HC notice to govt on compensation scheme for rape victims

The High Court, on Thursday, ordered notice to the State government and Karnataka State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA) seeking directions to implement the existing compensation scheme for rape victims.

The division bench, comprising Chief Justice D H Waghela and Justice Ashok B Hinchigeri, was hearing a petition filed by 50 women advocates from the High Court, alleging that the State Home department had failed to implement the scheme and as a result, the money allocated for compensation had lapsed.

Referring to the information received through the Right to Information Act, the petition states that since 2012, every year the government had allocated Rs 1 crore for the scheme. But during this period, just Rs 25 lakh has been utilised and the remaining fund remained unused and lapsed.

According to the petitioners, they made several inquiries with the government for special schemes for the victims of sexual assault but they were told that there are various schemes initiated by several departments, but there is no single scheme where women can get all benefit under one roof.

The petitioners sought directions to appoint KSLSA as nodal agency for co-ordination of various schemes for women and ensure disbursement of funds at the earliest. It has also sought directions to the police to report such incidences to the authority within 24 hours so that victims are given all necessary benefits.

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