Violence against women: Delhi, Sao Paolo named worst megacities in world; London, Paris, Tokyo the safest

Delhi has been named the worst megacity in the world for violence against women and sexual harassment as per a survey, which said the Indian capital would be at par with Brazil's Sao Paolo at bottom spot.

Delhi, which topped rape statistics for India, emerged as one of the two worst cities when respondents were asked if women could live there without the risk of sexual violence, including rape, attacks or harassment.

The poll, conducted by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, revealed that the situation did not improve after the 2012 New Delhi gang-rape incident, which was said to have "jolted many in the world’s second most populous country out of apathy over the treatment of women, forcing the government to toughen penalties for sex crimes".

Authorities recorded four rapes every hour in India in 2015, the report said.

"Even after the Delhi gang-rape, we are seeing rising cases of sexual violence. All measures taken so far are welcome, but they are not enough," the Reuters report quoted lawyer Rishi Kant as saying. "These rapists act because they know they won’t get caught. So strengthening the police and courts to effectively investigate, prosecute, convict and punish is key."

 Violence against women: Delhi, Sao Paolo named worst megacities in world; London, Paris, Tokyo the safest

Representational image. Reuters

As reported by Firstpost in June, the number of rapes reported each year in Delhi has more than tripled over the last five years, registering an increase of 277 percent, from 572 in 2011 to 2,155 in 2016, according to data released recently by the Delhi Police.

Delhi, the world's second-most populous city with an estimated 26.5 million residents, was ranked the fourth most dangerous megacity for women in the world overall, performing worse than Dhaka which came seventh and Lagos at eighth, The Times of India reported.

Delhi was the third worst city when it came to women's access to economic resources, education, ownership of land or other forms of property, and financial services like bank accounts, the report said.

The city ranked fifth from bottom in indices related to reproductive health and maternal mortality.

Egyptian capital Cairo was ranked the most dangerous megacity in the world for women.

The foundation’s seventh annual perception poll placed London, Tokyo and Paris on the opposite end of the spectrum, calling them the best megacities for women.

While experts said London's ranking was buoyed by Britain’s free and universal National Health Service, as well as coming on top for economic opportunities, women’s rights campaigners in Tokyo said sexual violence remained a hidden problem in the city.

The survey of 380 people was conducted online and over phones between 1 June and 28 July, with 20 experts questioned in each of the 19 cities of the world's biggest megacities. The results were based on a minimum of 15 experts in each city.

With inputs from Reuters

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Updated Date: Oct 16, 2017 09:01:45 IST