New Delhi (PTI): A total of 28,522 FIRs of murder were registered in 2022 an average of 78 killings every day or more than three every hour across India, down from 29,272 in 2021 and 29,193 in 2020, according to the latest NCRB data.

'Disputes' with 9,962 cases was the motive in highest number of murder cases in 2022 followed by 'personal vendetta or enmity' in 3,761 cases and 'gain' in 1,884 cases, said the data in the annual crime report of the National Crime Records Bureau, which functions under Union Ministry of Home Affairs.

The rate of murder per lakh population across the country stood at 2.1, while the charge sheeting in such cases was 81.5, according to the NCRB.

Uttar Pradesh saw the highest number of such FIRs at 3,491 in 2022 followed by Bihar (2,930), Maharashtra (2,295), Madhya Pradesh (1,978) and Rajasthan (1,834), with the top five states together accounting for 43.92 per cent of murder cases in the country, the data showed.

The top five states with the least number of murder cases in 2022 were Sikkim (9), Nagaland (21), Mizoram (31), Goa (44), and Manipur (47), according to the NCRB, which is tasked with collection and analysis of crime data.

Among Union Territories, Delhi, the national capital, registered 509 cases of murder in 2022 followed by Jammu and Kashmir (99), Puducherry (30), Chandigarh (18), Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu (16), Andaman and Nicobar Islands (7), Ladakh (5) and Lakshadweep (Zero).

Across India in 2022, the murder rate was highest in Jharkhand (4), followed by Arunachal Pradesh (3.6), Chhattisgarh and Haryana (both 3.4), Assam and Odisha (both 3).

Uttar Pradesh (1.5), Bihar (2.3), Maharashtra (1.8), Madhya Pradesh (2.3) and Rajasthan (2.3) fared better in terms of crime per lakh population.

In terms of age, 95.4 per cent victims of murder were adults.

Of total murder victims, 8,125 were female and nine third-gender persons, with men constituting about 70 per cent of victims, according to the NCRB.

In a note of caution about the annual report, the NCRB said the primary presumption that the upward swing in police data indicates an increase in crime and thus a reflection of the ineffectiveness of the police is fallacious.

"'Rise in crime' and 'increase in registration of crime by police' are clearly two different things, a fact which requires better understanding. Thus an oft-repeated expectation from certain quarters that an effective police administration will be able to keep the crime figures low, is misplaced," it stated.

"Increase in crime numbers in a state police data may in fact be on account of certain citizen centric police initiatives, like launching of e-FIR facility or women Helpdesks, etc.

"The increase or decrease in crime numbers, however, does call for a professional investigation of underlying factors pertaining to the local communities to suitably address the pertinent issues," it added.

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New Delhi, Mar 4: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in his reply to the latest ED summons related to the excise policy case has expressed readiness to appear before the agency through video-conferencing after March 12, government sources said on Monday.

Kejriwal has so far skipped multiple summonses of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), calling them illegal and asking the agency to wait as the matter was in court.

The chief minister reiterated that the summonses are "illegal" but still he was ready to answer the questions by the probe agency, the sources said.

Kejriwal also has to appear before a city court on March 16. The court has sought his personal appearance in a complaint case filed by the ED over skipping of its summonses by him.