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In the most recent press conference held by the Ministry of Justice, statistics on crime till June of past two years and this year was released that showed an overall decrease in the crime but increase in cases under domestic violence.

The statistics showed an increase by 88% in the crimes reported under the Family Protection Act as compared to last year till June which showed a decline by 50%. The decline in 50% last year was in comparison to the 32 cases Bureau of Public Safety (BPS) received from January to June of 2017 .

The total cases under FPA that was revealed to the Island Times in previous interview with Officer Rebecca who deals with FPA cases at BPS was 54.

The cases under FPA have gone up to 30 till June this year and the officials believe that this is because of awareness amongst people about FPA which is encouraging them to report the case of abuse.

The Director of BPS Alloysius Alonz has urged public to report a case of domestic abuse in the neighborhood even if it is based on mere suspicion.

The domestic abuse cases recorded at the BPS have gone up to 10 in the month of May this year with 8 cases in March, 4 in the month of January, 3 cases in February and June, and 2 cases in April.

Officer Rebecca previously stressed that people need to understand police intervention is to stop the violence and not to break up the family.

The police has the authority to put a restraining order on the defendant to cease the abuse.

Women who face emotional or physical abuse can also reach out to the court directly with a 24 hours open help.

“We started out in 2014 with number of cases being 1 in a month. Last year we received over 60 cases overall,” said Makka Oimei who works as a Family Protection Act Clerk at the court.

Combining the number of cases under FPA BPS received with the number revealed by court, it goes up to 114 cases in the year 2018.

The court as well has an authority to put out an immediate restraining order. The court also has the power to keep the victim protected and incognito. However, for the purpose of safety and benefit of the victims, Oimei couldn’t provide more details.(Eshan Kalyanikar)