LAHORE - Incidents of armed robberies, motor-vehicle snatching and cattle-theft swelled to an alarming level in Punjab in first 9 months of this year as compared to the previous one.

The latest police data also shows that murder, attempted murder, abduction, kidnapping for ransom, rape, and gang-rape case have also increased significantly.

The provincial police registered at least 292,188 cases of crime during the first nine months of 2018 with substantial increase in the incidents of crime against person and crime against property.

According to police figures, at least 62,071 cases were registered in the category of crime against property from January to September as compared to 59,584 such cases reported by police during the same period last year. Similarly, the police registered at least 39, 002 cases in the category of crime against person this year as compared to 37,939 such cases reported during the same period last year.

All reported crime incidents are divided into two main categories- crime against person and crime against property. The part-I (crimes against person) includes eight categories - murder, attempted murder, hurt, kidnapping, kidnapping for ransom, rape, gang rape and others. The part-II (crime against property) comprises of dacoity, robbery, burglary, theft, motor vehicle theft, motor vehicle snatching, and cattle theft cases.

The Punjab Police overall reported at least 292,188 cases of crime from January to September this year while last year the police had reported 307,113 cases of crime during the same period. More than 40,244 cases are still under investigation and the police have failed to trace criminals behind no less than 11,931 cases.

However, the cases reported by police under the head of “local and special laws violations” decreased slightly during the first 9 months of 2018 as compared to the previous year.

The police reported 96,785 cases in the category of local and special laws violations this year while last year at least 112,769 cases were reported by police under this head. Also, police reported at least 94,330 cases of crime under the head of “Miscellaneous Laws” during the first 9 months of this year against the last year’s 96,821 cases reported in the same category.

The conviction rate however improved comparatively. At least 66,483 persons were convicted during the first 9 months of this year while last year at least 61,852 persons had been convicted in various cases during the same period. Also, at least 52,034 persons were acquitted this year while at least 51,162 persons were acquitted in different cases during the corresponding period of last year.

MURDER: The incidents of murder registered an increase during the first nine months of 2018 as compared to the previous year. At least 3,157 people were murdered across the province during the first 9 months of this year. However, the police had reported at least 3,068 murder cases during the corresponding period of 2017.

The police have declared at least 57 murder cases as untraceable while 767 cases are still under investigation. Last year, police investigators were unable to solve many blind murder cases. In these blind murder cases, several victims were women and children who were found brutally murdered in different parts of the province.

ATTEMPTED MURDER: The province also witnessed a sizeable surge in the incidents of attempted murder registered during the first eight months of this year if compared to the corresponding period of 2017. The provincial police registered 3,879 attempted murder cases against 3,350 such incidents.

HURT: The police, during the first nine months of this year, reported at least 11,786 “Hurt” cases in the category of crime against person. However, the provincial police had reported 12,593 such cases during the first nine months of 2017

KIDNAPPING: The provincial police registered at least 11,489 abduction cases during the first nine months of 2018 as compared to 10,639 kidnapping incidents reported during the corresponding period of 2017. Most of the victims were said to be women and young girls who were abducted by gunmen. At least 42 cases of kidnapping for ransom were also registered with the police during the first nine months of this year. Last year, the police had reported 35 cases of kidnapping for ransom during the same period.

RAPE/GANG-RAPE: At least 2,543 rape cases were reported by the provincial police during the first nine months of this year while during the matching period of 2017 the police had reported 2,305 rape cases. Similarly, at least 151 cases of gang-rape were reported by police during the first 9 months of this year against 143 gang rape incidents registered with the police during the same period in 2017. The police also reported at least 5,955 cases under the head of “Others” in the category of crime against person.

DACOITIES: The police, during the first nine months of this year reported at least 554 cases of dacoities (involving five or more than five gunmen) against 498 such cases registered with the provincial police during the same period in 2017.

At least 137 dacoity cases are still under investigation while police have declared at least 37 dacoity cases as untraceable.

ROBBERIES: The new police data shows that at least 9,988 armed robberies were reported during the first nine months of this year against 9,195 such cases reported during the corresponding period of 2017. Similarly, at least 7,532 cases of burglary were reported by the police during the first nine months of 2018 against 8,319 such cases registered with the police during the same period in 2017.

THEFT: During the first nine months of this year the provincial police registered 1,041 theft cases against 1,166 theft cases reported during the corresponding period of 2017. The police data revealed a considerable increase in cattle-theft cases this year as compared to the previous year. According to police, at least 4,039 cattle theft cases were registered with the police during the first nine months of 2018 while the police had reported 3,853 such cases during the same period in 2017.

MOTOR VEHICLE SNATCHING: The police during the first nine months of 2018 reported at least 13,746 cases of motor-vehicle-theft while during the same period in 2017 the police had reported 11,540 such cases. As far as the incidents of motor-vehicle-snatching are concerned, the police this year reported at least 2,652 cases against 2,569 such incidents reported during the same period in 2017.

In Punjab, auto-lifting has become a booming business and more than 20,000 citizens are deprived of their vehicles every year. Less than 10 per cent of the total snatched or stolen vehicles are recovered by police annually, and thousands of auto-lifting cases are declared by police as “untraceable” every year.