Delhi, or the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi, is a city and Union Territory of India. It is also one of the five mega cities of India i.e. it has a population of more than 10 million. Having an average density of 225pph the city spans over 1483 square kilometers. Along with huge socio-economic development the city has also gained the title of “Rape Capital’ of India owing to the high rate of crimes especially those against women and girls. According to the National Crime Records Bureau’s Crime in India 2015 statistics, Delhi is the second most unsafe city in India with a crime rate of 1066.2. Of the five mega cities, Delhi has the highest rate of crimes registered under murder, rape and insulting the modesty of women. This perception of Delhi affects the how and to what extent women access public space.
To assess the perception of safety at night by women, safety audits were conducted throughout the city using the Safetipin apps. Safetipin, is a map-based mobile phone and online application, which works to make communities and cities safer by providing safety-related information collected by users and by trained auditors. At the core of the app is the Women’s Safety Audit. A Women’s Safety Audit (WSA) is a participatory tool for collecting and assessing information about perceptions of urban safety in public spaces.
The audit is based on nine parameters – Lighting, Openness, Visibility, Crowd, Security, Walkpath, Availability of Public Transport, Gender Diversity and Feeling. Each parameter is rated 0/1/2/3 with 0 being Poor rating and 3 being Good. All parameters except Feeling are completely objective and are rated on the basis of a well defined rubric. Based on the ratings for each of the parameters, an aggregate Safety Score is generated. The Safety Score of a point is thus a reflection of the perception of safety at that particular location. The Safety Score of a city is the aggregate of all the audit pins in it.
Data was also collected using the Safetipin Nite app. This app (not available in app stores) collects photographs which are geotagged and also have time stamps. Phones with this app installed were mounted on the windshield of cars. As the car moves, photographs are continuously taken of the footpath side of the road. These photographs are then coded by a trained in-house team of professionals to generate the audits. Additional data is also recorded for the parameters of Lighting, Walkpath, Visibility, Security and Public Transport.
Delhi has a Safety Score of 3.3/5.
Safety audits indicate that Delhi’s Safety Score is 3.3/5. A total of 44,396 safety audits have been collected. Of these 5,296 audits were conducted by app users and 39,100 were generated using the Safetipin Nite app covering 3,910 kilometers of road length.
Audits indicate that 50% of the area audited has a Safety Score of 4.0 or above. 6% of the audit locations have been given a Safety Score of less than 1.0. Another 9% of the audit points have a Safety Score ranging between 1.0 to 1.9 and 14% have a score from 2.0 to 2.9. 21% of the audit pins have a Safety Score from 3.0 to 3.9.
Shown in the graph on right are the average parameter ratings for each of the nine parameters. Of the nine parameters, Security and Gender Usage have been given a poor rating. Visibility and Crowd parameters have been rated Below Average. Access to Public Transport facilities has been rated as Average. Lighting, Openness and Walkpath have been rated Above Average. The Feeling of safety has been rated as Average for the city.
The stacked bar chart on the right below shows good points as positive and poor points as negative numbers. This indicates both the pin distribution of the four ratings within each parameter and also the relative performance of each parameter.
In terms of jurisdiction, of the eleven Revenue Districts the North District has the lowest Safety Score of 2.6/5 and the North East District has the highest Safety Score of 3.9/5. Of the thirteen Police District, the Rohini District has the lowest rating of 2.8/5 and the North East district has the highest rating of 3.9/5. of the 70 Constituencies, Babarpur constituency ahs been rated the highest Safety Score of 4.3/5 and Bawana has the lowest Safety Score of 2.1/5. of the four Municipal Corporations, the East Delhi Municipal Corporation has the highest score of 3.6/5 and North the lowest of 3.1/5.
Data analysis indicates that the parameter of Lighting has the maximum impact on the perception of safety followed by Gender Usage and Visibility. Also, each parameter has a different impact potential on the overall perception of safety. Improving the parameter with greater impact potential would result in a higher increase of the Safety Score.
The Gap Impact bar on the right indicates the extent of influence and the relative impact that each parameter has on the perception of safety. The combined length indicates the impact potential of the parameter. The parameters with the maximum combined length have the highest impact on the perception of safety and vice versa i.e. Lighting has the maximum impact and Transportation the least. The positive length (in green) indicates the extent of provision that has already been made on ground. The negative length (in red) indicates the (remaining) amount of improvement needed to increase the Safety Score.
The safety ratings varies largely on account of the infrastructure provision and planning typology of the area. Areas which are well lit, have proper footpaths, has access to public transportation and are active, tend to be safer. The Feeling parameter is directly impacted by the other eight parameters. Lighting, Walkpath, Security, Public Transportation and Visibility are infrastructural parameters and can be improved upon. This improvisation would result in more people especially women using public places at night.