The Council for Social Justice and Peace, the social arm of the Archdiocese of Goa, on Wednesday said there was a growing trend in the country to justify crimes in the name of nationalism, reported PTI. This trend has generated fear and insecurity among people, it added.

The council said that the Kathua and Unnao incidents were examples of how crimes were committed in the name of community honour, religion and nationalism. In the Unnao case, a BJP MLA from Uttar Pradesh, Kuldeep Singh Sengar, is accused of raping a teenager in June 2017. In Kathua, eight people are accused of abducting, sedating, repeatedly raping and murdering an eight-year-old in January.

“The failure of law enforcement agencies to register rape cases in time and connivance of their personnel in destroying circumstantial evidence to subvert the process of justice is worrisome,” said Father Savio Fernandes, the executive secretary of the council. He added that attempts to protect rape accused are a threat to the sanctity of democratic institutions.

The council urged Narendra Modi to abolish organisations that advocate hate and subjugate women. It added that the situation in hand demands “a humane and civilised response”.

“A reactionary approach with a clamour for tough rape laws and harshest punishments like death penalty or castration for rapists may hardly be sufficient deterrence for crimes against women and children,” it said. The council said there was a need to “restore a sense of confidence and security among people by ensuring speedy justice and protection to women, children, minorities, Dalits and other oppressed sections”.