The order of the Supreme Court directing state governments to compensate victims of acid attacks is a welcome move and a much needed one. While compensation is one part of the story relating to acid victims, the statistics would reveal that the law and order machinery in the states have much more to do.
The data compiled by the Ministry for Home Affairs shows that there was a 300 per cent jump in the number of acid attacks in 2014 alone.
In 2014, 309 cases of acid attacks had been reported when compared to 83,85 and 66 reported in the years 2011,2012 and 2013 respectively.
UP tops the list
The highest number of cases of acid attacks were reported from Uttar Pradesh in 2014. There were 185 cases of acid attacks reported from UP when compared to 53 from Madhya Pradesh which was second in the list. Delhi on the other hand witnessed 27 cases in 2014.
If one goes by these statistics, it would also indicate that some states have done nothing to curb this menace. Acid is still available freely and there are not enough guidelines or mechanisms to prevent sale of acid.
In addition to this in Uttar Pradesh the police have done a shoddy job while bringing those involved in such attacks to justice.
The overall statistics would show that 208 arrests across the country have been carried out in the year 2014 for the 309 cases reported. In UP 66 cases have not been cracked since no arrests have been made and in the case of Delhi for the 27 attacks reported only 7 arrests have been carried out.
The National Commission for Women says that the main reasons for acid attacks is either revenge or punishment. Jilted lovers are the biggest culprits and while it is difficult to track each one of them, experts still feel that regulations can be in place to curb sale of acid.