Anecdotal evidence, as well as our experience of news reporting of hate crimes, would suggest that most incidents of hate crimes go unreported— both at the local administration (Police complaint, FIR, etc.) and the public level. Media reporting of hate crimes is heavily tilted towards covering the more shocking and gruesome cases of violence, thereby invisibilizing the more everyday forms of violence. The lack of a legislative/legal framework to specifically address violence against religious minorities further discourages reporting and exacerbates the lack of credible official data. Despite our best efforts to cull reports from regional news platforms along with the national platforms, the numbers shown here are, at best, representative of the scale of the problem. The database is a fair accounting of all reported incidents of hate crimes against religious minorities in India, but it is by no means a complete accounting of all such hate crimes happening in the country.
Methodology for Data Collection and Publication
News Portals (Online): The database relies on online news portals, which are widely trusted and considered credible. These include websites of national dailies, local dailies, and other credible online news portals of Urdu and English only. e.g. The Hindu, The Times of India, The Indian Express, The Wire, The Wire (Urdu), The Print, News18, IndiaTV, NDTV, India Today, Firstpost, Scroll, The Quint, Free Press Journal, NewsD etc.
Newspaper Clippings (Offline): The database makes use of newspaper clippings. These include national dailies and local dailies, both in English and Urdu language. These clippings are collected, scanned, and uploaded on an online archive.org and all the uploaded data is publicly accessible at https://archive.org/details/dotodatabase.
Civil Society/Fact-finding reports: The database takes into consideration various civil society and fact-finding reports done by various organizations.
Subjects that we try to engage with:
The subjects of the database are the affected individuals/class/group of people who belong to religious minorities (Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Jains, Zoroastrian(Parsis) and Buddhists).
Religious identity based hate crimes which have taken place within the territory of India across 28 States and 8 Union territories as mentioned in The Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India website(https://mea.gov.in/india-at-glance.htm)
Entry and Publication Process
Identification: Any potential entry is identified from various places: Browsing web portals of News, Internet searches, Social Media Platforms, Offline archives.
Fact-checking/Source: The input received from the previous step is cross-checked from various platforms (dealt with in the above section 'Data collection and the compilation') and in some cases verification is also done from local sources like local activists and community leaders.
Entry on the website: After the fact-checking, an entry is made through the website by a process of logging into the database's website (https://dotodatabase.com).
Scrutiny by Editor: Once an entry is made into the database, it is recorded and managed by the Editor. The entry at this stage faces scrutiny and the incident may or may not be approved depending on the veracity and accuracy of the entry made. The entry made can be checked for its status (approved, rejected, or pending) by the person who has made the entry.
Approval: In continuation with the previous step, if the Editor finds the entry to be credible, it gets approved and is published on the database. The rejected entries are also recorded and remain with the Editor.
Secondary Source Reports: Gathered from secondary sources only are taken into consideration by the database. The database does not have its own staff collecting reports from the ground.
Specific subject matter: The database records violence only against religious minorities. Hate crimes against SCs/STs/OBCs for their caste identity and targeted violence against women or LGBT communities for their gender identities do not form a part of the database. Political vendetta and/or personal attacks on politicians are also excluded from the subject matter of the database.
 The first Statutory National Commission was set up on 17th May 1993. Vide a Gazette notification issued on 23rd October 1993 by the Ministry of Welfare, Government of India, five religious communities viz; the Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Zoroastrians(Parsis) were notified as minority communities. Further, vide notified detail 27th Jan 2014,Jains have also been notified as a minority community. As per the 2011 Census, these six religious minority communities constitute 19.4% of the country’s population.
Religious identity based hate crimes against people previously from the SC/ST community who have converted to other religions which are categorized as religious minorities in India also form a part of the subject matter of the database.