still didn't announce any charges against Chinmayanand, a former minister of state for home who runs several ashrams and institutions.
In the Unnao case, it took a year to file charges, and that too, came after the girl's father was murdered.
Referring to the cases, especially the Unnao rape survivor's condition, former UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said: "There is a beti (daughter) from Unnao. Her father was murdered. She had to come to the Chief Minister's office and tried to immolate herself to get her FIR registered."