Gandhinagar: Underlining the need to curb the crime of rape with speedy investigation by police, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said it's the duty of the judiciary to ensure that justice is delivered without "constant delays" though there cannot be "instant justice".
He also said that the crime of rape should be curbed without any discrimination or giving it a political hue.
The vice president's comments came on the eve of the 7th anniversary of the December 16, 2012 Nirbhaya gang-rape case that shook the nation, though he didn't mention the incident in his speech.
Recently, Union Home Ministry had sent to President Ram Nath Kovind the recommendation of the Delhi government rejecting the mercy plea of one of the convicts in the gang-rape case.
Naidu was speaking at a ceremony where he awarded President's Colour and Standard, including special flag and emblem, to the Gujarat Police, at the state Police Academy in Karai village in Gandhinagar district of Gujarat.
The Gujarat Police became the seventh such police force to be conferred with the symbol of excellence and pride.
"The rise in the number of crimes against women and children, especially heinous crimes, troubles me deeply. We have been hearing incidents here and there across the country.
"I want political leadership of the country not to politicise this and give it a political colour," the Vice President said.
He said rape is a crime against women which should be "curbed with all might without any discrimination".
"Police should be people-friendly and women-friendly and deal with crimes against women with agility. Police should register every complaint without any distinction, complete investigation at the earliest and start prosecution at the earliest," the vice president said.
Appealing to judiciary, Naidu said judicial enquiry should be concluded at the earliest and punishment be handed to culprits at the earliest so as to "curb" such criminal tendency.
The country had witnessed a huge outrage with the recent incidents of rapes and murders in Hyderabad and Unnao.
He said while police should do speedy investigation and file a chargesheet at the earliest in such crimes, judiciary should ensure that there are no "constant delays".
"There is a duty cast upon the judiciary as well. You cannot do instant justice, but you can't have constant delays.
This has to be understood by one and all," he said.
Recently, Telangana Police had killed four suspects arrested for the rape and murder of a Hyderabad-based veterinarian in an alleged encounter.
After the 'encounter', Chief Justice of India (CJI) Sharad Bobde had said that justice can never be instant and it "loses its character as justice" if it becomes revenge.
Stating that 2013 Justice Verma Committee report on crimes against women be implemented "in the letter and spirit", the vice president said, "We simply cannot let the situation to continue".
"It is important that we set up a special team of police to investigate such crimes and police stations become safe places for women and children in distress. They must feel protected inside the four walls. Every single police officer must be sensitised about victims of such crimes," the vice president said.
He said victims of such crimes must be treated with dignity and compassion. "More importantly, there should not be any delay in filing FIRs and conducting investigation," he added.
Naidu also expressed concerns over "shortage of security personnel and corruption" in the police force.
He said existing infrastructure was not capable of meeting the requirements of the police force.
"There is a huge shortage of personnel and human resources in police department. This needs to be met at the earliest across the country. In today's information age, police force need to be equipped with modern means of communication and information.
"The recruitment process must also be reviewed to take into consideration things like forensic, law, cybercrime, etc. along with physical fitness," Naidu said.
He further said a part of police reform is "intrinsically linked" with legal and judicial reforms.
"It is of paramount importance that we carry out judicial reforms by augmenting its human resources and reducing pendency along with police reform to create a robust justice system," he said.
Lamenting low conviction rate, Naidu called for a need to "augment investigation, intelligence gathering capabilities of police departments".