Districts in Himachal Pradesh, where the sex ratio is higher, reported fewer sexual assault cases against women, according to a study by the Regional Forensic Science Laboratory here. The study was based on the trends of the sexual assault cases against women received in the laboratory between 2011 and 2015 for five districts in the state. According to the study, in the five districts under the central zone of the state — Mandi, Bilaspur, Kullu, Lahaul and Spiti, and Hamirpur — the number of sexual assault cases was higher where the number of women per thousand men was low.
The Deputy Director of the laboratory, Rajesh Verma said out of about 400 cases, 42.5 per cent were from Mandi district, 28.6 per cent from Kullu, 14.8 per cent from Bilaspur, 12.5 per cent from Hamirpur and around 1.5 per cent from Lahaul and Spiti district. Sexual assault cases every year per lakh population were found to be the highest in Kullu district at 5.1, followed by Lahaul and Spiti at 3.9, Mandi at 3.3, Bilaspur at 3 and Hamirpur at 2.1. These figures made more sense when compared with the social indicators for these districts according to the 2011 census data.
The study revealed that the strongest correlation was observed with the sex ratio (number of females per thousand males) in each district. There was a high negative correlation of these case figures with the sex ratio of the districts. It revealed that sexual assault cases tend to be lower in the districts where the sex ratio was higher.
In Hamirpur district, where the average number of cases per year per lakh population was the lowest at 2.1, the sex ratio was the highest at 1,096 females per 1,000 males. As per the studies conducted by the Junga Forensic laboratory in Shimla, last year the average number of cases per year per lakh population in Kinnaur district was 6.1, which was the highest and the female population there was 818 per 1,000 males.
Verma said a statistical model based on these trends was successful in estimating the number of sexual assault cases in all the districts of Himachal Pradesh and compared well with the figures reported. It was observed that the society where females were more in number and educated a lesser number in sexual assault cases were reported.