Hyderabad: The data on communal incidents that have taken place in the country in the last three years differ in the two crime reporting forums, the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) and the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) database.
In 2015, the MHA reported 751 communal incidents whereas the NCRB reported 789.
In 2016, MHA reported 703 communal incidents and NCRB, 869 and in 2017, 822 reports of communal incidents across India. Comparable data between MHA and NCRB is still awaited for 2017.
The reason for the discrepancy in numbers is because lynching is being counted as an incident and recorded separately. Both the forums collect data of crimes in each state. But different states document their crime data by different methods. For example, in a recent incident in Hyderabad, a transgender was lynched to death by a group of people who mistook the person to be a child-nabber.
The persons arrested for the incident were charged under section 302 of the IPC (murder) and under relevant sections of the SC/ST Act. But it was not recorded as a lynching or communal incident, said inspector S. Navveenn of the Chandrayangutta police.
A similar incident took place in 2015, when a man, Mohammad Akhlaq, was beaten to death in Dadri, a town in Uttar Pradesh, because he was suspected of eating beef.
Those who were arrested in this case were charged under IPC Sections 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly), 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder), 458 (house trespassing or house breaking) and 504 (intentional assault with intent to breach peace).
These two incidents of lynching were not reported as communal incidents and therefore were not reflected in the crime figures.
The Supreme Court has found it necessary to request Parliament to make lynching a separate offence....