India's top police official has caused outrage for uttering the statement: "If you can't prevent rape, you enjoy it."

Central Bureau of Investigation chief Ranjit Sinha made his remarks during a conference about illegal sports betting on Tuesday.

Speaking in support of legalising gambling, Sinha suggested if the New Delhi could not stop the practice, it could at least make some revenue out of it, the Hindustan Times reported.

rajit sinha

Central Bureau of Investigation chief Ranjit Sinha has apologised for his remarks

He said: “If you cannot enforce the ban on betting, it is like saying, ‘If you can’t prevent rape, you enjoy it'."

His comments have been met with widespread condemnation, with some activists calling for his resignation.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Brinda Karat told the Associated Press Sinha's comments were offensive to women everywhere.

"It is sickening that a man who is in charge of several rape investigations should use such an analogy," she said.

"He should be prosecuted for degrading and insulting women."


Following the backlash, Sinha has apologised.

In a statement printed by the Times of India, he said: "I gave my opinion that betting should be legalised and that if the laws cannot be enforced that does not mean the laws should not be made.

"This is as erroneous as saying that if rape is inevitable, one should lie back and enjoy it.

"I regret any hurt caused as the same was inadvertent and unintended. I reiterate my deep sense of regard and respect for women and commitment to gender issues."

Sinha's comments come in the wake of the death of a 23-year-old gang rape victim, which sent women's rights to the top of India's social agenda. Four men found guilty of her death were sentenced to death in September.

India's National Crime Records Bureau says 24,206 rape cases were registered in the country in 2011, though the number of unreported cases is believed to be much higher.

A woman is raped in Delhi every 14 hours, according to figures quoted by the BBC.

Despite this, official figures show that there was only one conviction for rape in the whole of 2012.

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  • A policeman is reflected in the mirror of his motor bike as he keeps an eye on women who gathered to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indians participate in a candle lit vigil to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • Women wear black bands across their face as they join a gathering mourning the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indian policemen in riot gear stand guard as protesters, unseen, march the streets while holding candles as they mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • An Indian woman shouts at a police officer during a gathering of people to mourn the death of the 23-year-old gang rape victim in Mumbai, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. The young Indian woman who was gang-raped and severely beaten on a bus in New Delhi died Saturday at a Singapore hospital, after her ordeal galvanized Indians to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence that impacts thousands of them every day. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

  • Indian men and women lie down on the ground mimicking dead bodies as they mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indians light candles and mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Hyderabad, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Mahesh Kumar A.)

  • Indians light candles and mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Hyderabad, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Mahesh Kumar A.)

  • Indians light candles and mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Hyderabad, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Mahesh Kumar A.)

  • Indian women participate in a candle-lit vigil to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indian women participate in a candle-lit vigil to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indian women shout slogans as they participate in a rally demanding women’s rights and mourning the death of a 23-year-old gang rape victim, in Kolkata, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Bikas Das)

  • Indian women participate in a candle-lit vigil to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indian women participate in a candle-lit vigil to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik creates a sculpture to pay homage to the gang rape victim who died early Saturday, in Puri, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo)

  • Indian policemen stand at the venue where mourners gather after news of the death of a 23-year-old gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. The young Indian woman who was gang-raped and severely beaten on a bus in New Delhi died Saturday at the hospital, and her horrific ordeal has galvanized Indians to demand greater protection from sexual violence that impacts thousands of women daily.(AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • Sand artist Raj Kapoor holds a candle near a sculpture at the Sangam to pay tribute to a gang rape victim who died early Saturday, in Allahabad, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

  • An Indian woman holds a placard as she joins others in a protest to mourn the death of the 23-year-old gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Indians hold placards during a protest to mourn the death of the 23-year-old gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Indians light candles as they mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indian students hold candles and a banner as they participate in a candle light march to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Ahmadabad, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Ajit Solanki)

  • Indians hold candles as they mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indian students participate in a candlelight vigil protest to mourn the death of the 23-year-old gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Indians participate in a candlelight vigil to mourn the death of the 23-year-old gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Indians light candles as they mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Indians attend a gathering to mourn the death of a rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. Damini, seen on a banner, is a symbolic name given to the victim, taken from a Bollywood film of the same name about a woman's fight against society for justice for a rape victim.(AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • ADDS THE DESCRIPTION ON THE BANNER - Indians attend a gathering to mourn the death of a rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. Damini, seen on a banner, is a symbolic name given to the victim, taken from a Bollywood film of the same name about a woman's fight against society for justice for a rape victim.(AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • ADDS THE DESCRIPTION ON THE BANNER - Indians attend a gathering to mourn the death of a rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. Damini, seen on a banner, is a symbolic name given to the victim, taken from a Bollywood film of the same name about a woman's fight against society for justice for a rape victim.(AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • Indian students hold placards as they participate in a protest to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • An Indian woman holds a placard during a protest to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Indians participate in a silent protest rally to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Hyderabad, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.)

  • Indians light candles as they mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/ Saurabh Das)

  • Ugyen Thinley Dorje

    Tibetan Buddhism's third most important leader Ugyen Thinley Dorje, the 17th Karmapa, watches dancers perform during a prayer ceremony in Bodhgaya, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Buddhists believe that the Buddha attained enlightenment in Bodhgaya. (AP Photo/Manish Bhandari)

  • An Indian girl participates in a protest to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Bangalore, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Activists of India's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party shout slogans during a protest to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in Mumbai, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

  • Indians burn photographs of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, front, Congress party President Sonia Gandhi, right, and Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi, left, during a protest over the death of a gang rape victim, in Ahmadabad, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Ajit Solanki)

  • Indian women and children participate in a silent procession to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

  • An Indian woman ties her mouth with a black cloth and holds her baby during a silent procession to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

  • Indian students participate in a silent protest to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

  • An Indian woman ties her mouth with a black cloth and holds her baby during a silent procession to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

  • Indian women participate in a silent procession to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

  • An Indian woman, mouth tied with a black cloth, participates in a silent procession to mourn the death of a gang rape victim, in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

  • An Indian woman shouts at a police officer during a gathering of people to mourn the death of the gang rape victim in Mumbai, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

  • An Indian woman cries as she holds a placard during a gathering of people to mourn the death of the gang rape victim in Mumbai, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

  • An Indian protester wears a placard and shouts slogans during a gathering to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. Placard reads "No Bullets or batons. We want justice. Call a special session of the parliament to enact a special law against rape."(AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • An Indian holds a candle as he attends a gathering to mourn the death of the gang rape victim in Mumbai, India , Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Indian police charged six men with murder on Saturday, adding to accusations that they beat and gang-raped the woman on a New Delhi bus nearly two weeks ago in a case that shocked the country. The murder charges were laid after the woman died earlier Saturday in a Singapore hospital where she has been flown for treatment. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

  • An Indian walks past a billboard with posters of solidarity to a victim of a gang rape in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)

  • Indians participate in a silent rally to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)

  • Indians participate in a silent rally to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)

  • Indians participate in a silent rally to mourn the death of a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)

  • Chief Minister of Delhi state Sheila Dikshit, front left, gestures to pacify agitated protesters heckling her when she came to express her sympathy with them after the death a gang rape victim in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012. Shocked Indians on Saturday were mourning the death of the woman who was gang-raped and beaten on a bus in New Delhi nearly two weeks ago in an ordeal that galvanized people to demand greater protection for women from sexual violence. Dikshit was forced to leave the venue. They blamed her for the deteriorating law and order situation in the Indian capital. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)