New Delhi: Rapes have been on the rise despite stringent new laws on sexual offences against women, the Delhi High Court has observed while upholding the life sentence given to an Uber driver for raping a 25-year-old executive in the cab in 2014.
A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and Vinod Goel noted that the statistics of the National Crime Records Bureau for 2016 show that 38,947 women were raped that year. "In other words, nearly five rapes were committed every hour in that year (2016)!," the bench said in its judgement passed recently.
The incident had taken place on the night of December 5, 2014 when the victim, a finance executive working in Gurgaon, was returning home in Inderlok in Central Delhi.
The driver, Shiv Kumar Yadav, was arrested two days later on December 7 from Mathura and has been in jail since then.
The high court affirmed the conviction and sentence handed down to Yadav by the trial court for causing grievous bodily harm or endangering life of a woman while raping her. It refused to show any leniency to him. "Despite his previous criminal record of being involved, amongst others, in cases punishable under Section 376 (rape) IPC, the appellant (Yadav) does not appear to have learnt anything from those experiences," said the bench.
"While one of the cases against him under Section 376 IPC ended in his acquittal, there is at least one other case involving the same offence pending against him. Given the track record of Yadav and the extreme physical and mental trauma suffered by the victim, there is absolutely no scope for any leniency as far as the sentence is concerned," it said, dismissing his appeal challenging the trial court's verdict.